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The White Man's Burden ? Practices of African Societies Causing Resentment from Europe


Korean Minjok Leadership Academy
International Program
Kim, Min Ju
Term Paper, AP World History Class, June 2011



Table of Contents


I. Introduction
II. Practices of African Societies
II.1 Female ¡°Circumcision¡±
II.1.1 Definition
II.1.2 Region and Practices
II.1.3 Historical and Cultural Context
II.1.4 Reaction of Europe
II.2 Scarification
II.2.1 Definition
II.2.2 Region and Practices
II.2.3 Historical and Cultural Context
II.2.4 Reaction of Europe
II.3 Cannibalism
II.3.1 Definition
II.3.2 Region and Practices
II.3.3 Historical and Cultural Context
II.3.4 Reaction of Europe
II.4 Polygamy
II.4.1 Definition
II.4.2 Region and Practices
II.4.3 Historical and Cultural Context
II.4.4 Reaction of Europe
II.5 Poison Oracle
II.5.1 Definition
II.5.2 Region and Practices
II.5.3 Historical and Cultural Context
II.5.4 Reaction of Europe
III. Conclusion
Notes
Bibliography



I. Introduction
            "White Man¡¯s Burden" is a phrase coined by an English poet, Rudyard Kipling. He wrote a poem titled "The White Man¡¯s Burden" in 1899 with the subtitle The United States and the Philippine Islands. At face value, it appears to be a rhetorical command to white men to colonize and rule other nations for the benefit of their people (both the people and the duty may be seen as representing the "burden" of the title). (1) However, another perspective on the poem suggests that it is a satirical writing, claiming that "The White Man's Burden" is in fact meant to parody imperialist attitudes.
            This paper looks at the so-called 'savagery' of colonized world, which served as the justification for White Man's Burden and imperialistic attitudes of westerners. Practices of African societies kept as traditions since long before the arrival of whites caused resentment in Europe for ethical reasons. Those practices were taken advantage of by Europeans as justification of their trafficking in Africa. I will explore the five African practices that were regarded cruel and savage: female 'circumcision', scarification, cannibalism, polygamy and poison oracle. The reaction of Europe to those practices will be contrasted with their historical and cultural context in Africa. The concept of cultural relativism will be introduced in conclusion with relevance to practices in Africa.

II. Practices of African Societies

II.1 Female 'Circumcision'

II.1.1 Definition
            Female 'circumcision' is defined by the World Health Organization as "all procedures that involve partial or total removal of the external female genitalia, or other injury to the female genital organs for non-medical reasons." (2) Female ¡°circumcision¡± is predominantly practiced in Northeast Africa and parts of the Near East and Southeast Asia, although it has also been reported to occur in individual tribes in South America and Australia. A group may perform it at infancy, before puberty, at puberty, with or without initiation rites, upon contracting marriage, in the seventh month of the first pregnancy, after the birth of the first child. (3) A number of assumptions are usually associated with the practice: that it is an 'ancient' and deeply entrenched practice, and that it is associated with initiation, with Islam, and with patriarchy.

II.1.2 Region and Practices
            Female 'circumcision' started in Africa approximately 2000 years ago. (4) This practice is so well ingrained into the cultures of the practitioners that it defines the members of the cultures. It is documented to have been in practice across a broad region of Africa, extending in West Africa from Mauritania to Cameroon, across central Africa, and in the east reaching from Tanzania to Ethiopia. It is not found in southern Africa or in the Arabic-speaking nations of North Africa, with the exception of Egypt.
            National boundaries are not all important in the regional distinction of the practice of female 'circumcision,' but it is better understood by ethnic groups. For example, the practice is prevalent among the 20 million Yoruba people of southwestern Nigeria, with the exception, in the case of female 'circumcision,' of two ethnic subgroups. Tribes close together geographically do not necessarily share the practice; for example, in Kenya the Kikuyu historically practiced excision, whereas the Luo did not; in Gambia the Wolof did not practice any form of female circumcision, whereas most other ethnic groups did.
            There are three methods of the practice. First, Sunna circumcision consists of the removal of the prepuce (retractable fold of skin, or hood) and /or the tip of the clitoris. Second, Clitoridectomy consists of the removal of the entire clitoris (prepuce and glands) and the removal of the adjacent labia. Third, Infibulation (pharonic circumcision) consists of performing a clitoridectomy (removal of all or part of the labia minora, the labia majora) and stitching up allowing a small hole to remain open to allow for urine and menstrual blood to flow through. In Africa 85% of female circumcision cases consist of Clitoridectomy and 15% of cases consist of Infibulations. In some cases only the hood is removed. (5)

