Society and the State

in Culture in Chaos

Published by University of Chicago Press

Published in print January 2008 | ISBN: 9780226496412
Published online March 2013 | e-ISBN: 9780226496436 | DOI:
Society and the State

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This chapter details how Machaze district in Mozambique was gradually transformed into a war zone through the nonlinear interpenetrations of structural and acute violence. It highlights the Liberation Front of Mozambique (FRELIMO) government's misinterpretation of the reluctance of local residents to comply with government relocation orders as evidence of their support for the insurgency. This chapter explains how the Mozambican National Resistance (RENAMO) was able to capitalize on popular alienation from the post-colonial state in Machaze. It also argues that local political agency in wars is often unrecognized or misunderstood, because analysts only recognize the “authenticity” of political discourse that is primarily about the state.

Keywords: war zone; Machaze district; Mozambique; structural violence; FRELIMO; insurgency; RENAMO; post-colonial state; political discourse

Chapter.  9427 words. 

Subjects: Anthropology

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