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Sous le regard des ancêtres... chez les Gbaya 'bodoe de Centrafrique

Abstract : The Gbaya 'bodoe think that Nature on earth is under the ancestors' exclusive control whereas the sky and the underworld are ruled by divinities that are only mentioned in tales. The author shows how people maintain a constant relationship with the ancestors in exchange for protection and help for getting game, an essential part of their food. At the same time, every one can be victim of sorcery which usually reveals personal conflicts. In both cases, speech will be used to undo the harm caused by the ancestors or by sorcery. To determine guilt or innocence, the Gbaya resort to ordeals in which the accused undergoes physical tests. In this case the body is said to speak. But it is only willingly that a person goes through an ordeal, thus getting an immediate response even if it leads to death. In gbaya land, punishment is in fact always brought about by ancestors.
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Contributor : Paulette Roulon-Doko <>
Submitted on : Thursday, May 14, 2015 - 7:20:20 PM
Last modification on : Saturday, March 28, 2020 - 2:15:04 AM
Long-term archiving on: : Tuesday, September 15, 2015 - 12:35:25 AM


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  • HAL Id : halshs-01152065, version 1


Paulette Roulon-Doko. Sous le regard des ancêtres... chez les Gbaya 'bodoe de Centrafrique. Verdier Raymond, Nathalie Kalnoky et Soazich Kerneis. Les justices de l’invisible, L'Harmattan, pp.463-478, 2013, Coll. Droits et Cultures, 978-2-343-00437-2. ⟨halshs-01152065⟩



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