Chapter

Enslavement and Everyday Life: Living with Slave Raiding in the North-Eastern Mandara Mountains of Cameroon

Scott MacEachern

in Slavery in Africa

Published by British Academy

Published in print November 2011 | ISBN: 9780197264782
Published online January 2013 | e-ISBN: 9780191754012 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.5871/bacad/9780197264782.003.0006

Series: Proceedings of the British Academy

Enslavement and Everyday Life: Living with Slave Raiding in the North-Eastern Mandara Mountains of Cameroon

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The northern Mandara Mountains of Cameroon have been a focus of slave raiding for the past five centuries, according to historical sources. Some captives from the area were enslaved locally, primarily in Wandala and Fulbe communities, while others were exported to Sahelian polities or further abroad. This chapter examines ethnohistorical and archaeological data on nineteenth- and twentieth-century slave raiding, derived from research in montagnard communities along the north-eastern Mandara Mountains of Cameroon. Enslavement and slave raiding existed within larger structures of day-to-day practice in the region, and were closely tied to ideas about sociality, social proximity and violence. Through the mid-1980s at least, enslavement in the region was understood as a still-relevant political and economic process, with its chief material consequence the intensely domesticated Mandara landscape.

Keywords: Cameroon; Mandara mountains; montagnards; Wandala; Fulbe; slave raiding; enslavement

Chapter.  6530 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Early Modern History (1500 to 1700)

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