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Milne, Janet Catherine Murray (1976) The changing pattern of mobility and migration of the Amarar tribe of Eastern Sudan. MPhil thesis. SOAS University of London. DOI: https://doi.org/10.25501/SOAS.00029055

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Abstract

This work, based on fieldwork among the Amarar tribe of Eastern Sudan in 1972, investigates their changing pattern of mobility and migration. The harsh geographical environment in which the Amarar have traditionally lived as pastoral camel-herding nomads is described, and the new aspect of their lives by which due to recent ecological pressures, they have been moving to settle in or around local villages and nearby towns; especially Port Sudan where many have become dockworkers. The fieldworker concentrated on one group of Amarar, the Musayab, and followed their movements both in the rural, village and urban environments. The village markets are essentially nomad-orientated with Amarar taking up crafts and trade. In the towns the majority of the Amarar see their stay as temporary. Despite overcrowding and changes in their economic structure, their orientation is essentially based on traditional nomadic norms. The segmentary lineage system on which their leadership principles and general coherence are based, continues to be essential for dispute settlement in urban as in rural areas. Particular cases involving blood vengeance, theft and land are discussed. Though these disputes often take place in the rural areas, their settlement is essential for the restoration and maintenance of peaceful relations in the town. Furthermore endogamous marriage patterns continue to unite tribesmen throughout the Amarar area. Whilst the maintenance of the segmentary lineage system gives stability to the Amarar political system, despite rapid economic change, their basic beliefs in the power of a remote Islamic God act as an anchor for their whole social structure. The ability of their belief system to incorporate hew spiritual media from sufism to fortune telling, gives security through flexibility and an additional impetus to the vitality of the tribe.

Item Type: Theses (MPhil)
SOAS Departments & Centres: SOAS Research Theses > Proquest
DOI (Digital Object Identifier): https://doi.org/10.25501/SOAS.00029055
Date Deposited: 16 Oct 2018 15:06
URI: https://eprints.soas.ac.uk/id/eprint/29055

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