II.1.3 Historical and Cultural Context
            Firstly, the relationship between female 'circumcision' (the physical act of genital cutting) and initiation (the educational period and rituals that traditionally accompany it) should be understood. Its practitioners look on female "circumcision" as an integral part of their cultural and ethnic identity, and some perceive it as a religious obligation. (6) For example, female "circumcision" practices among the Mandinga of Guinea-Bissau takes part in the overarching ritual of girls' initiation and the construction and transformation of religious identity and personhood. Moreover, many Gambian girls were 'circumcised' in the context of coming-of-age pedagogy and celebration, generally as one element of a rite of passage preparing young girls for womanhood and marriage. The ritual cutting is often embedded in ceremonies in which the girls are feted and showered with presents and their families are honored.
            Secondly, female 'circumcision' is in place to preserve patriarchal authority and control female sexuality and fertility. African tribes determine lineage tracing through fathers and thus female 'circumcision' functions to reduce the uncertainty surrounding paternity by discouraging or preventing women's sexual activity outside of marriage. Female 'circumcision' is more crucial to some tribal communities where the prospective husband's family pays a bride price to the family of the bride, giving his family the right to her labor and her children. A girl's virginity may be considered essential to her family's ability to arrange her marriage and receive a bride price, as well as to family honor. In this context, parents see both infibulations and early marriage as means of ensuring that their daughter remains "pure" and thus worthy of the bride price. (7)
            Thirdly, there is considerable social preconception and pressure that has been formed throughout history in reinforcing the tradition of female circumcision. In Man, a town in the interior of Cote d'Ivoire, a Yacouba girl who has not been circumcised is not considered marriageable. Among the Samburu of Kenya, who consider uncircumcised girls unclean, promiscuous and immature, girls are generally circumcised at age 14 or 15, usually just before they are married. A girl with a younger brother may undergo circumcision if she remains unmarried by her late teens, since custom dictates that a boy with an uncircumcised older sister may not be initiated into the warrior class. Girls' desires to conform to peer norms may make them eager to undergo circumcision, since those who remain uncut may be teased and looked down on by their age mates.

II.1.4 Reaction of Europe
            Opposition to female 'circumcision' was motivated by ethical concerns, for example, regarding the consent (or lack thereof, in most cases) of the patient, and subsequently the safety and long-term consequences of the procedures.
            In Kenya, missionaries present in the 1920s and 1930s forbade their Christianized adherents practicing female circumcision. In response, the practice became instrumental to the ethnic independence movement among the Kikuyu, the most populous ethnic group of Kenya; indigenous people reacted against what they perceived as cultural imperialistic attacks by Europeans. In 1956, pressured by the British, the council of male elders (the Njuri Nchecke) in Meru, Kenya, announced a ban on clitoridectomy. (8) The prohibition significantly strengthened the tribes' resistance to British colonial rule in the 1950s and increased support for the Mau Mau guerrilla movement.
            In the past several decades, there have been many concerted efforts by the World Health Organization (WHO) to end the practice. The United Nations has also declared February 6 as 'International Day of Zero Tolerance to Female Genital Mutilation'.

II.2 Scarification

II.2.1 Definition
            Scarification is the practice of incising the skin with a sharp instrument, (such as a knife, glass, stone, or coconut shell) in such a way as to control the shape of the scar tissue on various parts of the body. (9) It involves puncturing or cutting patterns and motifs into the dermis or upper levels of skin. When the cuts heal, scars remain. Cicatrisation is a special form of scarification, whereby a gash is made in the skin with a sharp instrument, and irritation of the skin caused by applying caustic plant juices forms permanent blisters. Dark pigments such as ground charcoal or gunpowder are sometimes rubbed into the wound to provide emphasis. These cuts, when healed, form raised scars, known as keloids. Scarification is widely performed across Africa as a cultural activity.

