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Interesting article and a question about Luo (Kenya) culture

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  • Deborah Shepherd
    First off, I m primarily an archaeologist and am the first to admit that I didn t do all the cultural anthro study I could have when I was in school. The
    Message 1 of 8 , Feb 13, 2008
      First off, I'm primarily an archaeologist and am the first to admit that
      I didn't do all the cultural anthro study I could have when I was in
      school. The following article talks about Obama's Luo kinship ties.
      There's a comment about midway through:

      "Odinga, a Luo, told British Broadcasting Corp. radio that Obama's
      father was his uncle, and that Obama called him "in the midst of his
      campaigning ... to express his concern and to say that he is also going
      to call President Kibaki so that Kibaki agrees to find a negotiated,
      satisfactory solution to this problem."
      Gibbs said Odinga and Obama's father are from the same tribe, though he
      was not aware they are related."
      I've checked an ethnography on the Luo and couldn't find any strong
      emphasis on the mother's-brother relationship in the Luo family.
      Basically, the traditional culture practices bridewealth and accepts
      polygyny. Husbands have strong authority over wives. In rural areas,
      when a woman refuses to accept a marriage offer, it is possible to
      "ambush" one's desired wife, even against her will, and once she has
      been in the possession of the man's family, her own family will not want
      her back. They will only want the bridewealth payment.
      Nevertheless, I understand Odinga's comment to mean that after Obama's
      father showed little inclination to raise his son, the uncle stepped
      forward to be a moral influence in the boy's life. The journalist just
      didn't understand the African metaphorical way of speaking.
      Does anyone have an opinion?
      Deborah


      http://abcnews.go.com/International/WireStory?id=4102638&page=2
      Obama Family in Kenya Watches US VoteBarack Obama's Family in Kenya
      Watches New Hampshire Vote, Expresses PrideBy KATY POWNALLThe Associated
      Press
      KOGELO, Kenya

      Sitting in plastic chairs surrounded by chickens and barefoot children,
      Barack Obama's Kenyan relatives rejoiced in the early results from the
      New Hampshire primary.
      The candidate's uncle was pleased but cautious when he heard news on
      the radio of the initial encouraging signs for the family's favorite
      son.
      "Ah, that's wonderful," Said Obama declared, breaking into a wide grin.
      "But I don't want to jump just yet."
      Even after the results in New Hampshire showed Obama finishing a close
      second to Hillary Clinton, Said Obama remained optimistic.
      "He still stands a good chance. I don't think it's too much of a
      setback because there was a time he was trailing Hillary and if he was
      the kind of man who gives up, he would have given up then," the uncle
      said Wednesday.
      Kogelo, the western Kenyan village of Barack Obama's father, has been
      spared the political and ethnic violence that has erupted in Kenya after
      last month's disputed presidential election. But it's just 90 minutes'
      drive from a town where torched and looted buildings bear testimony to
      the clashes that have left more than 500 people dead, and the turmoil in
      Kenya, as well as his nephew's political success, were on Said Obama's
      mind.
      While the dispute is political, violence has pitted other tribes such
      as the Obamas' Luo against the Kikuyu of President Mwai Kibaki, who have
      long dominated politics and the economy in Kenya.
      If Barack Obama were in Kenya today, he would "work with the leadership
      to bring them to a round table and find a solution to the problems that
      have been ravaging the country," his uncle said.
      In fact, Obama's spokesman Robert Gibbs confirmed the senator spoke to
      opposition leader Raila Odinga for about five minutes Monday before
      going into a rally in New Hampshire.
      Odinga, a Luo, told British Broadcasting Corp. radio that Obama's
      father was his uncle, and that Obama called him "in the midst of his
      campaigning ... to express his concern and to say that he is also going
      to call President Kibaki so that Kibaki agrees to find a negotiated,
      satisfactory solution to this problem."
      Gibbs said Odinga and Obama's father are from the same tribe, though he
      was not aware they are related.
      Obama, speaking Tuesday in New Hampshire, said he urged that "all the
      leaders there, regardless of their position on the election tell their
      supporters to stand down, to desist with the violence and resolve in a
      peaceful way in accordance with Kenyan law."
      Obama was coordinating his efforts with the State Department, his
      advisers said, and has discussed the situation with Secretary of State
      Condoleezza Rice.
      He has also spoken with South African Archbishop Desmond Tutu, calling
      him during last week's Iowa caucuses in between satellite interviews
      with local Iowa stations. Tutu has been in Nairobi, the Kenyan capital,
      trying to secure an end to the violence.
      On his last visit to Kenya, in August 2006, Obama touched on themes not
      normally debated openly here, criticizing the high-level corruption and
      the tribal politics that have dominated the country since its 1963
      independence from Britain. Both have played a role in the post-election
      violence.
      "Very many people sat up and listened, but the government didn't like
      it," Said Obama said of his nephew's speech, which was televised
      nationwide. "It touched a nerve they didn't want touched. The corruption
      is endemic here and tribalism cannot escape your eyes you just have to
      look at the government ministries."
      In his speech, Barack Obama said: "Corruption is not a new problem;
      it's not just a Kenyan or African problem. It's a human problem. ...
      While corruption is a problem we all share, here in Kenya it is a crisis
      robbing an honest people of the opportunities they have fought for and
      deserve."
      "Ethnic-based tribal politics have to stop," he said, to applause from
      university students and staff.
      Obama's relatives, gathered Tuesday in the family compound at the end
      of a dusty dirt road lined with mimosa and mango trees, listened for
      news of their American relative's election fortunes.
      Inside his grandmother's cinderblock home, framed photos of Obama's
      2006 visit and an earlier one in 1987 lined the walls, alongside a
      signed election poster from his Senate race. Sarah Hussein Obama,
      wearing a brightly patterned dress and sandals decorated with shells and
      beads, sat in a wooden chair in the immaculate living room, waiting for
      news of her grandson.
      Obama's father, also named Barack Obama, won a scholarship to a
      university in Hawaii, where he met and married the candidate's American
      mother. The two separated and Obama's father returned to Kenya, where he
      worked as a government economist until he died in a car crash in 1982.
      His white-tiled grave is located in a secluded corner of the family
      compound.
      The younger Obama was mostly raised in Hawaii and did not know his
      father well, but his presidential bid has sparked excitement in Kenya.
      Thousands were drawn to his appearances during his 2006 visit.
      Said Obama said his nephew "has proved to be a beacon of hope here and
      shown that even in difficult circumstances you can make it to the
      highest height of achievement with just determination and hard work."
      If Obama is elected, he would improve relations between Africa and
      America because he had his roots in Africa, his uncle said.

      Associated Press writer Nedra Pickler contributed to this report from
      New Hampshire.


      Copyright 2008 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material
      may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.
      Copyright © 2008 ABC News Internet Ventures
      Deborah J. Shepherd, Ph.D.
      Anthropology
      Anoka-Ramsey Community College
      Coon Rapids Campus
      deborah.shepherd@...
      http://webs.anokaramsey.edu/shepherd/
      http://webs.anokaramsey.edu/sacc
      phone number: 763-433-1195


      [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
    • Lloyd Miller
      Deborah, I think Odinga meant that Obama s father was his (Odinga s) uncle, and that Obama called him (Odinga) during the campaign (since he—Odinga—is the
      Message 2 of 8 , Feb 13, 2008
        Deborah, I think Odinga meant that Obama's father was his (Odinga's)
        uncle, and that Obama called him (Odinga) during the campaign (since
        he�Odinga�is the opposition leader) and that Obama plans also to call
        President Kibaki. In other words, Obama is trying to negotiate a
        peace between the factions and is trying to influence his relative,
        Odinga. Judging from the NYT op ed piece that Ann Popplestone
        posted, I think it'll be an uphill battle.
        Lloyd



        On Feb 13, 2008, at 4:32 PM, Deborah Shepherd wrote:

