As part of their joint research program “Ritual animal death: circulations of standards and of representations. Comparative approach between France, Bulgaria (Balkans) and Sudan”, Alice Franck, Geographer and Coordinator of CEDEJ Khartoum, and two other researchers – Jean Gardin, Geographer and Assistant professor in Paris I Pantheon-Sorbonne University, and Olivier Givre, Anthropologist and Assistant professor in Lyon 2 University – have conducted a fieldwork in Khartoum, from August 20th to September 3rd, on the topic of ritual animal death.
For this purpose, they have met with a wide range of Sudanese actors: livestock traders, butchers, slaughterers, exporters, organizations in charge of the establishment of standards/norms (health or religious), charitable organizations, as well as veterinary services.
CEDEJ Khartoum has supported their fieldwork in Sudan.
As part of the Marie Curie Initial Training Network (ITN), TRANSMIC (Transnational Migration, Citizenship and the Circulation of Rights and Responsibilities), I am conducting my PhD on “Transnational social protection: How Sudanese migrants in the Netherlands and the United Kingdom and their families in Sudan make use of social protection, locally and transnationally”.
This joint PhD project, between the University of Maastricht (Netherlands) and the University of Aix-Marseille (France), runs from 2014 until 2017.
During the course of the fieldwork in Sudan (mostly Khartoum and Omdurman), from August 3rd to October 16th 2016, I conducted ethnographic research with the families of the migrants I had previously met and interviewed in the Netherlands and the United Kingdom (UK).
Mai Azzam is a junior anthropologist graduated from the University of Khartoum. Mai holds two master degrees in Anthropology. The first one is from the University of Khartoum 2010 and the latest is an M.Phil. in anthropology of development from the University of Bergen. Her research interests are on youth, Islam, and political anthropology. She worked with youth movements in Khartoum, Sudan, to explore more about youth role in public life in Khartoum. Mai worked in Khartoum as a junior researcher at CEDEJ (Centre d'Études et de Documentation Économiques, Juridiques et sociales) for three years. She also worked in different capacities with local NGOs in Khartoum and developed her activist personality.
This is a series of life stories of young motivated people in Khartoum. It is a direct reflection from ethnographic material collected in 2015. I spent six month for data collection among two charity associations in Khartoum namely Sadagaat and Shari’ Al Hawadith. Each association has started via informal methods and grows to fill a gap left by government privatization policies and investments on war and defense rather than social services.
A scientific conference, organized by CEDEJ Khartoum, CFEE in Addis Ababa and the University of Khartoum entitled “Migration and Exile in the Horn of Africa: State of Knowledge and Current Debates” was held in November 2015 in Khartoum: for two days this major event brought together about forty researchers specialized in the field of migrations in the Horn of Africa.
Dr Catherine Wihtol de Wenden is a renowned specialist on migration.
During her visit in CEDEJ Khartoum, we screened the documentary « Time tolookatgirls: migrantsin BangladeshandEthiopia »(directed by Marco Speroni, 31 minutes – 2015), produced and researched by Katarzyna Grabska, Nicoletta Del Franco and Marina De Regt.
Dr Katarzyna Grabska’s field research on patterns of return and displacement movements of South-Sudanese en route to Sudan/Ethiopia as a result of the civil conflict in the South.
In January 2016, CEDEJ Khartoum organized the book launch of her book « Gender, Home & Identity: Nuer repatriation to Southern Sudan » (James Currey, 2014) at the University of Khartoum.
Film screening/debate about migration in March 2016: “Days of hope”, by the Danish director Ditte Haarlov Johnsen
“DAYS OF HOPE” (2013, 74 min) – Every year thousands of Africans leave their families behind and risk their lives in hope of a better life. “Days of Hope” brings us close to these people, providing an inside look at the struggles these emigrants face.
Dr Kasia GRABSKA and Dr Azza AZIZ, anthropologists with interest in migration issues, lead an after-screening discussion of the film.
« The border between the Central African Republic and Sudan has always been porous and the Central African’s presence in Darfur is old. However, the migration of Central African in Khartoum seems to be more recent and linked with the troubles since the putsches of François Bozize and Michel Djotodia. This small community has still a low visibility and has not been studied since now. I focus my study on why and how they left the Central African Republic and came into Sudan. I try to find which networks lead them up to Khartoum and help to their integration. I also ask the question of the status of these migrants. This last point reveals a link between the refugees and the students. Actually, the main network for the Central African to integrate them in Khartoum seems to be the International University of Africa. »– Khadidja Medani
Miralyne Zeghnoune’s ongoing fieldwork on Sudanese migrants in France and in Sudan.
