Hanretta, Sean. Women, marginality and the Zulu state: women's institutions and power in the early nineteenth century

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Publication Information

Paragraph Subjects (OCM)

Publication Information The main body of the Publication Information page contains all the metadata that HRAF holds for that document.

Author: Author's name as listed in Library of Congress records

Title: Women, marginality and the Zulu state: women's institutions and power in the early nineteenth century

Published in: if part or section of a book or monograph Journal of African history -- Vol. 39, no. 3

Published By: Original publisher Journal of African history -- Vol. 39, no. 3 London ; New York: Cambridge University Press. 1998. 389-415 p.

By line: Author's name as appearing in the actual publication by Sean Hanretta

HRAF Publication Information: New Haven, Conn.: Human Relations Area Files, 2005. Computer File

Culture: Culture name from the Outline of World Cultures (OWC) with the alphanumberic OWC identifier in parenthesis. Zulu (FX20)

Subjects: Document-level OCM identifiers given by the anthropology subject indexers at HRAF Theoretical orientation in research and its results (121); Sociocultural trends (178); Gender status (562); Regulation of marriage (582); Mode of marriage (583); Lineages (613); Chief executive (643); Executive household (644); Gender roles and issues (890);

Abstract: Brief abstract written by HRAF anthropologists who have done the subject indexing for the document This study argues that social, cultural, and material conditions of women became highly stratified during the early nineteenth century. Potential for both exploitation and the acquisition of power and prestige increased as women's lives became integrated into the Zulu state. Changes in women's status and roles were not only the result of state centralization, but an important source of power which kings used to try to maintain control over lineage elites. As a result, struggles for political power between Zulu kings and lineage elites played a large role in women's lives, affecting the degree of stratification in general, as well as determining in part the fate of individual women. While some fundamental elements of the cultural construction of masculinity and feminity remained constant throughout this period and shaped the ways in which socio-economic changes were experienced, certain roles began to be seen as determined by women's social and political association rather than as inhering in the nature of the female body. Individual women responded in a variety of ways to try to minimize losses in power or status and to capitalize on new opportunities; but women also initiated more coherent society-wide changes. Growing dissatisfaction among women with the extent of state interference in personal relationships or with the disparity between their own status and that of royal and favored women may have brought about one of the most important changes in Zulu religious history: the appearance of women as dominant members of the class of diviners (p. 415).

Document Number: HRAF's in-house numbering system derived from the processing order of documents 47

Document ID: HRAF's unique document identifier. The first part is the OWC identifier and the second part is the document number in three digits. fx20-047

Document Type: May include journal articles, essays, collections of essays, monographs or chapters/parts of monographs. Journal Article

Language: Language that the document is written in English

Note: Includes bibliographical references

Field Date: The date the researcher conducted the fieldwork or archival research that produced the document no date

Evaluation: In this alphanumeric code, the first part designates the type of person writing the document, e.g. Ethnographer, Missionary, Archaeologist, Folklorist, Linguist, Indigene, and so on. The second part is a ranking done by HRAF anthropologists based on the strength of the source material on a scale of 1 to 5, as follows: 1 - poor; 2 - fair; 3 - good, useful data, but not uniformly excellent; 4 - excellent secondary data; 5 - excellent primary data Ethnologist-4

Analyst: The HRAF anthropologist who subject indexed the document and prepared other materials for the eHRAF culture/tradition collection. John Beierle ; 2004

Coverage Date: The date or dates that the information in the document pertains to (often not the same as the field date). ca.1800-1890s

Coverage Place: Location of the research culture or tradition (often a smaller unit such as a band, community, or archaeological site) South Africa

LCSH: Library of Congress Subject Headings Zulu (African people)


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