II.2.2 Region and Practices
            Scarification is an important body art for people of many sub-Saharan African cultures. Facial scarification is popular among many tribes in West Africa. Culturally, the practice dates back thousands of years, and has been used to identify tribes (forehead), families (cheeks), individuals (chins), and even to express personal beauty (accents on lines). The most complicated cicatrisation was probably found in the Congo Basin and neighboring regions, and among the Akan speakers of West Africa.
            A method of scarification traditionally used in Africa is called packing. In pacing, a cut is made diagonally and an inert material such as clay or ash is packed into the wound; massive hypertrophic scars are formed during healing as the wound pushes out the substance that had been inserted into the wound. (10)

Man with Scarification (11)


II.2.3 Historical and Cultural Context
            Scarification is regarded as an accepted cultural differentiator between the self and the other, or the civilized self and the natural self. It serves to distinguish the civilized, socialized human body from the body in its natural state and from animals. (12) For instance, among the Baule people of the Ivory Coast, scarification is the ultimate mark of civilization; without these designs, a person is not considered a member of the community.
            Moreover, scarification transmits complex messages about identity and social status. It serves as a boundary marker in terms of life stages; it is performed on girls to mark stages of the life process, such as puberty, marriage and so on. It is also believed to assist women in withstanding the pain of childbirth. Facial scarification in West Africa is used for identification of ethnic groups, families, individuals.
            Scarification may exhibit the enduring emotional states of the wearer, such as sorrow or well-being not to mention it serves to beautify the body. It has been speculated that tattooing never replaced scarification in sub-Saharan Africa because Scarification is more visible on Black skin than tattoos. The Tiv of Nigeria practice scarification primarily for aesthetic reasons, for scarification alters or enhances facial features. The Tiv claim the raised scars stay sensitive for many years and they produce erotic sensations in both men and women when touched or stroked. Men of the Tiv value women with raised scars as mates because they consider scarified women more sexually demanding and therefore, likely to bear more children.

II.2.4 Reaction of Europe
            The prevalent use of body markings was shocking to Europeans as they have used body marks to signify degradation and marginalization in contrast to many African societies where positive signs of identification and inclusion were procured by body markings. The pictures of scarification and procedures of it, especially of young children and women, elicited a great response from European societies for their immediate visual impact, and created shock and subsequent opposition to the savagery practiced by African tribes. (7a)

II.3 Cannibalism

II.3.1 Definition
            Cannibalism, also called anthropophagy, means eating of human flesh by humans. The term is derived from the Spanish name, Caribales, or Canibales for the Carib, a West Indies tribe well known for its practice of cannibalism. A widespread custom going back into early human history, cannibalism has been found among peoples on most continents. Though many early accounts of cannibalism probably were exaggerated or in error, the practice prevailed until modern times in parts of West and Central Africa, Melanesia (especially Fiji), New Guinea, Australia, among the Maoris of New Zealand, in some of the islands of Polynesia, among tribes of Sumatra, and in various tribes of North and South America. (13)

