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Lyn Schumaker

Fieldwork, Networks, and the
Making of Cultural Knowledge
in Central Africa
Duke University Press Durham & London 2001
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I U 1"'.\/ n('d.d.r17.t:.;ll'J.f< rtnUIfUJJU/.( Jt{ Y
researchers and ass iStants lived, spent breaks fr om the fi eld\ or
tf' nded conferences during the COlI!' se of their research. The political
" and social background of these researchers, the technologies avail
\ \lble to them in postwar Central Africa, the work relationships and
of developed by them, and the RLI ethos of
urban fieldwork constitute the chief elements of a work
clIltlJrt,\unusual in the history of anthropology.
This will also contribute to recent work that joins anthwpol
ogy and hi h r;>r y togethel' for studi es of AfricaY It is ::l serious attempt
to do H ethnograp hy of anthropology itself to evol..e the
DtlfUrC o f life in ,the fiel d and the prOGCSSI'!S of fi eldwork, a. nd to gain
:111 understandi ng d the relati ons nnd l'i rmds of a diverse grol1p of
people drawn togerht; r for the production of cultural knowledge. I
pursued rhis gonl rhrough ,1 number of field $rr ategies and
archival and secondary sources. I did fieldwork in many of the RLI
anthropollogists' research si t<:ls , where I sought out people who had
8ctt d as informan tS j domestic ernpl oyees, interpreters, and assistants
and iI11'Cf' vic\vcd them about thei r perceptions of anthropology. I al so
observed time their my own ftl!.11 dwork Jl1d any
they l1ll1 de whQr r' Wtlll doi ng and whlat :RU
nnthrop0lllgists had done. This included obscJ'vari om, in a number
of communities, of how local peopler man<\$cd and shaped my own
cxpcl'ience of the f,eld and used t)1Y for local purposes.
In MJcli tiol l, IYHHIV or rhe fC)trl1eY RLI nS8iS"n',\h, provided me with
nr.:!,; lHltm of their wor\< fO l" the In. "! Cho i.l-
";;tlI'E'f;'P I{ , two Ytll1W:hnt I in I
,f the fonnel' rW9IStHl1fS In thel f rural and Urhill1
II in the a utlc\itiorHd
Ge l\' mmi), rtlul rhc jQt rfhlileuttl,i n of om\
a[1t1the ncttlwtl l'k for It bemk on Ol' gm11!l1MIN l j m (he C"'Se
of t'lk ot her. \
Thl t; ';mdy ,\150 is bAsed on with the Otte:!
H'!c with nrc:: hival sources, incl uding research(;rs' per
sonal p:1 pt:-ts, H Li per-sonnei files, researl'!i field reports;
Br itish and Znmbi,1n government l' GGOr c\s , the records of the
comp" tli es , and coll ections of the fi eld
tat;! 1"'1"uL
A Ili''>e.v.{ .....
\. L, =
"The Wate?' Pol/()1('Sthe Stream ,. IT
and home movies, In the p,' ocess of looking at this ml1 tc rial, AS well
as assistants' and infor m anrs' nCCOl1 nts , I ha ve discovered
many RLL.and Manchester School "legends" and field anecc1ores, and
have compa't,d and analyzed these for what they say not onJy " bout
the RLI'S history; ,but also the numerous interpretations by partic
ipants of the mearilhg of that history and its place in their con
struction of their identity...."Finally, in writing up this material, J have
blended anthropologi cal ancL.l{istnrica l second ary sources , including
fhe Manchgsrer Sl': hool monogt-al?hs, trying m situate the b rrer in
their historical contex.t and rel ate tl1 em ro the anthropoloHists' own
nccountfi of their fieldwork and theoretical im1ights. J3ecoll se of the
gn:ar tlumber of monograph" produced 15y the ttL! reseorcbers, I
h:we only made a Sfil rt in thi s endeavor, but'- l hope that 1 have
.. . "
provided the baSIS for future work. Although thiS h)Q.ok cannot be
considered a thorough restudy20 of the classic topics of theManches
ter School, I hope that it will cast some ligh t on the making this
corpus of anthropologi Gal knowledge and provide a history of field
work that anrhropologifi ts and historians wUl find useful."1
Indigenous Anthropolo)!; ists,
or Why All the Fuss about Muchona?
One of the involved in writi ng .1 history of anthropology
t'hM deal s with n !:F(mp of nnthmpologiSt8, their relleu rch assi sta ntsj
and informa nfs is to find concepts ,1ppropri ate fol' aoa.lyzing a ai
vet'se group of people \vith often very different not ions of wh,lt they
!He d(] ing. The ii rel'arl!r' on 88 well :'1[; on othet' abti v
iticil in GQ\(H1inl provider. a Dum bel' of pOSll ihili ticl4, $chohm
lltl Ve and informanrs os Golol1 ii'.e,j by fi n
or, ('is indi geno us nnrhropologists rhem
si?]ves, Or they have pur them in categories th,'lt in.: lu de anthl' opnlo
gists as so-called 111"1'15111<11men or cult ure brokers. All these choices
hnvC'dnrw b;1cks,
111 Hidden Col onialism:' Roger Sanj ek
t be w;:,\ys thot anthropologists and thei r t exts h,l ve made the work of
H , . I..., ... '/1""'"
research assist:ants invisible (though he sees the RU anthropologists
as something of an exception to the rule).22 This approach has much
to reCClrnmend it; research <1 ssisrams generaJly are invisible in the
f"inishccl texts (i f hath today and in the past and, like
wives, often receive only a token measure of f!:r atitude in the preface.
A neld-( G' ntered history of anthropology can make research assi s
mnts' work visible again. Nevertheless, seeing research assistants
solely as an exploited group of local aCtors misses two other impor
tant aspects of their position. Research assistants differ as individ
uals, <'Ind, for some, their work ali assistants is more like that of the
di scipline's own srudents in the met1'OpolitBn universities, slIbject to
an inrcrnal colonialism that rhey tolerate in order to rise in the pro
fc!Ssioll, Snrne of In.! 'll edm:ated, urban viewed rhei.r
this way, though it i e8,Qemisl t t-l expl ore what effect the
color brtr, 1l(;(;(lSS ('(J rInd the coming of
Zn tnbiim hncl on
A simple u.f expl oi tation is inappropritHe for the
Munali Secondary School swclems in Lusaka who
in rhe late I95 0S
and early 19608, worked for the RLT during their school vacations.