        > First off, I'm primarily an archaeologist and am the first to admit
        > that
        > I didn't do all the cultural anthro study I could have when I was in
        > school. The following article talks about Obama's Luo kinship ties.
        > There's a comment about midway through:
        >
        > "Odinga, a Luo, told British Broadcasting Corp. radio that Obama's
        > father was his uncle, and that Obama called him "in the midst of his
        > campaigning ... to express his concern and to say that he is also
        > going
        > to call President Kibaki so that Kibaki agrees to find a negotiated,
        > satisfactory solution to this problem."
        > Gibbs said Odinga and Obama's father are from the same tribe,
        > though he
        > was not aware they are related."
        > I've checked an ethnography on the Luo and couldn't find any strong
        > emphasis on the mother's-brother relationship in the Luo family.
        > Basically, the traditional culture practices bridewealth and accepts
        > polygyny. Husbands have strong authority over wives. In rural areas,
        > when a woman refuses to accept a marriage offer, it is possible to
        > "ambush" one's desired wife, even against her will, and once she has
        > been in the possession of the man's family, her own family will not
        > want
        > her back. They will only want the bridewealth payment.
        > Nevertheless, I understand Odinga's comment to mean that after Obama's
        > father showed little inclination to raise his son, the uncle stepped
        > forward to be a moral influence in the boy's life. The journalist just
        > didn't understand the African metaphorical way of speaking.
        > Does anyone have an opinion?
        > Deborah
        >
        >
        > http://abcnews.go.com/International/WireStory?id=4102638&page=2
        > Obama Family in Kenya Watches US VoteBarack Obama's Family in Kenya
        > Watches New Hampshire Vote, Expresses PrideBy KATY POWNALLThe
        > Associated
        > Press
        > KOGELO, Kenya
        >
        > Sitting in plastic chairs surrounded by chickens and barefoot
        > children,
        > Barack Obama's Kenyan relatives rejoiced in the early results from the
        > New Hampshire primary.
        > The candidate's uncle was pleased but cautious when he heard news on
        > the radio of the initial encouraging signs for the family's favorite
        > son.
        > "Ah, that's wonderful," Said Obama declared, breaking into a wide
        > grin.
        > "But I don't want to jump just yet."
        > Even after the results in New Hampshire showed Obama finishing a close
        > second to Hillary Clinton, Said Obama remained optimistic.
        > "He still stands a good chance. I don't think it's too much of a
        > setback because there was a time he was trailing Hillary and if he was
        > the kind of man who gives up, he would have given up then," the uncle
        > said Wednesday.
        > Kogelo, the western Kenyan village of Barack Obama's father, has been
        > spared the political and ethnic violence that has erupted in Kenya
        > after
        > last month's disputed presidential election. But it's just 90 minutes'
        > drive from a town where torched and looted buildings bear testimony to
        > the clashes that have left more than 500 people dead, and the
        > turmoil in
        > Kenya, as well as his nephew's political success, were on Said Obama's
        > mind.
        > While the dispute is political, violence has pitted other tribes such
        > as the Obamas' Luo against the Kikuyu of President Mwai Kibaki, who
        > have
        > long dominated politics and the economy in Kenya.
        > If Barack Obama were in Kenya today, he would "work with the
        > leadership
        > to bring them to a round table and find a solution to the problems
        > that
        > have been ravaging the country," his uncle said.
        > In fact, Obama's spokesman Robert Gibbs confirmed the senator spoke to
        > opposition leader Raila Odinga for about five minutes Monday before
        > going into a rally in New Hampshire.
        > Odinga, a Luo, told British Broadcasting Corp. radio that Obama's
        > father was his uncle, and that Obama called him "in the midst of his
        > campaigning ... to express his concern and to say that he is also
        > going
        > to call President Kibaki so that Kibaki agrees to find a negotiated,
        > satisfactory solution to this problem."
        > Gibbs said Odinga and Obama's father are from the same tribe,
        > though he
        > was not aware they are related.
        > Obama, speaking Tuesday in New Hampshire, said he urged that "all the
        > leaders there, regardless of their position on the election tell their
        > supporters to stand down, to desist with the violence and resolve in a
        > peaceful way in accordance with Kenyan law."
        > Obama was coordinating his efforts with the State Department, his
        > advisers said, and has discussed the situation with Secretary of State
        > Condoleezza Rice.
        > He has also spoken with South African Archbishop Desmond Tutu, calling
        > him during last week's Iowa caucuses in between satellite interviews
        > with local Iowa stations. Tutu has been in Nairobi, the Kenyan
        > capital,
        > trying to secure an end to the violence.
        > On his last visit to Kenya, in August 2006, Obama touched on themes
        > not
        > normally debated openly here, criticizing the high-level corruption
        > and
        > the tribal politics that have dominated the country since its 1963
        > independence from Britain. Both have played a role in the post-
        > election
        > violence.
        > "Very many people sat up and listened, but the government didn't like
        > it," Said Obama said of his nephew's speech, which was televised
        > nationwide. "It touched a nerve they didn't want touched. The
        > corruption
        > is endemic here and tribalism cannot escape your eyes you just have to
        > look at the government ministries."
        > In his speech, Barack Obama said: "Corruption is not a new problem;
        > it's not just a Kenyan or African problem. It's a human problem. ...
        > While corruption is a problem we all share, here in Kenya it is a
        > crisis
        > robbing an honest people of the opportunities they have fought for and
        > deserve."
        > "Ethnic-based tribal politics have to stop," he said, to applause from
        > university students and staff.
        > Obama's relatives, gathered Tuesday in the family compound at the end
        > of a dusty dirt road lined with mimosa and mango trees, listened for
        > news of their American relative's election fortunes.
        > Inside his grandmother's cinderblock home, framed photos of Obama's
        > 2006 visit and an earlier one in 1987 lined the walls, alongside a
        > signed election poster from his Senate race. Sarah Hussein Obama,
        > wearing a brightly patterned dress and sandals decorated with
        > shells and
        > beads, sat in a wooden chair in the immaculate living room, waiting
        > for
        > news of her grandson.
        > Obama's father, also named Barack Obama, won a scholarship to a
        > university in Hawaii, where he met and married the candidate's
        > American
        > mother. The two separated and Obama's father returned to Kenya,
        > where he
        > worked as a government economist until he died in a car crash in 1982.
        > His white-tiled grave is located in a secluded corner of the family
        > compound.
        > The younger Obama was mostly raised in Hawaii and did not know his
        > father well, but his presidential bid has sparked excitement in Kenya.
        > Thousands were drawn to his appearances during his 2006 visit.
        > Said Obama said his nephew "has proved to be a beacon of hope here and
        > shown that even in difficult circumstances you can make it to the
        > highest height of achievement with just determination and hard work."
        > If Obama is elected, he would improve relations between Africa and
        > America because he had his roots in Africa, his uncle said.
        >
        > Associated Press writer Nedra Pickler contributed to this report from
        > New Hampshire.
        >
        > Copyright 2008 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This
        > material
        > may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.
        > Copyright � 2008 ABC News Internet Ventures
        > Deborah J. Shepherd, Ph.D.
        > Anthropology
        > Anoka-Ramsey Community College
        > Coon Rapids Campus
        > deborah.shepherd@...
        > http://webs.anokaramsey.edu/shepherd/
        > http://webs.anokaramsey.edu/sacc
        > phone number: 763-433-1195
        >
        > [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
        >
        >
        >



        [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
      • Deborah Shepherd
        OK, I ll agree. The fact that the journalist made a point of adding Gibbs said Odinga and Obama s father are from the same tribe, though he was not aware they
        Message 3 of 8 , Feb 14, 2008
          OK, I'll agree. The fact that the journalist made a point of adding
          "Gibbs said Odinga and Obama's father are from the same tribe, though he
          was not aware they are related." was confusing. She made it sound like
          it really mattered! And her use of pronouns was sloppy (one of my
          pet-peeves). The "his" in the statement, "Obama's father was his uncle"
          should refer back to the subject of the clause, not of the previous
          clause. Harumph.