Miralyne Zeghnoune, a master student, is currently collecting data on Sudanese migrants’ conditions in France (migratory route, reasons for leaving, future projects, connections with the family in Sudan, etc.). After two-month fieldwork in France (Paris, Lyon, Calais), she will study in Khartoum these migrants’ family and entourage (initial project, administrative procedures, contacts with the migrant, etc.).
Alice Koumurian’s fieldwork on Syrian migrants (after 2011) in Khartoum.
Undeniably, the phenomenon of the increasing flow of Syrians coming to Sudan, resulting from the closing of the Turkish border coupled with the facility of entrance to Sudan due to the fact that they do not need a visa to enter Sudan and permission of stay is not unduly complicated, also requires the collection and analysis of data.
Doctorante de l’Université de Montréal (département de science politique), récemment de passage au CEDEJ Khartoum, Anne-Lauré Mahé a entrepris de dessiner son récent terrain soudanais. Découvrez ses « Réflexions sur une tradition soudanaise ».
As part of a joint research program “Ritual animal death: circulations of norms and of representations. Comparative approach between France, Bulgaria (Balkans) and Sudan”, we formed a team…
Alice Franck, Geographer and Coordinator of CEDEJ Khartoum
Jean Gardin, Geographer and Assistant professor in Paris I Pantheon-Sorbonne University, and
Olivier Givre, Anthropologist and Assistant professor in Lyon 2 University
…and conducted fieldwork in Khartoum, from 20th of August to the 3rd of September, related to the topic of ritual animal death.
During the course of this fieldwork, we were privileged to meet with a wide range of Sudanese actors: livestock traders, butchers, slaughterers, exporters, organizations in charge of the setting up of standards/norms (health or religious), Islamic NGOs, as well as veterinary services.
CEDEJ Khartoum supported our fieldwork in Sudan which was the third and final terrain complementing our comprehensive programme of comparative research characterized by a special focus on Aïd el Adha
Initially, we contrasted the concept “ritual death” to a hypothetical death devoid of metaphysical sense”. While binary, this dichotomy makes sense in view of the current debates on ritual animal death specifically in France. However comparative work in Bulgaria, France and Sudan demonstrates, through the diversity of practices and discourses, that the “ritual” and the “profane” exist on a continuum.
From this perspective, we consider other variations deserve to be studied in order to better analyze the circulation of norms that surround animal death such as the distinction between industrial and domestic slaughter. The fact that animal slaughter has become an increasingly technical process raises a lot of concerns for our interlocutors in France, Bulgaria and Sudan. We think that the dichotomy “industrial VS domestic slaughter” should not be too acute because the term “domestic” itself needs to be interrogate since its exact definition remains ambiguous.
Due to a focus on normative framework, we were interested in familiarizing ourselves with the role of the professional bodies that adopt, design and perpetuate norms and standards. We observed that this “space of norms and standards” is very hierarchical and well structured at the international level, (with the World Organization for Animal Health), at the national level (for example, in Sudan, with the Halal Council, the office in charge of halal norms), and at the municipal level (municipal veterinary).
We equally focus on exploring the differences in perception related to notions of “animal welfare”, which have been defined by veterinaries and various international organizations. Contrary to France – where the concern with “animal welfare” is not exclusive to pet but also pertains to livestock -, in Bulgaria it remains confined to the former. Significantly the issue in Sudan does not reach a level of public concern.
Furthermore, we found it particularly relevant to study the relationship between norms and trust. We cursorily noted that the loss of trust in industrial slaughter is strong in France, weak in Bulgaria and negligible in Sudan: respecting the hierarchy of GDP per capita, the duration of urbanization and of the level of industrialization within the meat market. However the multiplicity of contexts is highly relevant since it contributes to mitigating or even contradicting this evolutionary pattern. This makes for a more fluid reading of the heterogeneous manifestations of norms and standards.
Inter-subjective trust stands in opposition to impersonal norms, however multiple interviews expose a variant of trust in relation to the norms (eating organic or eating halal); which may in turn be subverted by the further interrogation of what constitutes “organic” or “halal”? The latter trust is inscribed in a specific label.