Some s;,\ w this work as n step in a possible future career, while others
did the work simply been llse it was an interesring way to carn money
during breaks from school. Nevertheless, even for rural assistants
;wd less Wl!Il-(' ducAred members of the the teams; the
mode! of exploitlHioli fll il s to capture the assismnrs' OWr1 motives
::u1d gOll ll' in \VOI'].;.
A mnrc prob!ii! !il with thi!; appi'QIJeh; h tlWeVtl r; riun a
fnctl li t111 tht' Hr1lhrorolt1gi m ' cXl';lnif::tti tli1 o f rmlY GiHl.'iC
011E' w pIny dtlwll .. y ill an ti of
r()t thl! i l' nwt'J. end!! ; hL1 vt' I1tr(l ff1ptet:1 ro
CI1 J'1f.\ ;f li' fhi ll Mf'I!:H.. :t of the Ri ftHni cltl hy ri1(l' "'J uuliry
91i t4 il !lt; j ll mm in MH:1 S0l11 e
li ke
Cl!ffo)'(l , peJl IHed our rhn r. :.Hid !nfOnmtli f ll t;!l n
hr, \Vifh thell' own il1r.erl.'lllt
ill n ll Wntl nlrel1 gy or hy fhe :unhl'CJ I' t'l lo
Othors h9ve iUGH/H1U Oil rhe "tl (;emari.ntl' of HtJ"
rhropo!ogy'lj tegrs Wh"'l1 rhf: al1thmpo!tlgHlt pUW'Rys m
. "
informants in the text as "indigenous anthropologists" with voices
of their own. This is the case in Bennetta Jules-Rosette's analysis of
Victor Turner's relationship with his informant, !vluchona, the sub
ject of his famolls essay "Muchona the Hornet. "24
I do not believe this view of the anrhropologisr ns a conduir 01'
local voi(;cs actunlly solves the pmbl em of the incgalitnrinn rela tion"
ship between anthropologist and informat'lti moreover, (he cOJ1t:ept
of the indigenous anthropoloi;ist is inadequate for dealing wit'h the
range of people who worked as assistants for the ULl. This is becaLlse
it privileges the rural assistant or informant like MudlOna, sup
posedly rooted in indigenous (even if in some WAYS marginal
to the community Turner studied) and in w\,leh with cra ditiomt l
knowledge. Most of the assistants - ind uding Turner's main
formally employed assista nt, who l'n rely nppnrs in his (ext" - were
nothing like Muc hcms, at least ;11' Turner ponnlys him, Mew hRd a
l1ilX(I" btH:kl!i l'OImfi of urban \' uril l expel'i f! t1r.;e tint! S0l1'1G hilt:!
f l'll ve! ed extensively in Afrit; a and elsewhere for cclucl'I tion, work, or
military service. Most had an intrinsic interest in culrure bur <It the
same time saw racial politics as a far more important issue. Many
sought employment with the RLI for other reasons than the study
of culture, and they used their expertise in culture as a means to
other ends.
A concept that th: usc of culture as both .i ntrinsical1y of
i ntel'est and a means to other ends is the concept of "culrure
h!'Ol..er," This Gonc@)) r also does honor ro Turner's senSl: of n c CllJ1lTIOi1
j.wund b@twe11 hinul0lf and Mucho no ! wirhnm hi il noti on
rh!H he and MlclChor'l9 9. kind of prnfe!lsi'IIUll nbj n; ti vit y) Or
(%.jl,hll ity,i5 Culn1r(: brOKtm use their @!tur:l J kllowkdgc to
feillti(:mships bet\veen different ethnic or racinl groups involved in
ftH powel" and resources. Chieh;
G1111ii , mi ssiontl l'i es, fll1d tlnthl' OPOjogi!;ts hgvc ., 11 t1 lOrcd a'
0u lfUl' C at dmes
:lfld illSei ftlf ions eRn p e rfMI-l1 H
!} irft ilflf I'ole, llt; w r:: IJ.2. 7 !btll RU rcs(:al.'chcrs And tl!isistants Itcmd ns
bt'okcl'S, with the fr eql1e!1tly Jcting AS bro ket's
the anthropologists nnd th", peopl g they mHJi et:L
In A. ddition, H LJ itself acted as tU1 insrinuionnl GLllturc broker in
.. ...,. - .. . , ..... ". ,--
its role [I S an imerpreteL' of cultural ol nc! socinl knowl edge, situafed
between Africans and government :1dmini strators in rhe often ciifA
cult terrain of colonial development policy. Through its association
with the Rhodes-Livingstone Museum, the RI. I also played a role in
the collecti on ,H, d display of African material cnlture to both white
[lnd block publics at a time when culture often provided the ,lmmuni
(iOI1 fOi' [, olirical de bate. Indi vidua l anthropologists (l nci research
n150 aCted ns culture brokers, clnil11i.ng i1 special profes
SiOMI ex pel'tise in deblHeS aboctt African policical and sOt:: inl
velopmenr. Thi l- book focu ses on the process of the profess ionali za
ci on of this kind of brokerage, placing both the researchers and rheir
African Gssistants in Awider context of experts in Afri ca at
,1 tir'l1G \-vhen 111SI1Y sci ences - anthropology them -"'- sought to
play n in postwar Gol onial developmenr pl Bl1 ning, FoJ't'l11' lU I
n eve continuod m aGC Il ll Glllturc broke rs in fhe pOSfO!O
11hll rerit1Q
writing ttlhnl fti fnri es and reviving ot "ilwoming" tradI "
fiN\ nl in [t n. iHl11ospi1ere of ethfilc I'ivnlry ft1t
111e nt rONOljf CeS and from the
Even this concept, however, must be \.Ised with caution, because it