          >>> Lloyd Miller <lloyd.miller@...> 2/14/2008 12:10 AM >>>
          Deborah, I think Odinga meant that Obama's father was his (Odinga's)
          uncle, and that Obama called him (Odinga) during the campaign (since
          he—Odinga—is the opposition leader) and that Obama plans also to call

          President Kibaki. In other words, Obama is trying to negotiate a
          peace between the factions and is trying to influence his relative,
          Odinga. Judging from the NYT op ed piece that Ann Popplestone
          posted, I think it'll be an uphill battle.
          Lloyd



          On Feb 13, 2008, at 4:32 PM, Deborah Shepherd wrote:

          > First off, I'm primarily an archaeologist and am the first to admit

          > that
          > I didn't do all the cultural anthro study I could have when I was in
          > school. The following article talks about Obama's Luo kinship ties.
          > There's a comment about midway through:
          >
          > "Odinga, a Luo, told British Broadcasting Corp. radio that Obama's
          > father was his uncle, and that Obama called him "in the midst of his
          > campaigning ... to express his concern and to say that he is also
          > going
          > to call President Kibaki so that Kibaki agrees to find a negotiated,
          > satisfactory solution to this problem."
          > Gibbs said Odinga and Obama's father are from the same tribe,
          > though he
          > was not aware they are related."
          > I've checked an ethnography on the Luo and couldn't find any strong
          > emphasis on the mother's-brother relationship in the Luo family.
          > Basically, the traditional culture practices bridewealth and accepts
          > polygyny. Husbands have strong authority over wives. In rural areas,
          > when a woman refuses to accept a marriage offer, it is possible to
          > "ambush" one's desired wife, even against her will, and once she has
          > been in the possession of the man's family, her own family will not

          > want
          > her back. They will only want the bridewealth payment.
          > Nevertheless, I understand Odinga's comment to mean that after
          Obama's
          > father showed little inclination to raise his son, the uncle stepped
          > forward to be a moral influence in the boy's life. The journalist
          just
          > didn't understand the African metaphorical way of speaking.
          > Does anyone have an opinion?
          > Deborah
          >
          >
          > http://abcnews.go.com/International/WireStory?id=4102638&page=2
          > Obama Family in Kenya Watches US VoteBarack Obama's Family in Kenya
          > Watches New Hampshire Vote, Expresses PrideBy KATY POWNALLThe
          > Associated
          > Press
          > KOGELO, Kenya
          >
          > Sitting in plastic chairs surrounded by chickens and barefoot
          > children,
          > Barack Obama's Kenyan relatives rejoiced in the early results from
          the
          > New Hampshire primary.
          > The candidate's uncle was pleased but cautious when he heard news on
          > the radio of the initial encouraging signs for the family's favorite
          > son.
          > "Ah, that's wonderful," Said Obama declared, breaking into a wide
          > grin.
          > "But I don't want to jump just yet."
          > Even after the results in New Hampshire showed Obama finishing a
          close
          > second to Hillary Clinton, Said Obama remained optimistic.
          > "He still stands a good chance. I don't think it's too much of a
          > setback because there was a time he was trailing Hillary and if he
          was
          > the kind of man who gives up, he would have given up then," the
          uncle
          > said Wednesday.
          > Kogelo, the western Kenyan village of Barack Obama's father, has
          been
          > spared the political and ethnic violence that has erupted in Kenya
          > after
          > last month's disputed presidential election. But it's just 90
          minutes'
          > drive from a town where torched and looted buildings bear testimony
          to
          > the clashes that have left more than 500 people dead, and the
          > turmoil in
          > Kenya, as well as his nephew's political success, were on Said
          Obama's
          > mind.
          > While the dispute is political, violence has pitted other tribes
          such
          > as the Obamas' Luo against the Kikuyu of President Mwai Kibaki, who

          > have
          > long dominated politics and the economy in Kenya.
          > If Barack Obama were in Kenya today, he would "work with the
          > leadership
          > to bring them to a round table and find a solution to the problems
          > that
          > have been ravaging the country," his uncle said.
          > In fact, Obama's spokesman Robert Gibbs confirmed the senator spoke
          to
          > opposition leader Raila Odinga for about five minutes Monday before
          > going into a rally in New Hampshire.
          > Odinga, a Luo, told British Broadcasting Corp. radio that Obama's
          > father was his uncle, and that Obama called him "in the midst of his
          > campaigning ... to express his concern and to say that he is also
          > going
          > to call President Kibaki so that Kibaki agrees to find a negotiated,
          > satisfactory solution to this problem."
          > Gibbs said Odinga and Obama's father are from the same tribe,
          > though he
          > was not aware they are related.
          > Obama, speaking Tuesday in New Hampshire, said he urged that "all
          the
          > leaders there, regardless of their position on the election tell
          their
          > supporters to stand down, to desist with the violence and resolve in
          a
          > peaceful way in accordance with Kenyan law."
          > Obama was coordinating his efforts with the State Department, his
          > advisers said, and has discussed the situation with Secretary of
          State
          > Condoleezza Rice.
          > He has also spoken with South African Archbishop Desmond Tutu,
          calling
          > him during last week's Iowa caucuses in between satellite interviews
          > with local Iowa stations. Tutu has been in Nairobi, the Kenyan
          > capital,
          > trying to secure an end to the violence.
          > On his last visit to Kenya, in August 2006, Obama touched on themes

          > not
          > normally debated openly here, criticizing the high-level corruption

          > and
          > the tribal politics that have dominated the country since its 1963
          > independence from Britain. Both have played a role in the post-
          > election
          > violence.
          > "Very many people sat up and listened, but the government didn't
          like
          > it," Said Obama said of his nephew's speech, which was televised
          > nationwide. "It touched a nerve they didn't want touched. The
          > corruption
          > is endemic here and tribalism cannot escape your eyes you just have
          to
          > look at the government ministries."
          > In his speech, Barack Obama said: "Corruption is not a new problem;
          > it's not just a Kenyan or African problem. It's a human problem. ...
          > While corruption is a problem we all share, here in Kenya it is a
          > crisis
          > robbing an honest people of the opportunities they have fought for
          and
          > deserve."
          > "Ethnic-based tribal politics have to stop," he said, to applause
          from
          > university students and staff.
          > Obama's relatives, gathered Tuesday in the family compound at the
          end
          > of a dusty dirt road lined with mimosa and mango trees, listened for
          > news of their American relative's election fortunes.
          > Inside his grandmother's cinderblock home, framed photos of Obama's
          > 2006 visit and an earlier one in 1987 lined the walls, alongside a
          > signed election poster from his Senate race. Sarah Hussein Obama,
          > wearing a brightly patterned dress and sandals decorated with
          > shells and
          > beads, sat in a wooden chair in the immaculate living room, waiting

          > for
          > news of her grandson.
          > Obama's father, also named Barack Obama, won a scholarship to a
          > university in Hawaii, where he met and married the candidate's
          > American
          > mother. The two separated and Obama's father returned to Kenya,
          > where he
          > worked as a government economist until he died in a car crash in
          1982.
          > His white-tiled grave is located in a secluded corner of the family
          > compound.
          > The younger Obama was mostly raised in Hawaii and did not know his
          > father well, but his presidential bid has sparked excitement in
          Kenya.
          > Thousands were drawn to his appearances during his 2006 visit.
          > Said Obama said his nephew "has proved to be a beacon of hope here
          and
          > shown that even in difficult circumstances you can make it to the
          > highest height of achievement with just determination and hard
          work."
          > If Obama is elected, he would improve relations between Africa and
          > America because he had his roots in Africa, his uncle said.
          >
          > Associated Press writer Nedra Pickler contributed to this report
          from
          > New Hampshire.
          >
          > Copyright 2008 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This
          > material
          > may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.
          > Copyright © 2008 ABC News Internet Ventures
          > Deborah J. Shepherd, Ph.D.
          > Anthropology
          > Anoka-Ramsey Community College
          > Coon Rapids Campus
          > deborah.shepherd@...
          > http://webs.anokaramsey.edu/shepherd/
          > http://webs.anokaramsey.edu/sacc
          > phone number: 763-433-1195
          >
          > [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
          >
          >
          >



          [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]



          Find out more at our web page :http://webs.anokaramsey.edu/sacc/
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          [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
        • Johnson, Ellen C. K.
          Refer back is redundant, to get technical. Re- means back. ________________________________ From: SACC-L@yahoogroups.com [mailto:SACC-L@yahoogroups.com]
          Message 4 of 8 , Feb 14, 2008
            "Refer back" is redundant, to get technical. "Re-" means "back."



            ________________________________

            From: SACC-L@yahoogroups.com [mailto:SACC-L@yahoogroups.com] On Behalf
            Of Deborah Shepherd
            Sent: Thursday, February 14, 2008 12:37 PM
            To: SACC-L@yahoogroups.com
            Subject: Re: [SACC-L] Interesting article and a question about
            Luo(Kenya) culture



            OK, I'll agree. The fact that the journalist made a point of adding
            "Gibbs said Odinga and Obama's father are from the same tribe, though he
            was not aware they are related." was confusing. She made it sound like
            it really mattered! And her use of pronouns was sloppy (one of my
            pet-peeves). The "his" in the statement, "Obama's father was his uncle"
            should refer back to the subject of the clause, not of the previous
            clause. Harumph.