The question of trust equally posits itself in our findings related to Eid sacrifices which take place in the country of the South through the interventions of Islamic NGOs. The issue of delegation is highly charged since it bears the onus of sacrificing on behalf of another on a sacred plane. In the western context where the majority of donors is to be found, the issue of how industrial slaughter houses operate, directs the choices of a Muslim clientele in opting for a distant slaughter.
Departing from a study which was essentially dealing with the sacred and non sacred aspects of animal death, we were quikly confronted with the salience of the norms. We do not profess to be offering a novel contribution, however our contribution offers a clearing for further interrogations surrounding the status of the standardization of animal death.
Our next step: A workshop on the topic of animal death – open to the public – will be held on Friday 27th, November 2015 (9 am – 1 pm), at the Institute of Geography, in Paris 1 University.
The following picture was taken during a night slaughter in the mastaba (about 200 bulls and camels and 600 goats and sheeps slaughtered between 11 pm and 7 am on a slab by a hundred butcher boys), in Khartoum. If taken (generally undercover) in a northern-american or european industrial slaughterhouse, this kind of pictures is often used to accuse meat-eaters and meat-producers of cruelty toward animals. But at the same time, we’d like to point that another-wiser-interpretation is possible : even in rude conditions (blood, direct vision…) the animals are partly cooperative in the process. Even if they are afraid and must be dragged by force, they show a confidence in the men’s activity. We’d like to impute that to the intensity of physical and emotional exchanges during the whole life of the animal, with humans, in a semi-industrial and semi-traditionnal process.
The thesis defense took place on Friday, November 27th, 2015 at 9 am at the University Paris 8, 2 rue de la Liberté, 93200, Saint Denis in the Hall of theses, Deleuze area (Building A, 1st floor).
The jury was composed of: – AYEB Habib, Senior Lecturer in Geography at the University Paris 8
– Alain BERTHO, Professor of Anthropology at the University of Paris 8
– David BLANCHON, Professor of Geography at the University Paris Ouest-Nanterre.
– Barbara CASCIARRI, Lecturer in Anthropology at the University Paris 8 (supervisor)
– Eric DENIS, Geographer, Director of research at CNRS (rapporteur)
– Aline HEMOND, Professor of Anthropology at the University of Picardie Jules Verne (rapporteur)
– Mauro VAN AKEN, Professor of Anthropology at the University of Milano Bicocca
At the turn of the twentieth century, numerous cities such as Cartagena (Colombia) and Khartoum (Sudan), adopted a centralized technical and administrative model for the management of drinking water. Associated since its construction to planned urban development projects, the water network constitutes a political technology and becomes a landmark of urban spatiality, for politicians as well as for technicians and urban dwellers. The compared analysis of access strategies, daily usage, and the role of water in the imagination of two populations with an ambiguous urban status – Caño de Loro (Cartagena) and Tuti (Khartoum) – allows us to approach the social complexity of contemporary cities in the South. The comparison supposes a reflexive orientation that leads us, over and beyond the socio-political dynamics of each context, to critically consider our categories of analysis. In the first part the water network is contextualized in the history of each city, where its recent apparition and setting up rests upon the reinforcement or creation of dense power relations, as well as a new conception of nature, particularly of water. Such relational and political features lead to, in the second part, an understanding of how the materiality of water and its sharing produces particular localities within the urban space. Therefore, the analysis of relations between public and private spheres through everyday water exchanges lets us discuss the relevance of the notion of “collective management” of resources in Cartagena and Khartoum. The third part considers the mechanisms draw on by different actors within the particular context of urban planning to negotiate their margin of action on land and water. It highlights the political dimension of identity categories as well as the transformative power of individual and collective actions in situations where resource management is crossed with individual, local, national, and global logics at the same time.