II.3.2 Region and Practices
            Cannibalism was practiced in parts of West Africa, Central Africa and less frequently East Africa. Fang people at the southern edge of Cameroon had a long history of cannibalism; they had cannibalism as a traditional custom. The people showed no reserve in discussing the customary procedures like the division of a corpse and the right of the king to a particular part of it with a foreign explorer, Du Chillu. When a villager was killed or died, his corpse was sent to another Fang village, for sale as food. Therefore, unlike other tribes, the Fang had few slaves because they were accustomed to eat prisoners taken in war. They even paid ivory and bought the bodies of slaves from other tribes for eating. (14)
            Azande, a tribe of north central Africa also practiced cannibalism. The Azande made no secret of their use of human flesh as nutriment. They spoke freely on the subject, telling the explorers that no corpses were rejected as unfit for food, unless the person had died on some loathsome skin-disease. Any person who died without relatives to protect his body was sure to be devoured in the very district in which he had lived. In times of war, any member of a conquered tribe was regarded as suitable for eating. It was much feared by its neighbors on account of its ferocity and addiction to the eating of human flesh. Interesting fact is that there were some who not only refused to eat human flesh but also would not take any food from the same dish as a cannibal. Even more addicted to the consumption of human flesh than the Azande and most cannibalistic of all African tribes was Monbuttu tribe near the source of the river Uele in Central Africa. (15)
            In southern Mali of West Africa, Bambala regarded as special delicacies human flesh that had been buried for some days and human blood boiled with manioc flour. The women of the tribe were forbidden to touch human flesh, but had found many ways of circumventing the taboo, and were particularly addicted to human flesh, extracted from graves and in an advanced state of decomposition. (16)
            The Bagesu tribe of East Africa practiced cannibalism as well. Unlike aforementioned tribes, the tribe kept the custom secret, and even members of the tribe were not permitted to look on during the ceremony, which was performed by night. Yet the custom was known to all. When a man died, the body was kept in the house until the evening, when the relatives who had been summoned gathered for the mourning. At sunset the body was carried to the nearest waste ground and deposited there. At the same time, men of the clan hid themselves in different places nearby and, as darkness deepened, they blew upon gourd horns, warning the young people not to go outside. When darkness set in, and it was felt to be safe to work without intrusion from inquisitive onlookers, a number of elderly women, relatives of the dead man went to the place where the body lay, and cut it up, carrying back the pieces they wanted to the house of mourning, and leaving the remains to be devoured by wild animals. For the next three, or sometimes four, days the relatives mourned in the house in which the death had taken place, and there they cooked and ate the flesh of the dead, destroying the bones by fire and leaving nothing. (12)
            Recently cannibalism has been reported in several African conflicts, including the Second Congo War and the civil wars in Liberia and Sierra Leone. It is usually directed against social or racial groups that are thought to be vulnerable, such as the Congolese Pygmies. Races who until lately do not seem to have been cannibals, though situated in a country surrounded by cannibal races, have, from increased intercourse with their neighbors, learned to eat human flesh.

II.3.3 Historical and Cultural Context
            It is suggested that the primary cause of cannibalism was the lack of sufficient protein food. However, this cannot justify cannibalism in most Central African tribes including the aforementioned Fang and Azande, since they were hunters and supplied themselves with sufficient meat. Mystery remains for the preference of human flesh to any other for these tribes.
            Cannibalism occurred during many wars in Africa, and war slaves were offered to the victors as source of nutrition. Therefore, cannibalism may have been in practice for easier gain of food and resources in times of desperation during or after war and for the intensification of the sense of victory.
            It is also reported by some that African traditional healers sometimes use the body parts of children in their medicine. Eating human flesh was believed by some African tribes as natural treatment. Some witch doctors still believe in magical healing effect of human flesh are thought to run black market operations to have access to human flesh.

II.3.4 Reaction of Europe
            Europeans who discovered evidence of cannibalism or heard of it were at first incredulous as to the incidence of eating human flesh in Africa. Paul Belloni du Chaillu, a French-American traveler, upon encountering cannibals in 1860s, recorded "I perceived some bloody remains which looked to me human but I passed on, still incredulous." (17) He sold 'cannibal skulls' to Natural History Museum after his arrival to Europe from Africa. To Europeans, cannibalism was a subject of both fascination and horror. The New York Times Article published on December 26, 1884 starts "Many readers have been inclined to doubt the frightful account of cannibalism." Without further explanation of the practice other than the discovery of "portions of two human bodies baking in a large brass ban" in Cape Coast Castle, the article states "the crime will, of course, be summarily put down" and concludes "we think plea of religion which is a better plea than that of hunger will not be admitted." (18) As much as it was hard to believe for Europeans, the practice was regarded savage and cruel.

II.4 Polygamy

II.4.1 Definition
            Polygamy is a marriage which includes more than two partners. When a man is married to more than one wife at a time, the relationship is called polygyny, and there is no marriage bond between the wives; and when a woman is married to more than one husband at a time, it is called polyandry, and there is no marriage bond between the husbands. (19)

II.4.2 Region and Practices
            Polygamy has existed all over Africa as an aspect of culture or/and religion. Polygamy was part of empire building since many African societies saw children as a form of wealth thus the more children a family had the more powerful it was. It was only during the colonial era that plural marriage was perceived as taboo. The diffusion of Islam to West Africa has counter-intuitively decreased the prevalence of polygamy in the region, due to restrictions on number of wives, but until then polygamy has been an integral part of all African societies.