            >>> Lloyd Miller <lloyd.miller@...
            <mailto:lloyd.miller%40mchsi.com> > 2/14/2008 12:10 AM >>>
            Deborah, I think Odinga meant that Obama's father was his (Odinga's)
            uncle, and that Obama called him (Odinga) during the campaign (since
            he-Odinga-is the opposition leader) and that Obama plans also to call

            President Kibaki. In other words, Obama is trying to negotiate a
            peace between the factions and is trying to influence his relative,
            Odinga. Judging from the NYT op ed piece that Ann Popplestone
            posted, I think it'll be an uphill battle.
            Lloyd

            On Feb 13, 2008, at 4:32 PM, Deborah Shepherd wrote:

            > First off, I'm primarily an archaeologist and am the first to admit

            > that
            > I didn't do all the cultural anthro study I could have when I was in
            > school. The following article talks about Obama's Luo kinship ties.
            > There's a comment about midway through:
            >
            > "Odinga, a Luo, told British Broadcasting Corp. radio that Obama's
            > father was his uncle, and that Obama called him "in the midst of his
            > campaigning ... to express his concern and to say that he is also
            > going
            > to call President Kibaki so that Kibaki agrees to find a negotiated,
            > satisfactory solution to this problem."
            > Gibbs said Odinga and Obama's father are from the same tribe,
            > though he
            > was not aware they are related."
            > I've checked an ethnography on the Luo and couldn't find any strong
            > emphasis on the mother's-brother relationship in the Luo family.
            > Basically, the traditional culture practices bridewealth and accepts
            > polygyny. Husbands have strong authority over wives. In rural areas,
            > when a woman refuses to accept a marriage offer, it is possible to
            > "ambush" one's desired wife, even against her will, and once she has
            > been in the possession of the man's family, her own family will not

            > want
            > her back. They will only want the bridewealth payment.
            > Nevertheless, I understand Odinga's comment to mean that after
            Obama's
            > father showed little inclination to raise his son, the uncle stepped
            > forward to be a moral influence in the boy's life. The journalist
            just
            > didn't understand the African metaphorical way of speaking.
            > Does anyone have an opinion?
            > Deborah
            >
            >
            > http://abcnews.go.com/International/WireStory?id=4102638&page=2
            <http://abcnews.go.com/International/WireStory?id=4102638&page=2>
            > Obama Family in Kenya Watches US VoteBarack Obama's Family in Kenya
            > Watches New Hampshire Vote, Expresses PrideBy KATY POWNALLThe
            > Associated
            > Press
            > KOGELO, Kenya
            >
            > Sitting in plastic chairs surrounded by chickens and barefoot
            > children,
            > Barack Obama's Kenyan relatives rejoiced in the early results from
            the
            > New Hampshire primary.
            > The candidate's uncle was pleased but cautious when he heard news on
            > the radio of the initial encouraging signs for the family's favorite
            > son.
            > "Ah, that's wonderful," Said Obama declared, breaking into a wide
            > grin.
            > "But I don't want to jump just yet."
            > Even after the results in New Hampshire showed Obama finishing a
            close
            > second to Hillary Clinton, Said Obama remained optimistic.
            > "He still stands a good chance. I don't think it's too much of a
            > setback because there was a time he was trailing Hillary and if he
            was
            > the kind of man who gives up, he would have given up then," the
            uncle
            > said Wednesday.
            > Kogelo, the western Kenyan village of Barack Obama's father, has
            been
            > spared the political and ethnic violence that has erupted in Kenya
            > after
            > last month's disputed presidential election. But it's just 90
            minutes'
            > drive from a town where torched and looted buildings bear testimony
            to
            > the clashes that have left more than 500 people dead, and the
            > turmoil in
            > Kenya, as well as his nephew's political success, were on Said
            Obama's
            > mind.
            > While the dispute is political, violence has pitted other tribes
            such
            > as the Obamas' Luo against the Kikuyu of President Mwai Kibaki, who

            > have
            > long dominated politics and the economy in Kenya.
            > If Barack Obama were in Kenya today, he would "work with the
            > leadership
            > to bring them to a round table and find a solution to the problems
            > that
            > have been ravaging the country," his uncle said.
            > In fact, Obama's spokesman Robert Gibbs confirmed the senator spoke
            to
            > opposition leader Raila Odinga for about five minutes Monday before
            > going into a rally in New Hampshire.
            > Odinga, a Luo, told British Broadcasting Corp. radio that Obama's
            > father was his uncle, and that Obama called him "in the midst of his
            > campaigning ... to express his concern and to say that he is also
            > going
            > to call President Kibaki so that Kibaki agrees to find a negotiated,
            > satisfactory solution to this problem."
            > Gibbs said Odinga and Obama's father are from the same tribe,
            > though he
            > was not aware they are related.
            > Obama, speaking Tuesday in New Hampshire, said he urged that "all
            the
            > leaders there, regardless of their position on the election tell
            their
            > supporters to stand down, to desist with the violence and resolve in
            a
            > peaceful way in accordance with Kenyan law."
            > Obama was coordinating his efforts with the State Department, his
            > advisers said, and has discussed the situation with Secretary of
            State
            > Condoleezza Rice.
            > He has also spoken with South African Archbishop Desmond Tutu,
            calling
            > him during last week's Iowa caucuses in between satellite interviews
            > with local Iowa stations. Tutu has been in Nairobi, the Kenyan
            > capital,
            > trying to secure an end to the violence.
            > On his last visit to Kenya, in August 2006, Obama touched on themes

            > not
            > normally debated openly here, criticizing the high-level corruption

            > and
            > the tribal politics that have dominated the country since its 1963
            > independence from Britain. Both have played a role in the post-
            > election
            > violence.
            > "Very many people sat up and listened, but the government didn't
            like
            > it," Said Obama said of his nephew's speech, which was televised
            > nationwide. "It touched a nerve they didn't want touched. The
            > corruption
            > is endemic here and tribalism cannot escape your eyes you just have
            to
            > look at the government ministries."
            > In his speech, Barack Obama said: "Corruption is not a new problem;
            > it's not just a Kenyan or African problem. It's a human problem. ...
            > While corruption is a problem we all share, here in Kenya it is a
            > crisis
            > robbing an honest people of the opportunities they have fought for
            and
            > deserve."
            > "Ethnic-based tribal politics have to stop," he said, to applause
            from
            > university students and staff.
            > Obama's relatives, gathered Tuesday in the family compound at the
            end
            > of a dusty dirt road lined with mimosa and mango trees, listened for
            > news of their American relative's election fortunes.
            > Inside his grandmother's cinderblock home, framed photos of Obama's
            > 2006 visit and an earlier one in 1987 lined the walls, alongside a
            > signed election poster from his Senate race. Sarah Hussein Obama,
            > wearing a brightly patterned dress and sandals decorated with
            > shells and
            > beads, sat in a wooden chair in the immaculate living room, waiting

            > for
            > news of her grandson.
            > Obama's father, also named Barack Obama, won a scholarship to a
            > university in Hawaii, where he met and married the candidate's
            > American
            > mother. The two separated and Obama's father returned to Kenya,
            > where he
            > worked as a government economist until he died in a car crash in
            1982.
            > His white-tiled grave is located in a secluded corner of the family
            > compound.
            > The younger Obama was mostly raised in Hawaii and did not know his
            > father well, but his presidential bid has sparked excitement in
            Kenya.
            > Thousands were drawn to his appearances during his 2006 visit.
            > Said Obama said his nephew "has proved to be a beacon of hope here
            and
            > shown that even in difficult circumstances you can make it to the
            > highest height of achievement with just determination and hard
            work."
            > If Obama is elected, he would improve relations between Africa and
            > America because he had his roots in Africa, his uncle said.
            >
            > Associated Press writer Nedra Pickler contributed to this report
            from
            > New Hampshire.
            >
            > Copyright 2008 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This
            > material
            > may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.
            > Copyright (c) 2008 ABC News Internet Ventures
            > Deborah J. Shepherd, Ph.D.
            > Anthropology
            > Anoka-Ramsey Community College
            > Coon Rapids Campus
            > deborah.shepherd@...
            <mailto:deborah.shepherd%40anokaramsey.edu>
            > http://webs.anokaramsey.edu/shepherd/
            <http://webs.anokaramsey.edu/shepherd/>
            > http://webs.anokaramsey.edu/sacc <http://webs.anokaramsey.edu/sacc>
            > phone number: 763-433-1195
            >
            > [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
            >
            >
            >

            [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]

            Find out more at our web page :http://webs.anokaramsey.edu/sacc/
            <http://webs.anokaramsey.edu/sacc/>
            Yahoo! Groups Links

            [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]





            [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
          • Deborah Shepherd
            Well, at least it isn t ambiguous! Deborah J. Shepherd, Ph.D. Anthropology Anoka-Ramsey Community College Coon Rapids Campus deborah.shepherd@anokaramsey.edu
            Message 5 of 8 , Feb 14, 2008
              Well, at least it isn't ambiguous!