Au tournant du XXe siècle, un modèle technique et administratif centralisé est adopté pour l’approvisionnement en eau de consommation dans de nombreuses villes de la planète, dont Carthagène (Colombie) et Khartoum (Soudan). Dès lors, associé aux projets de développement urbain planifié, le réseau hydrique se constitue comme une technologie politique et devient un marqueur de la spatialité et des modes de vie urbains, autant pour les administrateurs que pour les techniciens et les populations citadines. L’analyse comparée des stratégies d’accès, des usages quotidiens et de l’imaginaire lié à l’eau de deux populations insulaires dont le caractère urbain s’avère problématique – Caño de Loro (Carthagène) et Tuti (Khartoum) – permet d’aborder la complexité sociale des villes du Sud contemporaines. La comparaison comporte dans ce sens une orientation critique et conduit, au-delà de l’étude des dynamiques sociopolitiques propres à chaque contexte, à interroger les diverses catégories d’analyse utilisées au cours de ce travail. Dans la première partie de la thèse, le réseau hydrique est restitué dans l’histoire de chaque agglomération où sa mise en place, relativement récente, repose à la fois sur le renforcement, voire sur l’émergence, d’importants rapports de pouvoir et sur une transformation dans la conception de la nature, et plus particulièrement de l’eau. Ce caractère relationnel et politique du réseau ouvre la voie, dans une deuxième partie, à la compréhension de la façon dont la matérialité de l’eau et ses échanges contribuent à la production de « localités » particulières au sein de l’espace urbain. Ainsi, l’analyse des relations entre espaces publics et privés par le biais du partage quotidien de l’eau amène à discuter la pertinence de la notion de « gestion collective » des ressources à Carthagène et à Khartoum. La troisième partie aborde les mécanismes mobilisés par différents acteurs, dans le contexte particulier de la planification urbaine, pour négocier leur marge d’action sur l’eau et la terre. Elle met en lumière la dimension politique des catégories d’appartenance ainsi que le pouvoir transformateur des actions collectives et individuelles dans des situations où la gestion des ressources est traversée par de logiques, à la fois individuelles, locales, nationales et globales.
The Cedej – Khartoum is starting a new research program in partnership with the University of Khartoum and the University Paris 8 with the support of the AUF (Agence Universitaire de la Francophonie). The project will start in march 2015.
This research project aims to analyze the stakeholder’s plays and the power relations revolving around the rural-urban linkages inside the Greater Khartoum conurbation. The diversity of those peripheral areas under permanent recharacterizations is the starting point of this project.
The program supervisors are: Dr Alice Franck (CEDEJ Khartoum, University Paris 1), Dr Munzul Assal (University of Khartoum), Dr Barbara Casciarri (University Paris 8)
You will find more details in French and in the documents attached
A workshop organized by the Observatory of the Horn of Africa (LAM, DAS, IRSEM) was held on 24 November in Paris and supported by the CEDEJ Khartoum. The focus was on politic, religion and conflicts in the Horn of Africa. Three researchers of the CEDEJ have participated to the workshop: Alice Franck the coordinator of the CEDEJ Khartoum was the president of one of the panels, Raphaelle Chevrillon Guibert an associate researcher at CEDEJ presented a paper: « The Sudanese Islamist in front of the economical crises post separation », and Azza Mustafa Ahmed an PhD student associate at CEDEJ presented a paper « Islam and political parties in Sudan : The National Islamic Front ».
You will find further information in the document attached.
The Sudanese team of the Andromaque project held a second Workshop in Khartoum in the reading room of the CEDEJ, on Sunday 2 March, from 9:00 am to 13:00 pm.
The Andromaque Sudan Team gathered European and Sudanese researchers, whose main background is social anthropology, and has recently integrated 2 researchers with a law background. The members present at the workshop of the research team were: Barbara Casciarri (anthropologist, University Paris 8 Saint Denis, France, team’s scientific coordinator); Munzoul Assal and Musa Adam Abdul-Jalil (Department of Anthropology, UoK); Mohamed Abdessalam Babiker (Department of Law, UoK); Philippe Gout (PhD in Law, University Paris II Panthéon Assas, France) and Mai Azzam ( PhD student in anthropology, Khartoum, Sudan). Alice Franck, the coordinator of the CEDEJ in Khartoum was also present during the workshop.
For further information about the Andromaque project you can refer to the post about the first workshop of Andromaque.
The Sudanese team of the Andromaque project held a first Workshop in Khartoum in the reading room of the CEDEJ, on Sunday 24th November, from 10:00 am to 17:00 pm.
Andromaque is the acronyme for Anthropologie du Droit dans les Mondes Musulmans Africains et Asiatiques (Law Anthropologie in the African and Asian Muslim Worlds), a scientific research project supported by the French ANR (National Agency for Research) and led by Baudoin Dupret, director of the Centre Jacques Berque (Rabat, Morocco). It was launched in 2011 and will be achieved at the end of 2014. Its aim is to inquiry the relation between different sources of law (mainly customary and Islamic law) starting from the observation of actual legal practices and related social dynamics among Muslim groups in various regional contexts (Morocco and Sudan in Africa, India and Indonesia in Asia). It is coordinated with Prometee, a project whose aims and issues focus on the same approach and which analyzes similar situations of “legal pluralism” in Mauritania, Algeria and Lebanon.
