cover of book

The Hatchet's Blood: Separation, Power, and Gender in Ehing Social Life
by Marc R. Schloss
University of Arizona Press, 1988
Paper: 978-0-8165-1364-2 | Cloth: 978-0-8165-1042-9
Library of Congress Classification DT549.45.B39S35 1988
Dewey Decimal Classification 966.3

Winner of the Royal Anthropological Institute’s Amaury Talbot Prize for African Anthropology

The ritual complexes of the Ehing, a farming people of southern Senegal, embody an elaborate set of prohibitions on social behavior and prescribe the general rules of Ehing social organization. Power is distributed and maintained in Ehing culture by the concept of Odieng (“hatchet”), which as a spirit acts upon human beings much as an ax does upon a tree, falling from above to punish its victims for transgression. Marc R. Schloss’s ethnography of the Ehing is a study of the meaning of Odieng’s power, explaining why its rules are so essential to the Ehing way of life.

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