              Deborah J. Shepherd, Ph.D.
              Anthropology
              Anoka-Ramsey Community College
              Coon Rapids Campus
              deborah.shepherd@...
              http://webs.anokaramsey.edu/shepherd/
              http://webs.anokaramsey.edu/sacc
              phone number: 763-433-1195


              >>> "Johnson, Ellen C. K." <Johnson@...> 2/14/2008 12:39 PM >>>

              "Refer back" is redundant, to get technical. "Re-" means "back."

              ________________________________

              From: SACC-L@yahoogroups.com [mailto:SACC-L@yahoogroups.com] On Behalf
              Of Deborah Shepherd
              Sent: Thursday, February 14, 2008 12:37 PM
              To: SACC-L@yahoogroups.com
              Subject: Re: [SACC-L] Interesting article and a question about
              Luo(Kenya) culture

              OK, I'll agree. The fact that the journalist made a point of adding
              "Gibbs said Odinga and Obama's father are from the same tribe, though he
              was not aware they are related." was confusing. She made it sound like
              it really mattered! And her use of pronouns was sloppy (one of my
              pet-peeves). The "his" in the statement, "Obama's father was his uncle"
              should refer back to the subject of the clause, not of the previous
              clause. Harumph.

              >>> Lloyd Miller <lloyd.miller@...
              <mailto:lloyd.miller%40mchsi.com> > 2/14/2008 12:10 AM >>>
              Deborah, I think Odinga meant that Obama's father was his (Odinga's)
              uncle, and that Obama called him (Odinga) during the campaign (since
              he-Odinga-is the opposition leader) and that Obama plans also to call

              President Kibaki. In other words, Obama is trying to negotiate a
              peace between the factions and is trying to influence his relative,
              Odinga. Judging from the NYT op ed piece that Ann Popplestone
              posted, I think it'll be an uphill battle.
              Lloyd

              On Feb 13, 2008, at 4:32 PM, Deborah Shepherd wrote:

              > First off, I'm primarily an archaeologist and am the first to admit

              > that
              > I didn't do all the cultural anthro study I could have when I was in
              > school. The following article talks about Obama's Luo kinship ties.
              > There's a comment about midway through:
              >
              > "Odinga, a Luo, told British Broadcasting Corp. radio that Obama's
              > father was his uncle, and that Obama called him "in the midst of his
              > campaigning ... to express his concern and to say that he is also
              > going
              > to call President Kibaki so that Kibaki agrees to find a negotiated,
              > satisfactory solution to this problem."
              > Gibbs said Odinga and Obama's father are from the same tribe,
              > though he
              > was not aware they are related."
              > I've checked an ethnography on the Luo and couldn't find any strong
              > emphasis on the mother's-brother relationship in the Luo family.
              > Basically, the traditional culture practices bridewealth and accepts
              > polygyny. Husbands have strong authority over wives. In rural areas,
              > when a woman refuses to accept a marriage offer, it is possible to
              > "ambush" one's desired wife, even against her will, and once she has
              > been in the possession of the man's family, her own family will not

              > want
              > her back. They will only want the bridewealth payment.
              > Nevertheless, I understand Odinga's comment to mean that after
              Obama's
              > father showed little inclination to raise his son, the uncle stepped
              > forward to be a moral influence in the boy's life. The journalist
              just
              > didn't understand the African metaphorical way of speaking.
              > Does anyone have an opinion?
              > Deborah
              >
              >
              > http://abcnews.go.com/International/WireStory?id=4102638&page=2
              <http://abcnews.go.com/International/WireStory?id=4102638&page=2>
              > Obama Family in Kenya Watches US VoteBarack Obama's Family in Kenya
              > Watches New Hampshire Vote, Expresses PrideBy KATY POWNALLThe
              > Associated
              > Press
              > KOGELO, Kenya
              >
              > Sitting in plastic chairs surrounded by chickens and barefoot
              > children,
              > Barack Obama's Kenyan relatives rejoiced in the early results from
              the
              > New Hampshire primary.
              > The candidate's uncle was pleased but cautious when he heard news on
              > the radio of the initial encouraging signs for the family's favorite
              > son.
              > "Ah, that's wonderful," Said Obama declared, breaking into a wide
              > grin.
              > "But I don't want to jump just yet."
              > Even after the results in New Hampshire showed Obama finishing a
              close
              > second to Hillary Clinton, Said Obama remained optimistic.
              > "He still stands a good chance. I don't think it's too much of a
              > setback because there was a time he was trailing Hillary and if he
              was
              > the kind of man who gives up, he would have given up then," the
              uncle
              > said Wednesday.
              > Kogelo, the western Kenyan village of Barack Obama's father, has
              been
              > spared the political and ethnic violence that has erupted in Kenya
              > after
              > last month's disputed presidential election. But it's just 90
              minutes'
              > drive from a town where torched and looted buildings bear testimony
              to
              > the clashes that have left more than 500 people dead, and the
              > turmoil in
              > Kenya, as well as his nephew's political success, were on Said
              Obama's
              > mind.
              > While the dispute is political, violence has pitted other tribes
              such
              > as the Obamas' Luo against the Kikuyu of President Mwai Kibaki, who

              > have
              > long dominated politics and the economy in Kenya.
              > If Barack Obama were in Kenya today, he would "work with the
              > leadership
              > to bring them to a round table and find a solution to the problems
              > that
              > have been ravaging the country," his uncle said.
              > In fact, Obama's spokesman Robert Gibbs confirmed the senator spoke
              to
              > opposition leader Raila Odinga for about five minutes Monday before
              > going into a rally in New Hampshire.
              > Odinga, a Luo, told British Broadcasting Corp. radio that Obama's
              > father was his uncle, and that Obama called him "in the midst of his
              > campaigning ... to express his concern and to say that he is also
              > going
              > to call President Kibaki so that Kibaki agrees to find a negotiated,
              > satisfactory solution to this problem."
              > Gibbs said Odinga and Obama's father are from the same tribe,
              > though he
              > was not aware they are related.
              > Obama, speaking Tuesday in New Hampshire, said he urged that "all
              the
              > leaders there, regardless of their position on the election tell
              their
              > supporters to stand down, to desist with the violence and resolve in
              a
              > peaceful way in accordance with Kenyan law."
              > Obama was coordinating his efforts with the State Department, his
              > advisers said, and has discussed the situation with Secretary of
              State
              > Condoleezza Rice.
              > He has also spoken with South African Archbishop Desmond Tutu,
              calling
              > him during last week's Iowa caucuses in between satellite interviews
              > with local Iowa stations. Tutu has been in Nairobi, the Kenyan
              > capital,
              > trying to secure an end to the violence.
              > On his last visit to Kenya, in August 2006, Obama touched on themes

              > not
              > normally debated openly here, criticizing the high-level corruption

              > and
              > the tribal politics that have dominated the country since its 1963
              > independence from Britain. Both have played a role in the post-
              > election
              > violence.
              > "Very many people sat up and listened, but the government didn't
              like
              > it," Said Obama said of his nephew's speech, which was televised
              > nationwide. "It touched a nerve they didn't want touched. The
              > corruption
              > is endemic here and tribalism cannot escape your eyes you just have
              to
              > look at the government ministries."
              > In his speech, Barack Obama said: "Corruption is not a new problem;
              > it's not just a Kenyan or African problem. It's a human problem. ...
              > While corruption is a problem we all share, here in Kenya it is a
              > crisis
              > robbing an honest people of the opportunities they have fought for
              and
              > deserve."
              > "Ethnic-based tribal politics have to stop," he said, to applause
              from
              > university students and staff.
              > Obama's relatives, gathered Tuesday in the family compound at the
              end
              > of a dusty dirt road lined with mimosa and mango trees, listened for
              > news of their American relative's election fortunes.
              > Inside his grandmother's cinderblock home, framed photos of Obama's
              > 2006 visit and an earlier one in 1987 lined the walls, alongside a
              > signed election poster from his Senate race. Sarah Hussein Obama,
              > wearing a brightly patterned dress and sandals decorated with
              > shells and
              > beads, sat in a wooden chair in the immaculate living room, waiting

