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Nomads and Nation Building in the Western Sahara: Gender, Politics and the Sahrawi
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Nomads and Nation Building in the Western Sahara: Gender, Politics and the Sahrawi (Hardback)

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Fabled for more than three thousand years as fierce warrior-nomads and cameleers dominating the western Trans-Saharan caravan trade, today the Sahrawi are admired as soldier-statesmen and refugee-diplomats. This is a proud nomadic people uniquely championing human rights and international law for self-determination of their ancient heartlands: the western Sahara Desert in North Africa. Konstantina Isidoros provides a rich ethnographic portrait of this unique desert society's life in one of Earth's most extreme ecosystems. Her extensive anthropological research, conducted over nine years, illuminates an Arab-Berber Muslim society in which men wear full face veils and are matrifocused toward women, who are the property-holders of tent households forming powerful matrilocal coalitions. Isidoros offers new analytical insights on gender relations, strategic tribe-to-state symbiosis and the tactical formation of 'tent-cities'.

The book sheds light on the indigenous principles of social organisation - the centrality of women, male veiling and milk-kinship - bringing positive feminist perspectives on how the Sahrawi have innovatively reconfigured their tribal nomadic pastoral society into globalising citizen-nomads constructing their nascent nation-state. This is essential reading for those interested in anthropology, politics, war and nationalism, gender relations, postcolonialism, international development, humanitarian regimes, refugee studies and the experience of nomadic communities.

History & PoliticsHistory: specific events & topicsNational liberation & independence, post-colonialismHistory & PoliticsPolitics & governmentHistory & PoliticsRegional & national historyAfrican historyPhilosophy, Psychology & Social SciencesAnthropology Publisher: I.B.Tauris & Co. Ltd. Publication Date: 30/03/2018 ISBN-13: 9781788311403  Details: Type: Hardback Format: Books
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Konstantina Isidoros is Postdoctoral Associate at the Institute of Social and Cultural Anthropology (ISCA) and Research Associate of the International Gender Studies Centre (IGS), both at the University of Oxford where she also completed her DPhil and MPhil. She has published in the Journal of the Anthropology of Middle East, Interventions: International Journal of Postcolonial Studies and is co-editor of the book Beyond Patriarchy in Muslim Societies.

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