Power of Secrecy

Ferdinand de Jong

in Masquerades of Modernity

Published by Edinburgh University Press

Published in print October 2007 | ISBN: 9780748633197
Published online September 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780748670642 | DOI:
Power of Secrecy

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This chapter begins with a discussion of the secrecy practiced in the Casamance region of Senegal and how it provides Casamançais with the means to produce an alternative modernity. This is followed by a review of prevailing theories of secrecy. The chapter then sets out the purpose of the book, which is to stress how practices of secrecy establish relations of power. It examines how historical practices of secrecy retain their relevance in contemporary circumstances and serve as powerful techniques for self-assertion. Practices of secrecy may be historical, but some of them evolved into contemporary modes for the expression of discontent with postcolonial governments. The book shows that these practices have a long history of providing organizational principles for contestation. Indeed, this study seeks to demonstrate the historicity of resistance through secrecy. An overview of the subsequent chapters is also presented.

Keywords: Casamance region; Senegal; secrecy; alternative modernity; locality

Chapter.  9316 words. 

Subjects: African Studies

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