              > for
              > news of her grandson.
              > Obama's father, also named Barack Obama, won a scholarship to a
              > university in Hawaii, where he met and married the candidate's
              > American
              > mother. The two separated and Obama's father returned to Kenya,
              > where he
              > worked as a government economist until he died in a car crash in
              1982.
              > His white-tiled grave is located in a secluded corner of the family
              > compound.
              > The younger Obama was mostly raised in Hawaii and did not know his
              > father well, but his presidential bid has sparked excitement in
              Kenya.
              > Thousands were drawn to his appearances during his 2006 visit.
              > Said Obama said his nephew "has proved to be a beacon of hope here
              and
              > shown that even in difficult circumstances you can make it to the
              > highest height of achievement with just determination and hard
              work."
              > If Obama is elected, he would improve relations between Africa and
              > America because he had his roots in Africa, his uncle said.
              >
              > Associated Press writer Nedra Pickler contributed to this report
              from
              > New Hampshire.
              >
              > Copyright 2008 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This
              > material
              > may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.
              > Copyright (c) 2008 ABC News Internet Ventures
              > Deborah J. Shepherd, Ph.D.
              > Anthropology
              > Anoka-Ramsey Community College
              > Coon Rapids Campus
              > deborah.shepherd@...
              <mailto:deborah.shepherd%40anokaramsey.edu>
              > http://webs.anokaramsey.edu/shepherd/
              <http://webs.anokaramsey.edu/shepherd/>
              > http://webs.anokaramsey.edu/sacc <http://webs.anokaramsey.edu/sacc>
              > phone number: 763-433-1195
              >
              > [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
              >
              >
              >

              [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]

              Find out more at our web page :http://webs.anokaramsey.edu/sacc/
              <http://webs.anokaramsey.edu/sacc/>
              Yahoo! Groups Links

              [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]

              [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]




              [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
            • Lloyd Miller
              Technically you are right, Ellen, but you d have to retrace the etymological line to Latin to get to that meaning. Many if not most people would likely
              Message 6 of 8 , Feb 14, 2008
                Technically you are right, Ellen, but you'd have to "retrace" the
                etymological line to Latin to get to that meaning. Many if not most
                people would likely follow Deborah's usage because we use "refer" in
                the more general sense of "to allude to," etc. You'd be about as
                successful opposing this tide as you would trying to prevent people
                (including college professors and journalists) from splitting
                infinitives. I think we're simply the victims of Sapir's "language
                drift."

                Hang in there, though. After you retire, these kinds of
                technicalities will gently roll off your back without causing
                stress. After nearly 8 years, I'm even learning to boldly go and
                accept split infinitives!

                Lloyd



                On Feb 14, 2008, at 12:39 PM, Johnson, Ellen C. K. wrote:

                > "Refer back" is redundant, to get technical. "Re-" means "back."
                >
                > ________________________________
                >
                > From: SACC-L@yahoogroups.com [mailto:SACC-L@yahoogroups.com] On Behalf
                > Of Deborah Shepherd
                > Sent: Thursday, February 14, 2008 12:37 PM
                > To: SACC-L@yahoogroups.com
                > Subject: Re: [SACC-L] Interesting article and a question about
                > Luo(Kenya) culture
                >
                > OK, I'll agree. The fact that the journalist made a point of adding
                > "Gibbs said Odinga and Obama's father are from the same tribe,
                > though he
                > was not aware they are related." was confusing. She made it sound like
                > it really mattered! And her use of pronouns was sloppy (one of my
                > pet-peeves). The "his" in the statement, "Obama's father was his
                > uncle"
                > should refer back to the subject of the clause, not of the previous
                > clause. Harumph.
                >
                > >>> Lloyd Miller <lloyd.miller@...
                > <mailto:lloyd.miller%40mchsi.com> > 2/14/2008 12:10 AM >>>
                > Deborah, I think Odinga meant that Obama's father was his (Odinga's)
                > uncle, and that Obama called him (Odinga) during the campaign (since
                > he-Odinga-is the opposition leader) and that Obama plans also to call
                >
                > President Kibaki. In other words, Obama is trying to negotiate a
                > peace between the factions and is trying to influence his relative,
                > Odinga. Judging from the NYT op ed piece that Ann Popplestone
                > posted, I think it'll be an uphill battle.
                > Lloyd
                >
                > On Feb 13, 2008, at 4:32 PM, Deborah Shepherd wrote:
                >
                > > First off, I'm primarily an archaeologist and am the first to admit
                >
                > > that
                > > I didn't do all the cultural anthro study I could have when I was in
                > > school. The following article talks about Obama's Luo kinship ties.
                > > There's a comment about midway through:
                > >
                > > "Odinga, a Luo, told British Broadcasting Corp. radio that Obama's
                > > father was his uncle, and that Obama called him "in the midst of his
                > > campaigning ... to express his concern and to say that he is also
                > > going
                > > to call President Kibaki so that Kibaki agrees to find a negotiated,
                > > satisfactory solution to this problem."
                > > Gibbs said Odinga and Obama's father are from the same tribe,
                > > though he
                > > was not aware they are related."
                > > I've checked an ethnography on the Luo and couldn't find any strong
                > > emphasis on the mother's-brother relationship in the Luo family.
                > > Basically, the traditional culture practices bridewealth and accepts
                > > polygyny. Husbands have strong authority over wives. In rural areas,
                > > when a woman refuses to accept a marriage offer, it is possible to
                > > "ambush" one's desired wife, even against her will, and once she has
                > > been in the possession of the man's family, her own family will not
                >
                > > want
                > > her back. They will only want the bridewealth payment.
                > > Nevertheless, I understand Odinga's comment to mean that after
                > Obama's
                > > father showed little inclination to raise his son, the uncle stepped
                > > forward to be a moral influence in the boy's life. The journalist
                > just
                > > didn't understand the African metaphorical way of speaking.
                > > Does anyone have an opinion?
                > > Deborah
                > >
                > >
                > > http://abcnews.go.com/International/WireStory?id=4102638&page=2
                > <http://abcnews.go.com/International/WireStory?id=4102638&page=2>
                > > Obama Family in Kenya Watches US VoteBarack Obama's Family in Kenya
                > > Watches New Hampshire Vote, Expresses PrideBy KATY POWNALLThe
                > > Associated
                > > Press
                > > KOGELO, Kenya
                > >
                > > Sitting in plastic chairs surrounded by chickens and barefoot
                > > children,
                > > Barack Obama's Kenyan relatives rejoiced in the early results from
                > the
                > > New Hampshire primary.
                > > The candidate's uncle was pleased but cautious when he heard news on
                > > the radio of the initial encouraging signs for the family's favorite
                > > son.
                > > "Ah, that's wonderful," Said Obama declared, breaking into a wide
                > > grin.
                > > "But I don't want to jump just yet."
                > > Even after the results in New Hampshire showed Obama finishing a
                > close
                > > second to Hillary Clinton, Said Obama remained optimistic.
                > > "He still stands a good chance. I don't think it's too much of a
                > > setback because there was a time he was trailing Hillary and if he
                > was
                > > the kind of man who gives up, he would have given up then," the
                > uncle
                > > said Wednesday.
                > > Kogelo, the western Kenyan village of Barack Obama's father, has
                > been
                > > spared the political and ethnic violence that has erupted in Kenya
                > > after
                > > last month's disputed presidential election. But it's just 90
                > minutes'
                > > drive from a town where torched and looted buildings bear testimony
                > to
                > > the clashes that have left more than 500 people dead, and the
                > > turmoil in
                > > Kenya, as well as his nephew's political success, were on Said
                > Obama's
                > > mind.
                > > While the dispute is political, violence has pitted other tribes
                > such
                > > as the Obamas' Luo against the Kikuyu of President Mwai Kibaki, who
                >
                > > have
                > > long dominated politics and the economy in Kenya.
                > > If Barack Obama were in Kenya today, he would "work with the
                > > leadership
                > > to bring them to a round table and find a solution to the problems
                > > that
                > > have been ravaging the country," his uncle said.
                > > In fact, Obama's spokesman Robert Gibbs confirmed the senator spoke
                > to
                > > opposition leader Raila Odinga for about five minutes Monday before
                > > going into a rally in New Hampshire.
                > > Odinga, a Luo, told British Broadcasting Corp. radio that Obama's
                > > father was his uncle, and that Obama called him "in the midst of his
                > > campaigning ... to express his concern and to say that he is also
                > > going
                > > to call President Kibaki so that Kibaki agrees to find a negotiated,
                > > satisfactory solution to this problem."
                > > Gibbs said Odinga and Obama's father are from the same tribe,
                > > though he
                > > was not aware they are related.
                > > Obama, speaking Tuesday in New Hampshire, said he urged that "all
                > the
                > > leaders there, regardless of their position on the election tell
                > their
                > > supporters to stand down, to desist with the violence and resolve in
                > a
                > > peaceful way in accordance with Kenyan law."
                > > Obama was coordinating his efforts with the State Department, his
                > > advisers said, and has discussed the situation with Secretary of
                > State
                > > Condoleezza Rice.
                > > He has also spoken with South African Archbishop Desmond Tutu,
                > calling
                > > him during last week's Iowa caucuses in between satellite interviews
                > > with local Iowa stations. Tutu has been in Nairobi, the Kenyan
                > > capital,
                > > trying to secure an end to the violence.
                > > On his last visit to Kenya, in August 2006, Obama touched on themes
                >
                > > not
                > > normally debated openly here, criticizing the high-level corruption
                >
                > > and
                > > the tribal politics that have dominated the country since its 1963
                > > independence from Britain. Both have played a role in the post-
                > > election
                > > violence.
                > > "Very many people sat up and listened, but the government didn't
                > like
                > > it," Said Obama said of his nephew's speech, which was televised
                > > nationwide. "It touched a nerve they didn't want touched. The
                > > corruption
                > > is endemic here and tribalism cannot escape your eyes you just have
                > to
                > > look at the government ministries."
                > > In his speech, Barack Obama said: "Corruption is not a new problem;
                > > it's not just a Kenyan or African problem. It's a human problem. ...
                > > While corruption is a problem we all share, here in Kenya it is a
                > > crisis
                > > robbing an honest people of the opportunities they have fought for
                > and
                > > deserve."
                > > "Ethnic-based tribal politics have to stop," he said, to applause
                > from
                > > university students and staff.
                > > Obama's relatives, gathered Tuesday in the family compound at the
                > end
                > > of a dusty dirt road lined with mimosa and mango trees, listened for
                > > news of their American relative's election fortunes.
                > > Inside his grandmother's cinderblock home, framed photos of Obama's
                > > 2006 visit and an earlier one in 1987 lined the walls, alongside a
                > > signed election poster from his Senate race. Sarah Hussein Obama,
                > > wearing a brightly patterned dress and sandals decorated with
                > > shells and
                > > beads, sat in a wooden chair in the immaculate living room, waiting
                >
                > > for
                > > news of her grandson.
                > > Obama's father, also named Barack Obama, won a scholarship to a
                > > university in Hawaii, where he met and married the candidate's
                > > American
                > > mother. The two separated and Obama's father returned to Kenya,
                > > where he
                > > worked as a government economist until he died in a car crash in
                > 1982.
                > > His white-tiled grave is located in a secluded corner of the family
                > > compound.
                > > The younger Obama was mostly raised in Hawaii and did not know his
                > > father well, but his presidential bid has sparked excitement in
                > Kenya.
                > > Thousands were drawn to his appearances during his 2006 visit.
                > > Said Obama said his nephew "has proved to be a beacon of hope here
                > and
                > > shown that even in difficult circumstances you can make it to the
                > > highest height of achievement with just determination and hard
                > work."
                > > If Obama is elected, he would improve relations between Africa and
                > > America because he had his roots in Africa, his uncle said.
                > >
                > > Associated Press writer Nedra Pickler contributed to this report
                > from
                > > New Hampshire.
                > >
                > > Copyright 2008 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This
                > > material
                > > may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.
                > > Copyright (c) 2008 ABC News Internet Ventures
                > > Deborah J. Shepherd, Ph.D.
                > > Anthropology
                > > Anoka-Ramsey Community College
                > > Coon Rapids Campus
                > > deborah.shepherd@...
                > <mailto:deborah.shepherd%40anokaramsey.edu>
                > > http://webs.anokaramsey.edu/shepherd/
                > <http://webs.anokaramsey.edu/shepherd/>
                > > http://webs.anokaramsey.edu/sacc <http://webs.anokaramsey.edu/sacc>
                > > phone number: 763-433-1195
                > >
                > > [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
                > >
                > >
                > >
                >
                > [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
                >
                > Find out more at our web page :http://webs.anokaramsey.edu/sacc/
                > <http://webs.anokaramsey.edu/sacc/>
                > Yahoo! Groups Links
                >
                > [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
                >
                > [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
                >
                >
                >



