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This programme consists largely of film which was specially shot in Nigeria for the Open University in the summer of 1970. The objective of the programme is to show that political activity takes pl...ace not only in nation states but in societies that for most of their political organisation are not dependent upon the modern nation state. In this context the Tiv of Nigeria was chosen as a case study of a stateless society. It was stressed that the Tiv is a part of modern Nigeria and has many of the institutions of the modern state; but it is also pointed out that the Tiv people have a political culture and political processes of their own that predate the Nigerian state, and are very different from those in other areas of Nigeria. The programme does not attempt to give a full or systematic account of the Tiv or their political system, it is rather an effort to give the student a feeling for Tiv political life. Change with continuity is stressed as an important part of Tiv life as reflected in their political entirety. This theme is examined in the egalitarian attitudes of Tiv political culture and the forms of organisation, like the lineage system, age sets, the market place, and the moot, that have evolved in order to establish order. The programme is written and presented by Dr Ruth Finnegan, Lecturer in Sociology at the Open University, and the film was shot by Frank Speed, who has wide experience of making films on anthropological subjects.
Metadata describing this Open University video programme
Module code and title: D100, Understanding society: a foundation course
Item code: D100; 26
Rights Statement:
Restrictions on use:
Duration: 00:24:27
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Producer: Francis Sealey
Contributors: James Barber; Ruth H. Finnegan; Joseph Suswam
Publisher: BBC Open University
Keyword(s): Dance; Tribal
Footage description: James Barber outlines the intention and the subject of the programme. Ruth Finnegan introduces the Tiv. Sequence of dance (the 'gburka' or military dance) Finnegan discusses briefly "change with continuity" which she isolates as being characteristic of the Tiv. Interviews with a Tiv, Mr. Abaagu and Joseph Suswam. Both discuss basic political attitudes of the Tiv. Suswam's comments are inherent with shots of Tiv elders in discussion. The shots of elders and of dancing continue, Finnegan commenting over. Finnegan explains that the unifying factor is a system of many sided group loyalty. Shots of compound and Yabo's house and of Yabo in conversation with members of his close family Shots of neighbouring compounds. Finnegan explains the kinship bounds which unite these other compounds with that of Yabo. Suswam explains the system of land ownership, the growth of villages and tribal names. Shots of Yabo talking to his family, of the Yabo compound and of the neighbouring compounds. Shots also of Northern Nigeria and of the country which the Tiv. inhabit. Abaagu and Suswam explain the descent of the Tiv tribe and of their particular families. Shots of two related but rival groups dancing; Finnegan explains what is happening over the film, and comments on the rivalry. Shots of age group clearing ground for agriculture; Finnegan comments on age sets as an example of a wider social grouping in the Tiv. Shots of the age set of young men relaxing after the work and in the market place. Suswam comments on age sets, and their responsibilities one to the other. Finnegan and Suswam discuss the importance of the market place cus being a place not only for buying and selling but also for the settling of disputes. Shots of the market and of a government court room with case in progress. Shots of a local moct to settle an internal dispute. Finnegan comments over. Finnegan sums up the programme. Shots of compound, market place and dancing, drum music over.
Master spool number: 6HT/70111
Production number: 00520_1226
Videofinder number: 3384
Available to public: no