n African Security Review - Understanding Somalia and Somaliland : Culture, history, society, Ioan M Lewis : book review

Volume 18, Issue 1
  • ISSN : 1024-6029
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The publishers could hardly have timed better the release of this new short volume by the doyen of Anglophone Somali scholars, Professor I M Lewis. For more than fifty years he has been writing authoritatively about Somali society and may claim to have set the pattern for studies that have dealt with the complex clan and identity dynamics that partially shape political life in the region. Indeed, there have been critics among younger generations of Somali scholars who have accused him of anthropological reductionism and of contributing to a view that sees Somali politics in terms of a violent and primordial social system.

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