                [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
              • George Thomas
                Journalism has indeed gone the way of the split infinitive, having drifted that direction long ago. The Associated Press guide to usage provides the Star Trek
                Message 7 of 8 , Feb 15, 2008
                  Journalism has indeed gone the way of the split infinitive, having drifted that direction long ago. The Associated Press guide to usage provides the Star Trek example ("To boldly go..." it must be the universal example du every jour), and explains that in many cases splitting the infinitive (1) flows better and (2) is actually more understandable.
                  Some, chiefly academics who write often and who correct papers regularly, become exercised over this, and choose boldly to go forth to champion excruciatingly correct grammar.
                  I fall between the camps, choosing the diplomatic route.
                  The original example appeared to illustrate a case of obscured/disrupted meaning, by which what was meant was not clearly conveyed. That's usually a more serious problem. It depends on what the meaning of "his" is.
                  G


                  Re: Interesting article and a question about Luo(Kenya) culture
                  Posted by: "Lloyd Miller" lloyd.miller@...
                  Date: Thu Feb 14, 2008 11:08 am ((PST))

                  Technically you are right, Ellen, but you'd have to "retrace" the
                  etymological line to Latin to get to that meaning. Many if not most
                  people would likely follow Deborah's usage because we use "refer" in
                  the more general sense of "to allude to," etc. You'd be about as
                  successful opposing this tide as you would trying to prevent people
                  (including college professors and journalists) from splitting
                  infinitives. I think we're simply the victims of Sapir's "language
                  drift."

                  Hang in there, though. After you retire, these kinds of
                  technicalities will gently roll off your back without causing
                  stress. After nearly 8 years, I'm even learning to boldly go and
                  accept split infinitives!

                  Lloyd



                  On Feb 14, 2008, at 12:39 PM, Johnson, Ellen C. K. wrote:

                  > "Refer back" is redundant, to get technical. "Re-" means "back."
                  >
                  > ________________________________
                  >
                  > From: SACC-L@yahoogroups.com [mailto:SACC-L@yahoogroups.com] On
                  Behalf
                  > Of Deborah Shepherd
                  > Sent: Thursday, February 14, 2008 12:37 PM
                  > To: SACC-L@yahoogroups.com
                  > Subject: Re: [SACC-L] Interesting article and a question about
                  > Luo(Kenya) culture
                  >
                  > OK, I'll agree. The fact that the journalist made a point of
                  adding
                  > "Gibbs said Odinga and Obama's father are from the same tribe,
                  > though he
                  > was not aware they are related." was confusing. She made it sound
                  like
                  > it really mattered! And her use of pronouns was sloppy (one of my
                  > pet-peeves). The "his" in the statement, "Obama's father was his
                  > uncle"
                  > should refer back to the subject of the clause, not of the
                  previous
                  > clause. Harumph.
                  >
                  > >>> Lloyd Miller <lloyd.miller@...
                  > <mailto:lloyd.miller%40mchsi.com> > 2/14/2008 12:10 AM
                  >>>
                  > Deborah, I think Odinga meant that Obama's father was his
                  (Odinga's)
                  > uncle, and that Obama called him (Odinga) during the campaign
                  (since
                  > he-Odinga-is the opposition leader) and that Obama plans also to
                  call
                  >
                  > President Kibaki. In other words, Obama is trying to negotiate a
                  > peace between the factions and is trying to influence his
                  relative,
                  > Odinga. Judging from the NYT op ed piece that Ann Popplestone
                  > posted, I think it'll be an uphill battle.
                  > Lloyd
                  >
                  > On Feb 13, 2008, at 4:32 PM, Deborah Shepherd wrote:
                  >
                  > > First off, I'm primarily an archaeologist and am the first to
                  admit
                  >
                  > > that
                  > > I didn't do all the cultural anthro study I could have when I
                  was
                  in
                  > > school. The following article talks about Obama's Luo kinship
                  ties.
                  > > There's a comment about midway through:
                  > >
                  > > "Odinga, a Luo, told British Broadcasting Corp. radio that
                  Obama's
                  > > father was his uncle, and that Obama called him "in the midst
                  of
                  his
                  > > campaigning ... to express his concern and to say that he is
                  also
                  > > going
                  > > to call President Kibaki so that Kibaki agrees to find a
                  negotiated,
                  > > satisfactory solution to this problem."
                  > > Gibbs said Odinga and Obama's father are from the same tribe,
                  > > though he
                  > > was not aware they are related."
                  > > I've checked an ethnography on the Luo and couldn't find any
                  strong
                  > > emphasis on the mother's-brother relationship in the Luo
                  family.
                  > > Basically, the traditional culture practices bridewealth and
                  accepts
                  > > polygyny. Husbands have strong authority over wives. In rural
                  areas,
                  > > when a woman refuses to accept a marriage offer, it is
                  possible to
                  > > "ambush" one's desired wife, even against her will, and once
                  she
                  has
                  > > been in the possession of the man's family, her own family
                  will not
                  >
                  > > want
                  > > her back. They will only want the bridewealth payment.
                  > > Nevertheless, I understand Odinga's comment to mean that
                  after
                  > Obama's
                  > > father showed little inclination to raise his son, the uncle
                  stepped
                  > > forward to be a moral influence in the boy's life. The
                  journalist
                  > just
                  > > didn't understand the African metaphorical way of speaking.
                  > > Does anyone have an opinion?
                  > > Deborah
                  > >
                  > >
                  > >
                  http://abcnews.go.com/International/WireStory?id=4102638&page=2
                  >
                  <" target=_blank>http://abcnews.go.com/International/WireStory?id=4102638&page=2>
                  > > Obama Family in Kenya Watches US VoteBarack Obama's Family in
                  Kenya
                  > > Watches New Hampshire Vote, Expresses PrideBy KATY POWNALLThe
                  > > Associated
                  > > Press
                  > > KOGELO, Kenya
                  > >
                  > > Sitting in plastic chairs surrounded by chickens and barefoot
                  > > children,
                  > > Barack Obama's Kenyan relatives rejoiced in the early results
                  from
                  > the
                  > > New Hampshire primary.
                  > > The candidate's uncle was pleased but cautious when he heard
                  news
                  on
                  > > the radio of the initial encouraging signs for the family's
                  favorite
                  > > son.
                  > > "Ah, that's wonderful," Said Obama declared, breaking into a
                  wide
                  > > grin.
                  > > "But I don't want to jump just yet."
                  > > Even after the results in New Hampshire showed Obama
                  finishing a
                  > close
                  > > second to Hillary Clinton, Said Obama remained optimistic.
                  > > "He still stands a good chance. I don't think it's too much
                  of a
                  > > setback because there was a time he was trailing Hillary and
                  if he
                  > was
                  > > the kind of man who gives up, he would have given up then,"
                  the
                  > uncle
                  > > said Wednesday.
                  > > Kogelo, the western Kenyan village of Barack Obama's father,
                  has
                  > been
                  > > spared the political and ethnic violence that has erupted in
                  Kenya
                  > > after
                  > > last month's disputed presidential election. But it's just 90
                  > minutes'
                  > > drive from a town where torched and looted buildings bear
                  testimony
                  > to
                  > > the clashes that have left more than 500 people dead, and the
                  > > turmoil in
                  > > Kenya, as well as his nephew's political success, were on
                  Said
                  > Obama's
                  > > mind.
                  > > While the dispute is political, violence has pitted other
                  tribes
                  > such
                  > > as the Obamas' Luo against the Kikuyu of President Mwai
                  Kibaki, who
                  >
                  > > have
                  > > long dominated politics and the economy in Kenya.
                  > > If Barack Obama were in Kenya today, he would "work with the
                  > > leadership
                  > > to bring them to a round table and find a solution to the
                  problems
                  > > that
                  > > have been ravaging the country," his uncle said.
                  > > In fact, Obama's spokesman Robert Gibbs confirmed the senator
                  spoke
                  > to
                  > > opposition leader Raila Odinga for about five minutes Monday
                  before
                  > > going into a rally in New Hampshire.
                  > > Odinga, a Luo, told British Broadcasting Corp. radio that
                  Obama's
                  > > father was his uncle, and that Obama called him "in the midst
                  of
                  his
                  > > campaigning ... to express his concern and to say that he is
                  also
                  > > going
                  > > to call President Kibaki so that Kibaki agrees to find a
                  negotiated,
                  > > satisfactory solution to this problem."
                  > > Gibbs said Odinga and Obama's father are from the same tribe,
                  > > though he
                  > > was not aware they are related.
                  > > Obama, speaking Tuesday in New Hampshire, said he urged that
                  "all
                  > the
                  > > leaders there, regardless of their position on the election
                  tell
                  > their
                  > > supporters to stand down, to desist with the violence and
                  resolve
                  in
                  > a
                  > > peaceful way in accordance with Kenyan law."
                  > > Obama was coordinating his efforts with the State Department,
                  his
                  > > advisers said, and has discussed the situation with Secretary
                  of
                  > State
                  > > Condoleezza Rice.
                  > > He has also spoken with South African Archbishop Desmond
                  Tutu,
                  > calling
                  > > him during last week's Iowa caucuses in between satellite
                  interviews
                  > > with local Iowa stations. Tutu has been in Nairobi, the
                  Kenyan
                  > > capital,
                  > > trying to secure an end to the violence.
                  > > On his last visit to Kenya, in August 2006, Obama touched on
                  themes
                  >
                  > > not
                  > > normally debated openly here, criticizing the high-level
                  corruption
                  >
                  > > and
                  > > the tribal politics that have dominated the country since its
                  1963
                  > > independence from Britain. Both have played a role in the
                  post-
                  > > election
                  > > violence.
                  > > "Very many people sat up and listened, but the government
                  didn't
                  > like
                  > > it," Said Obama said of his nephew's speech, which was
                  televised
                  > > nationwide. "It touched a nerve they didn't want touched. The
                  > > corruption
                  > > is endemic here and tribalism cannot escape your eyes you
                  just have
                  > to
                  > > look at the government ministries."
                  > > In his speech, Barack Obama said: "Corruption is not a new
                  problem;
                  > > it's not just a Kenyan or African problem. It's a human
                  problem.
                  ...
                  > > While corruption is a problem we all share, here in Kenya it
                  is a
                  > > crisis
                  > > robbing an honest people of the opportunities they have
                  fought for
                  > and
                  > > deserve."
                  > > "Ethnic-based tribal politics have to stop," he said, to
                  applause
                  > from
                  > > university students and staff.
                  > > Obama's relatives, gathered Tuesday in the family compound at
                  the
                  > end
                  > > of a dusty dirt road lined with mimosa and mango trees,
                  listened
                  for
                  > > news of their American relative's election fortunes.
                  > > Inside his grandmother's cinderblock home, framed photos of
                  Obama's
                  > > 2006 visit and an earlier one in 1987 lined the walls,
                  alongside a
                  > > signed election poster from his Senate race. Sarah Hussein
                  Obama,
                  > > wearing a brightly patterned dress and sandals decorated with
                  > > shells and
                  > > beads, sat in a wooden chair in the immaculate living room,
                  waiting
                  >
                  > > for
                  > > news of her grandson.
                  > > Obama's father, also named Barack Obama, won a scholarship to
                  a
                  > > university in Hawaii, where he met and married the
                  candidate's
                  > > American
                  > > mother. The two separated and Obama's father returned to
                  Kenya,
                  > > where he
                  > > worked as a government economist until he died in a car crash
                  in
                  > 1982.
                  > > His white-tiled grave is located in a secluded corner of the
                  family
                  > > compound.
                  > > The younger Obama was mostly raised in Hawaii and did not
                  know his
                  > > father well, but his presidential bid has sparked excitement
                  in
                  > Kenya.
                  > > Thousands were drawn to his appearances during his 2006
                  visit.
                  > > Said Obama said his nephew "has proved to be a beacon of hope
                  here
                  > and
                  > > shown that even in difficult circumstances you can make it to
                  the
                  > > highest height of achievement with just determination and
                  hard
                  > work."
                  > > If Obama is elected, he would improve relations between
                  Africa and
                  > > America because he had his roots in Africa, his uncle said.
                  > >
                  > > Associated Press writer Nedra Pickler contributed to this
                  report
                  > from
                  > > New Hampshire.
                  > >
                  > > Copyright 2008 The Associated Press. All rights reserved.
                  This
                  > > material
                  > > may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.
                  > > Copyright (c) 2008 ABC News Internet Ventures
                  > > Deborah J. Shepherd, Ph.D.
                  > > Anthropology
                  > > Anoka-Ramsey Community College
                  > > Coon Rapids Campus
                  > > deborah.shepherd@...
                  > <mailto:deborah.shepherd%40anokaramsey.edu>
                  > > http://webs.anokaramsey.edu/shepherd/
                  > <http://webs.anokaramsey.edu/shepherd/>
                  > > http://webs.anokaramsey.edu/sacc
                  <http://webs.anokaramsey.edu/sacc>
                  > > phone number: 763-433-1195
                  > >



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