The Kabyle Polity in Pre-colonial Algeria
By (author) Hugh Roberts
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Berber Government by Hugh Roberts
Book DescriptionThe Berber identity movement in North Africa was pioneered by the Kabyles of Algeria. But a preoccupation with identity and language has obscured the fact that Kabyle dissidence has been rooted in democratic aspirations inspired by the political traditions of Kabylia itself, a Berber-speaking region in the north of Algeria. The political organisation of pre-colonial Kabylia, from which these traditions originate, was well-described by nineteenth-century French ethnographers. But their inability to explain it led to a trend amongst later theorists of Berber society, such as Ernest Gellner and Pierre Bourdieu, to dismiss Kabylia's political institutions, notably the jema'a (assembly or council), and to reduce Berber politics to a function of social structure and shared religion. In Berber Government, Hugh Roberts, a renowned expert on North Africa, uncovers and explores the remarkable logics of Kabyle political organisation. Combining political anthropology and political and social history in an interdisciplinary analysis, Roberts challenges the excessive emphasis on kinship and religion in the study of the Maghreb. He instead explores the political structures and processes of the Kabyles, examining the organisation of the Kabyle polity and its intricate frameworks of law, political representation and self-government. Additionally, in a pioneering account of Kabylia's relations with the Ottoman Regency, he provides the first in-depth historical explanation of the genesis of the Kabyle polity as this existed at the moment of the French conquest of the region in 1857. In thus grounding the explanation of Kabyle political organisation in a resolutely historical analysis spanning the Ottoman era, Berber Government offers a radical alternative to previous paradigms and lays the foundation of new way of understanding the complex place and role of the Kabyles in Algerian political life from the pre-colonial era to the present day.
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Book DetailsISBN: 9781845112516
(234mm x 156mm x 36mm)
Publisher: I.B.Tauris & Co Ltd
Publish Date: 30-Jul-2014
Country of Publication: United Kingdom
Books By Author Hugh Roberts
Battlefield, Paperback (March 2017)
Combating the tendency to reduce Algeria's tragedy to a clash of stereotypes, Roberts offers a radical corrective to Western misconceptions.
Berber Government, Paperback (January 2017)
The Berber identity movement in North Africa was pioneered by the Kabyles of Algeria. But a preoccupation with identity and language has obscured the fact that Kabyle dissidence has been rooted in democratic aspirations inspired by the political traditions of Kabylia itself, a Berber-speaking region in the north of Algeria.
Queen's Diamonds, Hardback (May 2012)
Tells the story of the magnificent royal inheritance of diamonds from the time of Queen Adelaide in the 1830s to the present day. Illustrated with archive material as well as photography of the jewels, this book includes stones of international importance as well as items of great historic significance.
French Porcelain, Hardback (May 2009)» View all books by Hugh Roberts
Published in three volumes, the catalogues cover all of the French porcelain made at Sevres and in the paris facotires before 1830, with specific attention paid to the King's acquisition of outstanding pieces of 18th century Sevres porcelain.12
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Author Biography - Hugh Roberts
Hugh Roberts is the Edward Keller Professor of North African and Middle Eastern History at Tufts University. He previously held the position of Director of the International Crisis Group's North Africa Project and is the author of The Battlefield: Algeria 1988-2002.
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