roo much attention on culture as the key differenl;e to be
rl cgurinted by ar1rnrop(}]oglsts and as'IiBtrl n ts . The racial politics of
central Afri ca also played nn important role in the daily activities of
11l1ft nS!listnntll in th@field Bnd il1formed thinking
l\.I1(! wrifing of !11.11 ny o f rhcnn, f:tdli tated the research;
p!\l'rlrLllurly in UrbtUlIlI'enfl, hy the Golor bat rh rt t sepn
nHed ,."hi res (rOll' 1,l RCK!l in most work si nuitiom -!:I. nc
gllri;1ti on ehnt dlJtllt dirccrly with hi stor icGlIy sil'Ul\te tl itletlS of racial
nHIH.: r rlul li (U!flirn l
like the t FJ rtil ''t,:llifttre bro'
sLlgf4(mS !l witt. a lc>cal anti this
1'll<l)' not be Sf!propril\ fl.> , (\f t l1t Wl'fl1 (;un
get MliUllcl rilesc ir t'i.ll mo\ls f Ur tlHfenmr clegf@8!;
GIltI tyP{\!' uf to the 0[1 piH'f tlf htlfh It9!!illlhi. nts
;l !1tl iii l' e f(H'S to
l,cu!11t: ,vhl) mite an <lll lil w It in. all!;1 Iu
vlHIOli s kln d!4 (1 1' .. wl'HHhet Ol' Mlt thl;!il' l1udl ll r1GeS
111r: ""l... il l I 1.111 t Jj-t .l . '\ t., Jtii
recognLze chem as professionals. in the .:ontext of fiddwork, it
allows fol' study of a spectrum Clf pcople employed hy, and orherwise
assisting, anthropologists in their work, rather than implying a sim
plistic distinction between informant und assistant, Like Muchoria,
friend s, or ochers who volunteer their views in the field
can be as influenrinl as paid
Neithee this conc;; ept exclu dG 9 ppl'enrices hi p in a
as p 'lt't of the reilearGh ,l"sistrt l1tS' perspective ()Il th(;1il' work, MOl'eo
nVItl', it a eCl'nl that can be applied equally ttl the :Ulth ropolngiscs
rhemsel ves ,211 The term is not unproblemati c, howeve r, Nor nil those
who volunteer their views in the field can be Gll'Issifieci as intelleG
ruals, hut their views can nevertheless subsr,i ntiaUy inform the t:c
t\t\thl'Opol ogl zing llnd Afri conizing Anthro!'n] ogy
-"The problem with doing statistical surveys in is
that Africans aren't used co sociological rwnarked an an
thropology studc:nr in the middle of fieldwork iJ) bne of the mban
centers previously swdied by the RU . "The>y/ don't know how to
respond like Americans do, when an intervi ewer comes round asking
Wh !311 I heard this Gtlflll1Hmt in 1991 wh en f was begi lil1in l{ my
(lWft fieJdworl( on the RLl -: t fc1trs omerhing W88 11 or quite ri ghr in rhi8
that a.r naive about methods
ospcdaUy in Znmbin, ...yith a thiu the Ruin (hI:;
<: lJloninl peri od, AS well !'I ll extensive !I nti
Vention in the postcolonial period. Thltl Gornm@nt me W
how the African experiencg with
{lr riHI;! f) fCh of any kind - was gild wlwl'l! this expl.'riol1ce fit in
cMteXt of undot'Stbl odi!'lg sod i.lse /') f cbll tural
erlgtl ifl AfricA .
T'o cxpl tnc this issue, this sWdy cX!l min e!l tWO in ,ftr.
hisw!'y of I:\ l1thropology in the rggion. The ,fi rst T cull "anthrop'tl lo!3lz"
atifJ\1 ,'; AtHi1l' gp(:)l ogistfi at lUI spoke; of }\fricnn
Brown hecn li se of the Gonserve rive 110 wre of lingwi sric research in
South Ahica, but reesrnhli shed for I ... estl'tHle whose t R(m rr.:h WIl S
lAter used by the ilPOJtheid governmcnr to justify separare "Bnntu
Educl1 rion. "IR
The dcpnrtrnem of Bantu 5rudies ar Wits, in particular, reflected the
conrext thor hil Q shoped Gluckman'S vi ews during his time as an
undergraduate there. That depnwncnr had embraced scruc:tLl ral
.it" the appointment of Radcliffe-Brown to the , hOi:
o{ Amhropology at VC T It! 192. ]; . Subsequentl y that approacl1
was in South Africa by Winifn:d Hoernle\ who ha,dffirst
studi ed philosophy at VCT (stnning in ! !:}o3 while it was still called
th e Somh College) and lamr srudied anthropology a"nd expe
rimenml psychology under Haddon and ar Cambric{ge, Wundt
nlld Klitpe ar l'(ei pzig :tnd Bonf1, and Durk heim ar the SorbQl1ne.S9 She
,1/ 50 iTI ixed With An1@!'lr;:UhftlUhropologill ts in Ctl,mbritlge Mus8a.Ghll
scres; wl1 il e ther\ When hr hlls bancl ,vall ar Hs rVlfrc:L60

I, ectUt Br in Ilt Wits in and hf work with
Rndt::tiffe-Rl'own; wbom she hOld mef earlier Cambridge; England.
This jOit1t j)l'oj @cr have become a GCln),parll tive study of Afri can
$cJciol itl sOl.l rhem AfJ'icll, if Ra(;!cHfFe-Swwn had nor left
fo!' t he GhHir of s(lt:inl AtlfhropolcISY It t Svdney ill J
Jioernl e; nlso prnmoreclM,nlitlOwsjls approach to AI
rlwuJ;)h she trlol( tl perS() f1 !l 1 rhc fiEcnl mwl1! IHU em
t-il r N 'Ut111 she /lm(l f(l B hel' ftlil!(J fWft1 ]' 9 ;c
to hEI r pl-lr,!i Ji ht'eI Of1 I'GGm19f!'UCti hg rhelr
I.; O/CmHll (wuny r9.r hftr rhgn !In. il rh f:lOfy of
ill flu l:! fltl'ld of mtlGw ml
il". 1;(IO!1fl ll li.I'l1 rMf I' f be l'li'oh
1i.'i1H dI' South t:l '
/Jr i{1j aft (jf U1:I8y.
