Afterword: Patterns of Inclusion and Exclusion in African Societies

  • Robin Cohen
Part of the Global Diversities book series (GLODIV)


Patterns of inclusion and exclusion in Africa can be seen ‘from the inside’ and ‘from the outside’. The bulk of the analysis in this book concentrates on insider accounts and I will return to that perspective in my conclusion. However, in this Afterword, I want briefly to present a way of understanding the outside view, graphically proposed by Levi-Strauss (1995, pp. 297–298):

If we studied societies from the outside, it would be tempting to distinguish two contrasting types; those which practise cannibalism … that is, which regard the absorption of certain individuals possessing dangerous powers as the only means of neutralising those powers and even of turning them to advantage … and those which … adopt what might be called the practice of anthropemy (from the Greek emein, to vomit) … which consists of ejecting dangerous individuals from the social body.


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Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Robin Cohen
    • 1
  1. 1.Oxford Department of International DevelopmentUniversity of OxfordOxfordUK

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