The Tiv and Their Southern Neighbours, 1890-1990

by Emmanuel Chiahemba Ayangaôr

Tags: African Studies, African World Series

Table of Contents (PDF)

292 pp  $40.00

ISBN 978-1-59460-845-2
eISBN 978-1-5310-3007-0

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This book examines the economic, political and socio-cultural relations of the Tiv people of Benue State with their southern neighbours. In pre-colonial times, the Tiv, needing additional farm lands, began displacing their southern neighbours and settling on their farms. In retaliation, teams of Ogirinya headhunters targeted lone Tiv women and farmers.

The Tiv's answer to this loss of life was to adopt Ogirinya themselves, and clandestine mutual headhunting then became a standing blood feud that escaped the notice of the colonial administration for years. During an official inquiry into the causes of the 1985 Tsar-Obudu War, both parties confessed that Ogirinya was the main cause of their inter-ethnic wars. Once the leaders of the neighbouring local government areas agreed to ban Ogirinya and to set up a joint monitoring committee, peace returned to the borderlands.

In addition to the conflicts, Ayangaor also covers the intermarriages, friendships, pacts, and palm wine drinking orgies of these interdependent peoples.

This book is part of the African World Series, edited by Toyin Falola, Jacob and Frances Sanger Mossiker Chair in the Humanities, University of Texas at Austin.