Gendered Mutualism in Southeast Africa: Personhood and Society in Deep-time Historical Perspective

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Speaker: 
Professor Raevin Jimenez, Department of History, University of Michigan
Event Date: 
November 20, 2023
Event Time: 
12:00pm to 1:30pm
Location: 
2239 Lane Hall
Event Accessibility : 
Lane Hall: Ramp and elevator access at the E. Washington Street entrance (by the loading dock). There are accessible restrooms on the south end of Lane Hall, on each floor of the building. A gender neutral restroom is available on the first floor.

Please join the Global South Gender and Sexuality Studies (GS2) Collective for a lunchtime talk by Professor Raevin Jimenez from the Department of History at U-M. Professor Jimenez's talk is titled "Gendered Mutualism in Southeast Africa: Personhood and Society in Deep-Time Historical Perspective."

Gendered Mutualism in Southeast Africa: Personhood and Society in Deep-Time Historical Perspective: This talk tells the story of the earliest Nguni-speakers - ancestors of Zulu and Xhosa speech communities - as they made their way out of the South African Highveld in the ninth century and across southeasternmost Africa over the next millennium. As they moved, they responded to a crisis in environment and society that left them disconnected from their ancestors and former neighbors, seeking new identities and relationships among Khoisan foragers. In a new multicultural space, increasingly diverse Nguni-speaking communities used rites of passage, gendered institutions, identities, and relationships to forge concepts and practices of morality. Gendered morality established ties between dispersed populations and among people without shared ancestry that in turn shaped ideas about power and belonging. In response to this history, I present the framework of gendered mutualism, in which gender emerged through unique speech patterns and social bonds neither universally available nor fully embodied.

Bio:
Raevin Jimenez is an assistant professor of History and former LSA Collegiate Fellow at the University of Michigan. Her work focuses on the pre-colonial history of southern Africa using interdisciplinary methods, including a specialization in comparative historical linguistics. She is currently completing a book about gender and community among South African Nguni-speakers in the ninth to nineteenth centuries. 


Lunch will be provided so please RSVP at this link by the end of day Sunday, November 12, and let us know if you have any dietary restrictions. Please note that while the event will be held in person, a Zoom link can be provided on request. Email us by 11/19 at rovelsqr@umich.edu or ssaluk@umich.edu and we'll send it to you.