In this penetrating and timely book, Anna Simons documents Somalia's impending slide toward anarchy. How do people react to a failing yet still repressive government? What do they do when the banks run out of cash? How do they cope with unprecedented uncertainty? These are some of the questions Simons addresses as she introduces the reader to Somalia's descent into dissolution from within the Somali capital of Mogadishu. Exploring the volatile mix or external interest in Somalia, internal politicking, and enduring social structure, she shows how cross-cultural misunderstanding and regroupment are key to explaining Somalia's breakdown at the national level. One aim of this book is to challenge broadly held assumptions about the content of nationalism, tribalism, and the state, as defined and debated by academics and as experienced by individuals. Another is to analyze the making of a pivotal moment in Somali history. Simons charts new ground in the study of the dissolution of a state at ail levels, shuttling back and forth between micro and macro frames, historical and everyday practices, and expatriate and Somali experiences.
Table of Contents
Introductions -- Introduction -- Mogadishu: The Hardship Post -- First Encounters -- Histories -- Involvements I -- Involvements II -- Into the 1980s -- Chronology (1988-1989) -- The Coming of July 14 -- July 14 and Its Aftermath -- Pastoral Ideology and Urban Realities -- "The Bush" -- Pastoral Principles -- Ties -- Moralities -- Tribalism -- Family to "Family" -- Marriage I -- Marriage II -- Divorce and Family Spread -- Meanings in Mobility -- Conclusions -- A Rigorous Ending -- Epilogue: No Ending