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Title: The identity, agency and political influence of al-Hakkamat Baggara women poets in armed conflict in Darfur, Sudan, from 1980s to 2006
Author: Musa, Suad Mustafa Elhag
ISNI:       0000 0004 2717 1379
Awarding Body: University of Bradford
Current Institution: University of Bradford
Date of Award: 2011
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This research explores the role of al-Hakkamat rural women poets in the context of armed conflict in Darfur, from 1980s to 2006. Utilising QSR NVivo7 software, the study analyses and interprets qualitatively collected data in the light of the posed research questions. Processes and attributes leading to the identification of al-Hakkamah, such as her singing and composing talents, are explored - from identifying and nurturing to fully constructing her role as a folk singer and agitator as well as a powerful social actor. Her nurtured personal and social identities reconstruct for her gender roles that are found to be both feared and revered by the community and appropriated by the government. She is found to respond effectively to situations ranging from gallantry (lauding), solidarity (lobbying) to downright belligerency (inciting). These roles exhibit robust and proactive gender roles and power relations in Darfur that enable women, not without historical precedence, to exercise their own identity, agency and political influence in an otherwise overwhelmingly patriarchal society. The study also reveals that the conflict of Darfur is rooted in the history of the neopatrimonial domestic politics pursued by the riverine ruling elites, marked by systemic failure to manage resource issues equitably between tribal and ethnic entities in Darfur. In such circumstances, al-Hakkamat agency is either volunteered or enlisted in the attempt to secure an advantage. In either case her agency is verifiably seen to bolster the hypothesis that rural women in Darfur exercise more power than their counterparts in rural northern Sudan.
Supervisor: Pankhurst, Donna T. Sponsor: Gordon Memorial College Trust Fund
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available
Keywords: Conflict ; Darfur ; Baggara ; Gender ; Women ; Identity ; Agency ; Influence ; Sudan ; Al-Hakkamat ; Rural women poets ; Gender roles ; Power relations