1st Edition

An African Aristocracy Rank Among the Swazi

By Hilda Kuper Copyright 1961
    270 Pages
    by Routledge

    256 Pages
    by Routledge

    Originally published in 1947 and reprinted with a new preface in 1961, this book is based on field studies and gives an account of the social organization of the Swazi, wiith special reference to the aristocratic structure of their society and the way in which birth and rank determine social relationships and activities. The book provides a historical picture of the Swazi and the part played by them during the period of European expansion in British and Boer conflicts in South Africa. The economic structure of a society based on agriculture and the influence exerted over every aspect of social activity by the conservative and aristocratic political hierarchy is analyzed and post-War changes and their effect upon the Swazi also reviewed.

    Part 1: Introduction and Historical Background 1. Introduction

    2. Conquering Aristocracies: 1. The Dlamini

    3. Conquering Aristocracies: 2 The Europeans

    Part 2: The Basis of Conservatism

    4. The Tempo of Peasant Life

    5. The Conservative Political Hierarchy 

    6. Ritualization of the King

    7. Choice of the Heir.

    8. Blood, Kinship and Locality

    9. The Age-Class System

    10. Wealth in the Peasant Society

    11. Individual Variability and Ritual

    12. Death as an Index of Rank

    13. The Drama of Kingship

    14. Conclusion


    Hilda Beemer Kuper (nee Beemer; 23 August 1911 - 1992) was a social anthropologist most notable for her extensive work on Swazi culture. She was Professor of Anthropology at  UCLA.