!oQrn te !t lo fi Rnn il'f'l}r ,,!lHH l'oll!! f()' lIoehl i
8tlfhrf!pnltJgln re!li gi'l rd fftJ m senil1t lH in
J 931'\ HI flJr!; ,IC more !!otlt1 jly (-i ..rIVIt n\fhe P. tl(-{ (j f WtJrld
\V1l r -r l"v() !l he had /1IHiOftlt: B jll'htl in fhtlt ' of Ji bllll:' I1 J
rhDlIght," rhe Sourh A f1' iuHl or. RAte 1;'1
The fir-sr ELI rl:'blhl (un t:! m Ollt mgmhers 0i met
wirh fidcrnle 111id Q 11 of rh OME: \Vhc:) had bQA.fl M her
il ll p tl'Vl!lI O)l ",/1t'!'1 flitJr!::, Jnel tll3 HtlJl .
. # .... ::O-4......-" ' -_ - ..
mann, EileGn Kl' ige, and Hilda Kuper, 1--1c1l [11Un n'8 res Qr tn nn lm
Afrknn ulllumY:Hd!i in JC1hAnncs burg cl l'GW their special nwmriot1.
She bad pointed out the postwar influx of Afri cans f() the City. nnd
discllssed their increasingly permanent urbllni z::I tion ,1nd its lonse.
quences,r.s The RI,I team also met with Jl1lius Lewin, the in
Native Law and Adminimation at Wits, who os a Fa bion sOGinli st
often critiqued the political stance of the liberr>ll s who do minated the
UniVI'sity,61\ "
The sites they vi sited ilItlmnred the SOciAl processes they would
tlxamine itl Northern Rhodesia, After di scussions with Moni ca Wi!
SOI1, Rome members of the visited her forme): fi eld site in Pondo
land and met the district the owner of the tocnl rrading POSf,
and sev(wl l Africans who held positi ons in the narive tlllthority;67
Wilson's Reacti orl to C(,)I'lQ1lS6t, published in I 5) 3 primarily
foclised on the rural side of Pondo llfe bur had inclucled one of the
fiJ:st lHft:m1Ptll ro denl wirh the urban experiencelll of an Afrit:nn jJiO>
.It Wi ts the tellni tollred the flel1l'by African areas of
Orlando and Sophiatown, the latter a vibrnt1t..multierhl1i c, multira
cial suburb that would be demolished unclet' ,l panheid policy,
They descended infO a gol d mine to examine mintJts' working condi,
dons, a viSit the l'e!ll!l:1fchers found parricularly useful because of its
rlmitil3i "The MriG(\li strike with our visit
rhBt nil the
nU:ltl l that one c:tl uld for weJ' 011 clispl nyj " ,Itlhn Darnell

begalt OWl; fhddwork, Jl.U wCl uld'RQo l1
flI19-'A !1 fh @1'(11;111 1artitud@!I Q1W ol'k for gn Eii spl.,y In Ngrrher'M
both iHfiong the Africnm MHI fhe th ey imfm dt;c! '
r ll rhm'e,
Mnktng fil e l"lttld
III WHYS, the fi eld fot nnfhwpologlGa l resGll f'Gh in Northern
hAd to be mBde - tOn5tniGreti our of mnteL' inls proVi ded by
prim' resGEl fchcrs, well as routes of access to pl aces and people rhnt
mher!! had devlopecl iin.r. Admini strrHol'Snncl w re re
bl ef t)f mosr of flll'lgr pri or of 1\ (;'1:814 to nml i'\Gq l1ill iriul'
of knowledge, but explorers, prospector:;, and nadel's had also <1f.
fcered the variabJ e way!; that !\ fri cans responded to ::tnthropologisrs
in rh e fi eld! depcncl ont on whtH th eir E' xperi encs (1f these different
Qf E UrOpe I'11'S hun bge n, The RLl :i ntlltnpnl l'lgim uqed
cur li er into the h&lp and IldviG ft ot11 Acl .
ll1i ni sfra rorll ; miMionnrie!l , and sett lers hi-It thtoly also
rhemstl lvCN h om rhem in rhe auempt ttl gnin aGel' S!! w information
that Afric(lhl' WQuid nor share With rhes@ groups. The SUCCess of chi s
di w Il1 cif1g cr udAll y dgpe!1d:d ot! rhe help (Jf rheir resellJ'ch assistants,
Ol' "clerk-:nterprererq;" lUJ were llSUl1ll y call ed af the time. The!le
men fll ediFiftl th anrhl'Ol'lOlogist!l ' initlil l to the
they snldi sd; r!1I' ough their tfan!llarion introductions to poten"
ria I informants, smoothing of ehe way for rhe researGhci'S' questions,
and general f'l1unagemcnt of rhe reseurchers' inreracrions with local

Om' "rule" rot fi gldwork, GluGktn31'1 advised MitGhel\;
W(lil ll0e to mh Ol'll" lt wife, for thi s could llmd rIl @ to li ve
in g ''i; ululfRl bu bblt;' ;; avoiding GOl'ltBGt With [ocal society, / l
iVlirchl.111, l\1 nrwick, j:'!ollemun\ anci Barnes, however, GIll took their
wiVe' S w the field, Ui timarllly, 0 far flH') rc imponam culturaJ bubble
;1 the work of the Rtl resean;:hers one th nt was deliberately
by flil:' people rhey the rr, s(lG rch Qllsi !J t.:U1t8
\vPI'ke(J )!1 fWfl Iftf{' t'!'H'!! titlf{ for bur at fhe
Y!li'') e j:l,rtlf"' ffl hg; tlw /. h!::ai ll tld tHeilHet'eli f of !!tiJfiE df
rh aftUlft:J i' fi lt1
Int' i:l l Of l"MWEIt Pil flWt ti-hHl ffti' tl Ugh the rtl
Ahl EUii of 1J1:I!cl
the i' tl l e in fli tl lr d:l fuH jtlg (tl):- i4(it -h e tht!ill
ll f the fb t; t-Hltfoi th l"
rhrrhlffh a
G li ':li kifH111, fr'l t (?;tfilfl!'i lol witll {If trW t dYfi l
wt l! all t<tHnltlflO{l f H; rm' hl l9 hi !>
\'Ij th seejously (mI11Jjfu!11i!!ed tlUI' i1lg lil ll ti m nuit;!