II.4.3 Historical and Cultural Context
            In a culture where infant mortality is outrageously high and the average woman has fifteen children, most of whom do not survive, polygamy has been practiced to not only show a man¡¯s wealth, but also to assure the continuation of the man¡¯s family. It is also considered a strong indicator of a man¡¯s virility and need for sexual satisfaction.
            Men can also accumulate wives as a result of inheritance. If a man¡¯s brother dies, he would take over the family of his brother, including his wives. These women would be distributed among the surviving brothers, based on the preferences of the men and the widows of their brother. It is also common for a man to take the youngest wife of his father upon his death, and a father will take the wife of his son upon the death of his child. (20)This keeps the extended family together and guarantees that the children of the family are raised within the father¡¯s family.
            In the common African community, life is hard and women have long seen the advantages of having co-wives to help share the burden. This allowed a division of labor, in which there were more women to build the family home, which is considered a female responsibility, and other work. It also eased the burden of child bearing, as each wife was not carrying the burden of the family procreation alone.
            Women, also being in the position of being held responsible for the sex of their children, risked being returned to their parents for not producing children of the sex desired by their husband. Therefore, women were far more secure in a polygamous marriage where there was less attention on a single woman and the sex of her children. Being returned in disgrace to one¡¯s family not only was an embarrassment to her and her parents, but it was also a hardship as the bride price paid to her family had to be repaid.
            Other than familial reasons, polygamy may be explained in terms of group leaders creating political alliances and gaining control of recourses for their own communities. However, this kind of cases was rare.

II.4.4 Reaction of Europe
            Missionaries viewed polygamy as savage practice of male sexuality and lust rather than accommodation to social factors. Therefore, they condemned polygamy in Africa for both religious and ethical reasons. In Sub-Saharan Africa, there has constantly been a tension between the Christian churches' insistence on monogamy and traditional polygamy since the arrival of missionaries. (21)

II.5 Poison Oracle

II.5.1 Definition
            The poison oracle is a form of divination among the Zande in which poison is given to a fowl, and the divination is derived from the observed effects. (22) Benge is the 'Poison Oracle' used by the Azande of Central Africa, mainly in Southern Sudan, in which a decision is determined by whether or not a fowl survives being administered a poison. (23)

II.5.2 Region and Practices
            The Azande people live in a large area in the center of Africa, in the southwestern Sudan, north of Zaire and to the east of the Central African Republic. (24) Azande believe that witchcraft is at the base of all misfortune, great or small. They entertain no concept of accidental death. People die only as victims of murder, whether committed by witches or by the magic of revenge reserved for retaliation against suspected witches.
            Given the Azande people's pervasive anxiety about witchcraft and its varied manifestations, it is not surprising that they have developed numerous different forms of divination. The most powerful and accurate form is the poison oracle, Benge. This rite is performed outside the village, in the bush?untamed wilderness - with the participation of those who are actively involved in the consultation or are consulted as witnesses to it. A man without any special standing in the community, if he knows the required procedures and has respected the prohibitions against certain kinds of behavior - such as refraining from sexual intercourse for several days or abstaining from eating forbidden food, especially elephant meat?is selected to administer poison to a young chicken. After the group arrives at the location chosen for the divination rite, the suppliant addresses a question to the Benge, and the chicken is given the poison. The phrasing of the question is crucial; it must be neither too vague nor too specific. The Benge responds through the action of the poison: if the chicken is still alive, then the suppliant's suspicions may be allayed; but if the chicken dies, those suspicions are confirmed. After the inquiry and response, the poison is administered to another chicken to learn if the first response was accurate. Resolution of the suppliant's problem may require a series of questions and several chickens. Due to the costs, time, and people involved, Benge is used only for the most serious circumstances, such as the death of a family member, illness, barrenness, or accusations of adultery. (25)

