Show Summary Details
Restricted access

Gramsci in and beyond resistances

The search for an autonomous political initiative among a subaltern group in the Beninese savanna

Riccardo Ciavolella

Keywords: Antonio Gramsci; capitalism; resistance; state; subalternity

Stemming from a Gramscian approach, this article engages with the anthropological debate about subaltern groups’ forms of resistance by using the case of marginalized Fulani groups of pastoral and nomadic origins in northwest Benin. Their experiences seemingly confirm contemporary theories on resistance, which emphasize subaltern people’s capacities to tactically circumvent exploitation and exclusion and to handle contradictions between different “moral economies.” Nevertheless, one should question the impact of small-scale reactions that remain on the infrapolitical level and the emancipatory role that political theories give to tactical forms of resistance of dispersed subjectivities while refusing collective strategies. Grounding Gramscian theories in ethnography, this article wonders about the possibilities and limits of margins to turn into the scene of an “autonomous political initiative” of a subaltern group.

Users without a subscription are not able to see the full content. Please, subscribe or log in to access all content.