tnLl!" tJ[ tht: of li e tonk trJ dcJ of an
f" ruer j3 kked b)' rhe W!H'j ir- (or
LO :llb;- d jjjtJtives .... in l:'O)"
I . ' ,.r;. L ,UUV/&-tf..\.I,j' "I- I '''c;" Ic;.I-l.-" 7)
lecting data led to angry outbursts in Mitchell's letters to other It LI
in the carly dnys of his fi eldwork.
Associ nrion with the
government pluced All '1l1thropologi8t on rhe wrong si de of WIHlt
;Inckmnn hnd called the dominant social cl cnvRge, in hi s Zulul nthJ
work, As Barnell ohserved of his own helcl lJ itE': "I can see In ore riell\,
ages than ties hert'l , ond fat' it rhnr rne wlHJ le 50,;illl r.ml el'
is held rogerhcr only by its Gommon opposition to the B0l11 0
' rhe
men with smfi ll hUiidR.' "?1 Mitchell rhnt rh r, rnn il1 llOciGI
Wf'Vl rhl.' Yao and himll GLf t1tHil hiN wife, Ed m\5 Qn ived with
thliiit lleW bQby and broke the it;: e with Yno wnm@n,7') And thl!! Mor
wtl l:e "very deprcslled inifiaii y';; IlWc Gould s@c the sirllnel's
Hying o'Vgrhead on their wily Jo'buxl! lind Nairobi nnd fdt
All of the (;omplGin tld about difficulty in fJA riy field
wgrk of the of w!1 ry of tlnswt;' fil1g
as WI'J I! as theil' own experience of find confl1sitm
in the eo riy stages of longunge I,,:aming. 5om of chI) loco!s' horedom
with guesrioni ng may have been intendecl to deflect attention from
sensitive topics; In her st cond tom, Colson found that in a vilI,lgC
where she hod collected demographic data during the first rolli', "the
people agree quite cheerfully that they lied last yea r - not all of
them, bur enough so thot the wertm't at nll ShG wem
0Ii m writing g 1'Ilper tHt problems of rhfll'dinbilifY of th
ltift 13 ti C P \\ [hat fhe rl Hl dl:""
jiiit!! " 'I t}ylt willaly, 'If Ol\ iil flEiMt Y@M1 l'!:: i11 eill"
bf} [' l'flJH'!:f r: MIl dft! t1. hi d l yel1rj ," ',g EVeI' f1
i!1t@Coliiol1 's BQJ1jiilflln ntJr gUli f
atH@E eooperllUon in an @lw iwt1J'tHH1t wh@t' e mu4iti tm lt (I f
cl lHl'l i' Y Wlili'@ woll kl1r; wn W wtli'l
Itl l' f1I. WEiS ,'\!iO flit wi th M indwll '!i
Itlfrl pJ.' tl ctice!!; anti he V>'a ll ext l'cmBiy
ing f(:mf when people to th e Im'!f(;(U wi fh
hi m foili d I'G" l1fl ltl d vhf! t prB.c fic; cs fhey hlhi elH rli \lr bag to hilll M
iotll4 d@fl d sfill Went (111 despi te decades of lnissi on ami
a Wl!tl11il! lli
\Vl r however, naive of j(J 11 1 nifilli po
Vi i f;;: , EtirH\; wirn their bdhy! n('mlld, vill irEi d hy Ya
',VClIl lth wl eh III fhdtlli lre III the '(Ob iHt.' u
(1 f' NVf\9i-1htl1M. FI' I'Ji1i j. Clyt:li2 p i'i'.'IHt' t;f1 II!ll titJl1.
!1f O{JIlaJl Mlf!hil iL)
Atl1tl Ugh UIl!l:l to d!;liellri91t ttl onit! r '0 get
at elf l oeb'l l kr'!owierl gl') th1:'y Hlp, (l c!.Jup'mHrtl wieh.
10(;<1 1 of l1H\I1:agit1g thoi l' bohavior antj In ;ill cases the
the t' t:!tlal' cli et :1.!i!J th e itlfor
nht n f'; had fo SOlhCd(!gie.e tl I1 a!ltQ!;tH1!lHk I)Hf people
WF.' :'e ll\VHt't tiltH f1
*fjY 1'l..Jnles Wi th suM) fht' lHII'flj !l!!lfl'U
f ill]l, OR h ilt fi r lJ lg rff !-'l tl (j In hme Mit!
r lMlm I!'{J UIt;i he t:OhEmV!'IP81t1 ! i.mtl Willi I1ffll ll
..,"[flt IBm WIh!hf.J'fifl uHrl, fW:i1c'.
,( "' l _ ':.. iV I J' HI l ; h..,. H..dU ;J J
rices . But th ese inquiries were also welcomed in case::; where the
work could be used to argue the local case against the administra
tion's stand in a territorial dispute. Anthropologists could become
allies and advocates in such struggles. Moreover, African societies
did not present a united front to outsiders hut consistrd of groups
and individuals with diverse and conflicting interests, While some
might be unwilling to give information abollt certain aspects of local
life, others might be happy to do so for any number of reasons,
including their own interest in tradition, history, or politiGs,?9
Researchers at the R I. I usually explained what they were doing as
"history" rather than "anthropology," because they felt that Afri
cans understood what history was about.