II.5.3 Historical and Cultural Context
            In Azande life and thought, daily life practices are closely linked with witchcraft. When misfortune occurs?such as a granary falling on a group of people, or a failure in the hunt, or the onset of a physical ailment - an oracle is used to find out whether witchcraft is involved. In this respect, divination is a means of understanding present circumstances in connection with past events, especially in terms of the ways people are affected by those events. It is also concerned with future possibilities - for example, whether one should fear the intrusion of witchcraft on a journey that one plans to take, or whether the woman one wishes to marry will die early in life due to the power of a witch. It presents a framework to explain the occurrence of otherwise random misfortunes such as sickness or death, and the witch sorcerer provides an image of evil. Poison oracle can be understood as a part of supernatural and primitive belief in divination.
            Control over the poison oracle is held by older men and assure them power over young men and all women. In other words, in all legal cases Zande princess are guaranteed with enormous power. Therefore, the poison oracle serves as a male prerogative and is one of the principal mechanism of male control and an expression of sex antagonism. (26) For men say that women are capable of any deceit to defy a husband and please a lover, but men at least have the advantage that their oracle poison will reveal secrets.
            Furthermore, witchcraft may serve as an effective agent of social control. The lengthy process involved in making an accusation acts to forestall hasty and emotional confrontations. Charges must have group support behind them and are not leveled carelessly. An individual¡¯s behavior can be guided by the knowledge that wrongdoing might likely result in retaliatory witchcraft. Additionally, cognizance that jealous or hostile behavior might place one in a position of being suspect should misfortune occur might lead one to be quite circumspect. Wishing to be neither suspect nor victim, the Azande possess, in witchcraft, both an effective sanction against socially disruptive behavior and a vehicle for handling hostility. Because an individual with great wealth is likely to engender the jealousy of others and the attendant bewitchment, Azande are not likely to attempt to surpass one another. It is in this way that witchcraft acts as a leveling mechanism, indirectly keeping wealth balanced.

II.5.4 Reaction of Europe
            Missionaries settled in the Sudan beginning in the early part of the twentieth century and attempted to draw on indigenous beliefs as a way to promote Christianity. (27) However, attempts to convert Azande to Christianity inevitably involved replacing beliefs in the supernatural with a belief in a supreme god. Thus, poison oracle was challenged by Europeans in the process of converting Africa into Christianity.
            Evans-Pritchard, an English anthropologist in the 1900s studied Azande poison oracle and concluded ¡°They reason excellently in the idiom of their beliefs, but they cannot reason outside, or against, their beliefs because they have no other idiom in which to express their thoughts¡± to reveal logical fallacy by Azande. (28)

III. Conclusion
            The historical and cultural context in which the five African practices were performed explains their existence which may seem absurd from the perspective of outside. It should not justify the continuation of the practices but rather serve to provide background for better understanding of the practices. Until recently, Europeans have reacted to the African practices and resented them mostly without the consideration of their historical and cultural context or misunderstanding of it. According to the principle of cultural relativism, an individual human's beliefs and activities should be understood by others in terms of that individual's own culture. (29) Practices in Africa, female ¡°circumcision¡±, scarification, cannibalism, polygamy and poison oracle should also be understood in terms of the African culture rather than the western culture. Then can they finally be properly analyzed, studied, and guided.

VII. Notes
           
(1)      Wikipedia Article : White Man's Burden
(2)      Wikipedia Article : Female circumcision
(3)      Mackie 1996
(4)      Shell-Duncan, Hernlund 2001
(5)      Heitman 2000
(6)      Althaus 1997
(7)      ibid.
(8)      Wikipedia Article : Female genital mutilation, Section : Colonial Opposition
(9)      Rand African Art, Section: Scarification and Cicatrisation among African cultures
(10)      Heller 2003
(11)      Image 1: Man with scarification, from Photograph of the Herbert Hoover Presidential Library
(12)      Vogel 1986
(13)      Britannica Online Encyclopedia, Article : Cannibalism
(14)      Baker 1974
(15)      Hogg 2007
(16)      New World Encyclopedia, Article : Cannibalism, Section : Human Cannibalism
(17)      du Chaillu 1861 p.104
(18)      New York Times Dec. 26 1884, Article : Cannibalism in Africa
(19)      Wikipedia Article : Polygamy
(20)      Wadri
(21)      Evans-Pritchard 1937
(22)      Probert Encyclopaedia, Article : Poison Oracle
(23)      Wikipedia Article : Benge
(24)      McGraw-Hill p.2
(25)      Pemberton p.374
(26)      Evans-Pritchard 1937 p.238
(27)      McGraw-Hill p.8
(28)      Evans-Pritchard 1937
(29)      Wikipedia Article : Cultural relativism



Bibliography Note : websites quoted below were visited in Spring 2011.
All Wikipedia articles cited below are from the English version, except noted.