The Andromaque Sudan Team gathered 6 European and Sudanese researchers, whose main background is social anthropology, and has recently integrated 2 researchers with a law background. The members of the research team are: Barbara Casciarri (anthropologist, University Paris 8 Saint Denis, France, team’s scientific coordinator); François Ireton (socio-economist, CNRS, France); Yazid Ben-Hounet (anthropologist, Laboratoire d’Anthropologie Sociale, France); Munzoul Assal and Musa Adam Abdul-Jalil (Department of Anthropology, UoK); Zahir M. Abdelkarim (anthropologist, PhD candidate at the Max Planck Institute, Germany); Mohamed Abdessalam Babiker (Department of Law, UoK) and Philippe Gout (PhD in Law, University Paris II Panthéon Assas, France).
The main topics tackled by the research team are: issues of land property and transmission in contemporary Sudan (pastoral collective “tribal” lands; agricultural land along the Nile Valley; residential land in the peripheral areas of Greater Khartoum); processes of conflicts’ legal resolution in various contexts (“informal courts” in IDPs areas around the capital town; mechanisms for settlement of disputes between farmers and pastoralists in the Eastern region; trials in “state courts” of Khartoum); overviews of the evolution of legal system(s) in Sudan concerning mainly land ownership, customary and statutory courts, and the relation between international law and shari’a law concerning the definition of minorities.
The aim of the workshop was to present the evolution of the various fieldwork cases, to establish a stronger relation between the social anthropology and the law approaches to legal practices and systems in contemporary Sudan and to link them to the wider common questions raised by the Andromaque project as a whole. The participants to the workshop also discussed the project of an edited book, that should be published soon after the end of the research program (2014) and would hopefully represent an interesting contribution for an interdisciplinary insight to this domain (legal practices and normative law systems) that is so crucial for understanding social dynamics in contemporary Sudan. Another meeting of the Andromaque Sudan Team would be held between February and March 2014, whose aim will be both the follow up of the editorial project and the organization of a final open workshop for the end of 2014.
The CEDEJ Khartoum led a two years project on Islam in Sudan, part of an overall research program, “Strengthening Knowledge of and Dialogue with the Islamic/Arab World” commissioned by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Netherlands.
The research program started in April 2011, at a critical moment of Sudan’s history, right after the referendum in South Sudan and the birth of the new State. The multifaceted relationship between religion and society in Sudan has been deeply affected both by twenty-three years of the Islamist regime, the secession of South Sudan in 2011 and the departure of almost one third of the population, the majority of whom were non-Muslims.
The new political context following the secession in Sudan has not only affected actors of Islam and the Muslim majority but also religious minorities that included non-Muslims and Muslims who are not part of the Sunni majority. The secession of South Sudan had affected in a significant manner the status of Muslims from Southern Sudanese Muslims in the new state of South Sudan as well as the non-Muslim minorities in Sudan.
The objective of this study is to analyze these recent developments in the religious spectrum during the past two decades in Sudan by focusing first on the emerging actors/trends and new religious practices, and second on the status of religious minorities and interreligious relations in Sudan and South Sudan. In the first part of the study, the authors seek to highlight the pluralism of expression of Islam and new forms of urban religiosity and link these with the social and political changes. The second part covers the issue of the status of religious minorities in Sudan and South Sudan. The category of minority in this research includes non-Muslims in Sudan, Muslims who are not part of the Sunni majority and Muslims in South Sudan. The authors highlight the state’s policies (legal, political and administrative) to manage their religious minorities, explaining the current fragile status of religious minorities. The issue of how minorities perceive themselves and how they are perceived and protracted in the public opinion is an important aspect of their status in the state and society. This is dealt with in a closing chapter that focuses on the public discourse on minorities. The public discourse on minorities is an interesting area to identify the influence of new religious trends.
This study has been conducted by researchers from different disciplines in social sciences. This multidisciplinary approach contributes largely to relate the socio-political and legal dimensions of the problematic of Islam and society in Sudan. For more details, read the synthesis report available on our website. ◼