This was not simply
because they believed Africans had a nostalgic or proud sense of
tribal identity, but because they recognized that Africans in general
possessed a long and often unpleasant experience of the llse of local
history by the colonial aclministl'ariol1 to cre<1te tribes, allocate terri
tory, decide the make-up of the native administration, and impose
rigid laws where more fluid rul es had formerly obtained. Depending
on its results, anthropologists' work might or might not have been
lI seful to particular factions in these disputes\ bllt it nearly alwa ys
undermined or GOmpHCliced the colonial aclminimntion's views. In
cases where local religious or political praGti ces were at 8tl1.\,e, all
nearly fl lwnys their work to Goul1tcr Ft ncl
gtJverlHrHmt lHf. C111Pt8 to !JlI i'pru 8 I>cwtnin MMWick' .study
tJf rhe nyau IOgnfi!il cntilc11 !'eron fh Hu'
NyaAhmtl Rlove rl1ln!!'\ t
fOi' GXil mploj ;,l for' w rUltHHl '
rio!1 t!1'It!tir fhe rubri c el f their et1l1GatiQI1i.\! fnnc:; rion for boys )\l ith
thmying government fl nd mi ss ion feLl r that they
the yemllg Or provided n ner\vork for poliri cul 81
Thtlt aml'll' opologim' work fll ncrione itJcnll y in this W Hy h H!l hgll n
by Gummr who hove how their own
for tht' illvel1tion of w1. d!tiofl the Of' re
gf:iWj'!H1nti nf Thi p; work ha!! A. fltt!j
;l t t:l l'!? fhl! ioll1cl of knowledgE!;
ne@fl!j w b!1 b fl WtWer\ on t hp very !neal of
1f m.Hl!1gln fCH:lt!ll u!!fS laml thnt itlJiu
ellc{' the development of purticl1lGr loca l defenses: much more than a
genern l to ptc!lcrve 0 1 el1 hofJ Ge local identity is involved. To
rn kc one a disri nc:t ive feAture of the end}' Nrmhern Rnode
sian scene wns the prcYcdence of the geologisr as explorer, Beclluse of
the speculation concerning mineral wealth rhat characteri zed the
Bri tish. SOll ch Africa Company's colonization of the region, geolo
gists had fi gurGd among rhe ea rliest arrivals. They practiced n kind of
prednrory science simi lar to that practiced by the namral scienri srs
who i-1cGompfl l1 icd anrly imperi al expdiri ons. In Africa the
t1.1nSt n(Hfl ri nul> (1f ptc:iarory ,,,as Gll rl Wiese, \'(IieN
played a role in co\onil11 wal'/! thef Jed to the conquest of the
Ngoni pE! Oplt - by the Ngcmi comt and the vari.
Oil S E ll mpeun powers interested in their hmcl - leil ving the Ngoni
wit h [\ pern'lnncm sIJspieiorl of the of outsiders,
The Ngoni auromtlrically applied the tgrm qupc- I'lp'y = or mwaTl
LUa Wiese Ghil d of Wielle -- to Al1)! EUftJpenfl whose in Vi s"
iring thei r- tcrritory WI:\8 L1I1kt'lOWI1 or suspiGit.)Uj . Wh.n Ba rrtcs l1r
ri vet! in NgCJniland1 they initinlly culled hilll qupe
rho tJ gh his gem
(JI'OL1S bentwior and Lblkhero's expl nnariol1s brought fi n end to local
suspicions relntively quickly in the area where he did most of hi s
fi eldwork.
conne(;rlon tQ fhe pllrram (H-lnt Ghi ef's famil y
aided And as Hl:l rneii reGaUt! cl
t1 beer j;) an)' IlfH:ll1fl f wtlj;}j'm!3 n 11tH 11I'e other RUrtl fH%lnS Gl1l0
h(;' !J;iNPl Nevcrehel(-fls , !hUM" suffered [, !)!'l 6wCtl IHlllpkiOti GI-1{; h time
1lE.> ttl '" iU' W N!:lI.Jtl i h@ fr t! tlmmrly Ofj J1 1 n Wf.
Il ) 1) tt
(J-jp rl'l e /11 Flt' ltl r'j'HH't' f t' ll! },
fri !l!' dly !Ii ';-iJ ffipa[' iI/nil f. 1J hl NlJan! If. of rht
fi i \l ill ngt,s Vislttl ft, Ill' hmnfl t hFH ait!.:)" fli t'
iil :.l l'l and ffl e "dl
ii'1kitli pOpl.ll !1fi tw1. " i.lfl fl f,l v. hllt'eh Yervj Qc
21!Hl people c;orni!1l;1etl fO ht' de
SG,' i h!:l d rl1c in :d Vb M jtl?hei I: " Q flt' of fhe WOm !!!l IHt id
"ro\,.!;\ y we an: Il l! Gftfit1H l:loa idp,e Wgt: rhbl" j !hi!'! tOrnonow liUI'
O:1l1tl Swil l hc in There a m rfly
ini orprett r -'- ' 'Ymi ,He lill Il \t(l fE! II Us t hi s m Afl
is dOihg.' " X1
Tlk 111. ( U'll'"'ti A. Humber ..-If "f.1) t he
J I; \:> ",.,\ .11.1 I II, I" "v ...,..,n ,. , I
problems of sll spicion and management of oursiders. Gluckl11llli 's
advice to avoid stAyin g in bhj efg' vill., ses mny hnvt! stemmed from his
own experi ences of Zulu ,mci Lozi both of which had pow
erful roy.,l families who effectively controlled ottrsidel' !I.
< But he did
not obj ect when Col son decided to live in a chief's vill age in her field
site, fo1' he understood that chiefsbi p WAS very di fferent in reilltivcly
egalita.rian Tonga society. 8', And although he living in th e
Lozi pnrn.molJ..I1t chi ef's vill age dyring hi s own he hi mself
mnde som:e1l8i Cl t'l Sfa rOYAl cOlmol by wprldng with memhers of tht:
I' ()yal family and promoting their inrerearll with I'@s l,ec: cto the t oto
These inf1uenGC8 uMvoi dAbly nffecred hi!! work.