1.      Wikipedia, Article : The White Man¡¯s Burden, http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_White_Man's_Burden
2.      Wikipedia, Article : New Imperialism and Humanitarianism, http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/New_Imperialism#Humanitarianism
3.      Wikipedia, Article : Female circumcision, http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Female_circumcision
4.      Wikipedia Article : Scarification, http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Scarification
5.      Wikipedia Article Cannibalism, http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cannibalism
6.      Wikipedia Article : Polygamy, http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Polygamy
7.      Wikipedia Article : Benge, http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Benge

8.      Wikipedia Article : Cultural Relativism, http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cultural_relativism
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14.      Bettina Shell-Duncan, Ylva Hernlund. Female "Circumcision" in Africa: Culture, Controversy, and Change. Lynne Rienner Publishers. 2001
15.      Gerry Mackie. Female Genital cutting: The Beginning of the End. University of California, San Diego. 1996
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20.      John Roscoe, The Bagesu and Other Tribes of the Uganda Protectorate. The Royal Society. 1924
21.      Probert Encyclopaedia, Article : Poison Oracle, http://www.probertencyclopaedia.com/cgi-bin/res.pl?keyword=Poison+Oracle&offset=0
22      Metropolitan Museum of Art, Section: Art and Oracle: A Scholarly Resource of African and Rituals of Divination. John Pemberton III, http://www.metmuseum.org/explore/oracle/essay1.html
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26.      Helen Coleman, Scarification among African Cultures, 2002, http://www.randafricanart.com/Scarification_and_Cicatrisation_among_African_cultures.html
27.      Here Be Cannibals, Cannibalism in the African Congo, The Heretical Press Dictionary http://www.heretical.com/cannibal/congo1.html
28.      Article, Cannibalism in Africa, The New York Times, December 26, 1884
29.      Friends Revolution, Section: Azande Poison Oracle : Testing Witches, Lauren Axelrod, 2010 http://www.friendsrevolution.com/2010/10/azande-poison-oracle-testing-witches.html
30.      History of Circumcision : Section: Maori Mok. The Cultural Body Body Alterations & Scarification, http://www.historyofcircumcision.net/index.php?option=com_content&task=category§ionid=13&id=76&Itemid=6
31.      Chinua Achebe, Things Fall Apart. 1958
32.      Garry Hogg. Cannibalism and Human Sacrifice. Nonsuch Publishing
33.      Kim Hewitt. Mutilating the body: identity in blood and ink. Popular Press
34.      E. E. Evans-Pritchard. Witchcraft, Oracles and Magic among the Azande. Oxford. 1937
35.      Wikipedia Article : Female Genital Mutilation, http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Female_genital_mutilation
36.      Cartwright, Natural history of the prognathous species of man. New York Day- Book. 1857
37.      McGraw-Hill, The Azande: Witchcraft and Oracles in Africa, Section: Religion, Beliefs, and Expressive Culture, http://highered.mcgraw-hill.com/sites/dl/free/0073405302/594413/petersgolden5e_ch01.pdf
38.      Peter Wadri, Three wives and a Score of children, the African way. thecheers.org. http://www.thecheers.org/Culture/article_160_Three-wives-and-a-Score-of-children-the-African-way-.html
39.      Dan Heller, Scarification: Through the influence of Peace Corps volunteers, these and similar rituals, such as female circumcision, are experiencing reduced participation, Peace Corps Online. May 26, 2003 http://peacecorpsonline.org/messages/messages/467/2013791.html
40.      Frances A. Althaus, Female Circumcision: Rite of Passage or Violation of Rights ? Section: Introduction, Special Report, International Family Planning Perspectives, Volume 23, September 1997 http://www.guttmacher.org/pubs/journals/2313097.html

image 1 : Man with scarification marks. Africa, from Herbert Hoover Presidential Library , West Branch, http://www.uihealthcare.com/depts/medmuseum/wallexhibits/body/bodyalterations/bodyalterations.html#Scar

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