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Dennis Masaka

In this article, I argue that individuals could be entitled to rights, outside those that are communally conferred, as part of the primary requirement of being ‘persons’ in the African communitarian set-up if the terms ‘person’ and ‘personhood’ are understood differently from the way they are currently deployed in the communitarian discourse. The distinction between these two terms is the basis of my thesis where clarity on their meanings could be helpful in establishing the possibility of ascribing rights outside those that are communally conferred. I argue that ontologically, a ‘person’ is prior to ‘personhood’ (understood in the normative sense) which is considered to find its fuller expression in a community and by virtue of this, I think that he or she is entitled to some rights outside those that are defined and conferred by the community. This is my point of departure in this article.

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Sentimentalising Persons and Things

Creating Normative Arrangements of Bodies through Courtroom Talk

Jonas Bens

The Prosecutor v. Ahmad Al Faqi Al Mahdi was the first case to be tried before the International Criminal Court (ICC) that dealt with not the killing of persons but the destruction of things. When Islamist insurgent troops from the north of Mali

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Liminality and Missing Persons

Encountering the Missing in Postwar Bosnia-Herzegovina

Laura Huttunen

political framing of their deaths. Of course, there are many other places beyond Bosnia and ex-Yugoslavia that have struggled with the issue of missing persons or continue to do so. There is also a growing body of research addressing the issue of missing

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Perspectives of (and on) a Comedic Self

A Semiotics of Subjectivity in Stand-up Comedy

Marianna Keisalo

.” In this article, I take the relation between stage persona and material—the jokes, more commonly referred to as bits or routines—as a starting point for developing a semiotic analysis of self and person in stand-up comedy. I distinguish between self

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Rights and Duties in Menkiti

A Response to Masaka's Objection of Menkiti

Vitumbiko Nyirenda

Dennis Masaka argues that individuals have rights outside those conferred by the community. The argument is a critique to Ifeanyi Menkiti’s view of personhood. He argues that Menkiti uses the word person and personhood as synonymous. Masaka makes a distinction between the two, where person is an ontological concept, and personhood is a normative concept. For Masaka, individuals have rights by virtue of being persons and not personhood. My approach to the paper is therapeutic. I argue that Masaka misinterprets Menkiti’s views. I argue that Menkiti does not allocate rights in his idea of personhood and as something conferred by the community as proposed by Masaka. This implies that Masaka’s view is not radically different from Menkiti’s.

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Sarah Horton

’s freedom to any extent. One must further note that the authentic person must, for ontological reasons, be in bad faith to a limited degree: the very nature of the for-itself is incompatible with a “perfect” authenticity that a priori excludes bad faith, so

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Valentina R. Dedyk

This article analyzes the morphological and semantic patterns of personal names found among Koryak-speaking people in the village of Middle Pakhachi (Oliutor Raion, Koryak Autonomous Okrug) in northern Kamchatka. Names are connected to the essence of a person, and are thus connected with beliefs about personhood, reincarnation, spirit attack, and sickness. Names are typically from nouns, but can also come from verbs or modifiers. They are often nominalized. Many names come from compounding roots, which is common to distinguish two individuals with the same name in the same village. Most names are gendered. Feminine gender is overtly marked, but masculine is not. Not all names have analyzable meanings apparent to ordinary speakers of the language, but names are thought to reflect the inner essence or character of a person.

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Laila Prager

The concept of nafs is frequently mentioned in the Qur'an and in post-Qur'anic literature, where it is identified with the idea of the soul and individual moral behaviour. Accordingly, this concept appears in a number of Islamised societies, although it is usually associated with a wide range of different, localised socio-cultural meanings and understandings. In the Alawi-Nusairy society of south-eastern Turkey, the notion of nafs is a polysemic focal concept that encompasses ideas and practices simultaneously relating to the person, the society and the cosmos as a whole. To understand these notions and values, this article analyses the way in which the Alawites/Nusairies conceptualise the emergence of the nafs within the overall process of procreation and examines local beliefs in rebirth, 'metempsychosis' and 'gendered' souls.

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Professionalizing Persons and Foretelling Futures

Capacity Building in Post-Earthquake Haiti

Kristin LaHatte

’ ( Eade 2007: 633 ) – it is easy to lose sight of the fact that within all these kinds, and at all levels of their implementation, capacity building efforts actually occur through persons. In this way, we can see capacity building as ultimately a process

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German Displaced Persons Camps (1945-1948)

Orthodox Jewish Responses to the Holocaust

Gershon Greenberg

Orthodox Jews in postwar German Displaced Persons camps experienced the Holocaust's rupture of God's covenantal relationship with history and the eclipse of sacred reality. They sought to recapture that reality, even though the continuity of tradition that held it had been shattered. This was done by voluntarily reviving tradition, as if by doing so the sacred could be invoked. Following momentary suspension, they sought to restore ethnic-generational purity and traditional ritual. They invested holiday celebration with Holocaust meaning. On the level of thought they expanded Israel's metahistory to include the unprecedented tragedy and intensified their own contributions of Torah and Teshuvah to the higher drama, and recommitted their trust that divine light was implicit to reality's darkness.