Nevea hdess, both he liJ1cl the resenrrh officers found oeher wily!!
of entering the soci eties they \,,'oys that ,", ould allow them to
get .1 huger These strnregits tllied on two f RGrorS! the lengthy
and multiple periods of time these nmhropol ogists spent in the
and the movement that Wll S prescribed by the 1t t1 's gotl is for rhe
which that they spend n length of ri me in one
village during their first tour and then usc their second rom primarily
to move from one are.\ to another getting a sample of the r .. 111ge of
Vill age orgal1izational patterns. The resl!archers often moved about
d\ll'ing their first year. tl S w@il, to get a setlst' of rhe entire ,Hea or to do
on l(mgrhy in u smAll m1l11.hJ' of villll g'l
thlH might h lt V c' O!1tl' bl stil1g l\emrlJitl r.
ttl the fie ld after away For a wl'iri ng- uJ;> period also proved 9
jloo{\ M GonHng l' {J fhe M>lf Wi ckil\ " St: hUPOfl'l' S il dvi t:e W98
:= fhe ft eld anti Wh t' fJ you c{jjf\e btU1k tht!y' lJ )f UU li ke
1'l1I1I nT.! tl biliry m eiHel' jOGAI l11i-litip)g ways
Will! by who t' IH t1.r
cltl t;, thdr owrt fi J'lJi Gs r ry om unr; urel:visPs d wOI' k .
l\!!fore ]@iwing rhe M(lid .for the fir gt pc: ri od, GhlGlm,nli
:1t1villsct tl1am membert1 to mlin chdr imcr prCtt1f5 ro kN;j) of
nno inhidlU1J8 ii1 the!i'
he had clonc with hi s own in tIt
rlHH a plFll'1 ,,,'ould b61 imptnGtiGable
of fh. e need m 911porvi5c thQ I As met1tiol1!!d ea rlhH',
he hnci problems getring a n:liable interprerer/assistant) and his
JcrrcLs to Burnes refl ected the of hi s tltremprs to train
OtiC of hi s il1tei'pretc rs [() coll ect adequi.1 te demographic dorn, Other
fcscatchers trained their Assis tllnrs to keep diaries of
events fmd found ehen1 cnger fa GOl'ltri b l1tl' essnys nn various
of rheir QOtiC1fit"8: l 'hull , the reSl'GI'c; hers were lH1Qbl lld fo XftHl. d ti1 eit'
neJ,i of st udy be,roncl whar they rhemsl'ivl"IJ experi ence
ficl wwork. rhrmlgh rh is vicarious form of PI.u:fiGipant'observQrion.
The overg ll cCl rnp Arnri vc; regitl111'1 1f oe,:lll'l of the RLI to bOn"
stf1..1Ct the fk ld nm 011 ly nil a place of ii'lrerAGtion wirh I()cal p@ople
as of pWQut;tive inre lJl'!l:nlr, 1 rt hHi olllihipl:l with
orher Thi8 of R.u reol11wof.k c;\I:l'lll lopec;j our of n
cl kHlter of cxp",ricncE:$ J11fU1C Hp primaril y of gharing rellcnft!h (lb.
obs@tvil1. g Mch fi eld pt' nctk es
i:1.n. d cr!'l9ti ng commy
ni carion networ ks , Gluckman consciously arranged some of these
experiel1 ces; !'Ook place of omsi de factots or physical
:Hld go(; inl conciiriOiHI in Northern Thi:: direGtot :ll:rr'mged
die ini tial Lambu fi eld fmining session and the visit ro South Africa,
he visited SOni e of the researchers at theit fi eld sireii; and he required
thei r nftcnd;JnGt lH 11 Gcmfci'cnce when: they gQVe preliminn ty ,1C
(.;()U!1fS of tbeir resetH'ch !-lnd G.I' iriqued each nrher'9 metbods,n He nJ so
t; (i!ftui t1 ovorl1 l1. ftlr l%lch as tht requirement thot
,ill fe!lllil tHCI1 t'l' f4I;M I'Y Ollf H Il f'Jdy ('If lll ll!d t lllll\l'e 9.ll tlJ' ilf priori fY. all well
:tJ llercc d lHllO
fi tt0111 F!llllfC! e to th{J
df f R9i' fhe .i\jjlg
work tl1MrlEl ge amItHVtlfee, fen
l jtl l) IlL 1 dent tb t:Ji(" ItVJrl 9f:.i 1it'tSI i'l tlti
Ph yo III R inHl Hlill. l hll'l1ffil1!i IJ mln.i; whi Eli viti ]r@fi iHHj l1
j ami tJ1ldi' ;.i.lj't;p, t! y fi9m\-I llbhel:i E6
CGlrldift N l 3 ur jji N rmhel'i1 HUH fLl t't I1 G!f
'oll\!'ii llrtic<lfi tHl aintl11g fhe of fhli' th pOllml
service wl1i!J!i r1 !l nwI.'IJ f&il'ly ttll3tJ1l' GtJl'fl!!lIpOI"H:!af\ft{:' Mll1 a t nplt:i ly
ill1 pn l vl J'ig ttl1rlllfH,rhHiuh 'rhe rAFlRe bf rrlHHII'f)['f illducled
bll !5l% alld trHin!l jn a A f1.h\l of fli t bought
slIrpl u'; rn ll JU'l ry vehlslm: , \vf, kl'l\ 'Nifh PUl'I[Wtlf per-
"" - ........ .... . . . .... .J' - ... ... . r ..,' " ",'" Y .i1
rol ra tioning, made visiting ench other in the fi eld cnsle!' than would
hove been the case fm anthropologists worki ng in the interwar pe
riod, 9I The Institnte's CoJoninl Development and Wt!lfAre s,'am nn,\
its 10<; 01 funding made it possible to enlnrge the ItLI
librMY; which All owed the researchers Of; n p; roup "0 ieeeI' itl
with d ve Jopmel1t!l in rht' li ternf1.l re, ReGent 8C)\; ioiogy fwd arUhro<
poJogy books And journals cil'Guinted among tbe whil e iii
