Between Peace & Justice
Dispute Settlement Between Karaboro Agriculturalists
& Fulbe Agro-Pastoralists in Burkina Faso

By Sten Hagberg
Dec. 1998
Almqvist & Wiksell
ISBN: 91-554-4247-1
268 p.
$66.00 Cloth

In recent decades there has been an increasing immigration of Fulbe agropastoralists into the Comoe Province in Burkina Faso, and the relatively peaceful coexistence of farming communities of different ethnic groups and the agro-pastoral Fulbe is becoming increasingly problematic. From an argument between two individuals on the border of a sorghum field, tensions may escalate into a village quarrel and eventually develop into a violent ethnic conflict with consequent loss of human life and material property.

This book deals with processes of peace and justice in a context where conflicts of interests between agriculturalists and agro-pastoralists are evident. If focuses on ways in which four main categories of actors - Karaboro agriculturalists, Fulbe agro-pastoralists, Tiefo Masters of the Earth and local government officials - handle disputes related to landed resources. The book is based on four years of multi-sited fieldwork in southwestern Burkina Faso, as well as on studies of literature and archival material. By adopting a multi-ethnic perspective Sten Hagberg makes an innovative contribution to the ethnography of West Africa.

The author shows that dispute settlement is not merely to be seen as a process in which different actors pursue their own political goals, but needs to be situated in the context of what is morally and socially acceptable to public opinion beyond ethnic and socio-political boundaries. The book is not only an import contribution to the anthropological study of peace and justice. It also provides strong arguments for grounding development operations and peacemaking on locally legitimate socio-political structures.

African Studies
Series: Uppsala Studies in Cultural Anthropology

Return to Coronet Books main page