the fi ld, wht:e(;! of them wrote:: f@vi rws for ch@thItLI jOUfli t1 L
The jonrnnlj by in ntH:! orl1 er fnseirurc
I'Ubl1 r;lltiOl1s ifiititHed during W ilW r'1 iB dim(; COr'shir prnrrinted
cliIH\f.ed Wtll'l< thl; resMn: hers An d meshed them more firml y
il1to rhr smnH bOmmul1lry of Sl'! rrl !!I'SI mi lls ionni'iesj an d 11(;lmini srra'
,vhQ saw some vall1 e it! the iR!l Ue8 (, f
the jOtlrl1111 were ciomjnnred hy ndministt'ntor-f.hnogntphers' work;
partly Gl uckman could nor cali 011 professional .1nthropolo
gisf8 to contrihute durins the \Val." yeRrs. NQvenheless, throughout
history the jOU1'l:'Hl1'il fl.l1thors and the aUfhors of orht:t HI-I publiCtl
tions; such as the Papers and Communications, continued to ,reflect:
the types of people within Northern RhQcl eli ia with whom the r@
seai'chlH' S(;ould [,,1 1k about their interests - mix of adrninisn'arors\
missionuri s, and il few sclwbl'$ from the wider AfriCAn nnd Briti sh
l Gadll! thi c networks, ill' well some of th Afric.llt rescl1fbh f'lSl<is
mtm j:wd mher etl llbt1 r.en African!ol with nn irUt'r@5t !!1IiQcilaJ
"fhl!! mix of [intl fh t:1 1'l l1cl fHi'
(i f fhe dlt' gti l l for the i.11 1HIWH; fh
fj f(lause l<Ultura! fms tlQinl klH'Jwltl &\!J @ Wtl!l m j,i\'efj'"
m1e In tIl e colony; lmilmling tlMI h8 mArk: I:'IrI'Ul1ggtl1!!l1t9
f0r a ilUB!Ht woulE! IV!@p! of th(,l jmH'tHl l Wlfhlfl r'eal!ll'
{)ftl lL!i'
(j F 10(;a1invoh'@' ITWIH in j{Hltnll l :1hnumL 'fhe
ITI.CtH offiGl1r
,J , M, \Xlii1lllrhotrom (Whtlllk Utlpa rfi1'HWT
\'lith the nu aftil i' th11 1l1st ltutc oHiM!J
Upru'IH!;I ij frf' !11 the Mu!nmm) jointl y the (1f rhf:
j ourn:11 \y!fh GJuGJ< matl. The 1. 947 ilil'l uc, m l l11btt 5 l"Il t tn
the butpm of rhr j1eW - contt'llneci orri(dcj; by L. Sil
lJf.i ll!11iHi, a hmMr ICGtll rer jn at J, H, R,
f ' . ....... . , "I . , . i' ,..., ,' , 'f'\ rt
!\1IEt f1ll li Il l hl hlli-tilv:H flU!lf Al' II-! i!!Hlll' , sfilfltllJl g IWl't t
tu fiW lr MiftltH' lI
(':1!'l hliWt1 tk t> !J/1 rHH .. Cr\ltH in. !1 Vl li tle,'
.)-\ 1 t\,n 111\ (J:l j1nEfJ tN-Im.l.
! ), ln fl lH
Wi '(l'i'!1rr! l HI C\tlHlf! thlll ift fthEI1Eftl J' ll ylits
JtWm IltH:! c. n, L. NitiHtl ll Sj :j l1 Affi mit1
i f! t'hlt Itll" <if fillfhtm
MI t ti n I} fe"' llHiOl11i the t:![Ul' l!!t\ [Hl
:'It the H U'3 first t1f
j , O tH ! """ I " / ,
The RLI Rapids
On in LiviJ1/t{SWI1G the rtm:nn: hcrs beG:o me familiar with
structure of relRtions rhat the director had developed MOt11ld the, i u
headquarters, meeting the community of settlers, rniss iOlHlri e{ M.d
governmenr officers in the Institute's work. The hoodguar
rers was at first in the Museum building but later in it was
moved lnto a bllilding with a large ver.nl)iJah, shared
with officers of the government educati on deprmmem whil:h had nor
yet moved to the new capital of Lusaka, The c.lireceor hOl d developed
particu\;arly good relations with the education/officers and hired
some of their African derks and messengers for In.! work. The edu"
cation officers and n few other aciministl'lHOrS and ce'chnical officers
stlltjoned in Livingstone, along with a few local senl ers and tlducatlld
pr.ovided the audience for a serie1S of eveni ng tflll(s that
Gluckman had organized to promote .rhe Institute's work.
For the ordinary people of Livingstone drawn to these talks, the
iilttraction would have been in fin older understanding of
n collecfing epterprise GloSGly with ar
eh.tI\ fI(:1Ynlld mut!!!rinl Gylture diti p)nYIl in Indeed. the RI"T
hBU fl !'iWmu{) rl in fI johH
by on 8nrlil;lr of NOI'thcrn 'Fhlbtm YOll ng,
MI0 u8@d f'H' e!'l1 lsM of fi n alrtlGtly (I),<ll1t ing l11 W19Ui"l1 in
@hal' t! i' j ), At fh& hegll1!1itlg of 11l 'l rel1Hl' f i ll T9341 l'l ati
ItllHl@H Itl (Hid IhsHtute w tl h..
HtrupologYi arlt;i shmth.l ttJunci @r. in J;)avh:1
itle11lW'y, q9 A sf.H'!itf l fo fhls mlgh t
!lltve ft-Otl l Audrey i!1J1mmce 011 rh@gfWei't'lt11em,
all fJ'0t11 i!HeftHlf 1ft the ii Hett tB o f
Ni l AfrJeafts, by the J935 m'lkt:' Oft fhe
phlUS ft:l l' il1 thl Hlfi tnaft' iy i ll l:l
c_!IHm for for fl rt1\ll tldi8 l\ ipli nary Imi f:lw r, li!\ i nf: jusillg thll bit)
wldl all rh@sOC iA l ilb7i cnet'l! l ruul tile M!ci ftl t
into mmdertt f.'loI1t1itimu\ with a font!! t)li thl: 111 i111t'!N e(;1l11"
(li1iy t)f fl1 1:! }'OLH1.E1 eel tht:t Rhodes

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