Project Group D: Integration and Attachment, Project D9

Contested Autochthony. Land and water rights, and the relation of nomadic and sedentary people in South Kordofan (Sudan)


This project examines the mechanisms of simultaneous differentiation and adjustment between the Baggara and the Nuba of South Kordofan in the period since the early 1980s.

While signs of nation building could be observed in Kordofan into the late 1970s, the opposite took place since the early 1980s in the whole of the Sudan. This latter process could also be observed in other areas of Africa. In part it is a result of global developments (like e.g. oil production) that lead to an ever increasing articulation of collective rights in categories difficult to reconcile with the principles of the modern state. Instead, demands to access rights are presented in categories of ethnicity, culture, religion and sometimes "race". The project explores the local discourses and practices of autochthony in South Kordofan within the framework of these general developments and their specific Sudanese forms.

The main focus is on questions of ownership, access and use rights to land and water. The core issue is the legal fixation and the practice of communal land rights in a context of legal pluralism. Instead of concentrating on patterns and causes of confrontation only, the project is also interested in those patterns of cooperation, co-existence and adjustment which endured or even emerged locally during the war between 1985 and 2002. The subject matter hence also permits the asking of the normative question of how an entangled confrontation can be developed into a situation marked by peaceful co-operation.


Prof. Dr. Richard Rottenburg

Crossing gaps of indeterminacy: Some theoretical remarks. In: Maranhao, Tullio/ Bernhard Streck (eds.): Translation and ethnography. The anthropological challenge of intercultural understanding. Tucson 2003, 30–43.

Code-Wechsel. Ein Versuch zur Umgehung der Frage: Gibt es eine oder viele Wirklichkeiten? In: Kaufmann, Matthias (ed.): Wahn und Wirklichkeit. Multiple Realitäten. Frankfurt am Main 2003, 153–174.

Weit hergeholte Fakten. Eine Parabel der Entwicklungshilfe. Stuttgart 2002.

Accountability for development aid. In: Kalthoff, Herbert/ Richard Rottenburg/ Hans-Jürgen Wagener (eds.): Facts and figures. Economic representations and practices. Marburg 2000, 143–173 (Jahrbuch Ökonomie und Gesellschaft 16).

with Achim von Oppen (eds.): Organisationswandel in Afrika: Kollektive Praxis und kulturelle Aneignung. Berlin 1995.

Ndemwareng. Wirtschaft und Gesellschaft in den Morobergen. München 1991.

Dr. Guma Kunda Komey

Regional Disparity in National Development of the Sudan and its Impact on Nation-Building with Reference to the Peripheral Region of the Nuba Mountains. Ph.D. Thesis. Khartoum 2005.

The Dynamics of Underdevelopment and Marginalization Process: A Case Study from the Nuba Mountains Region, Sudan. In: G. El-Tayeb/ H. Ati (eds.): Proceedings of National Civic Forum (Khartoum). Khartoum 2005 (im Druck).

Internally Displaced Populations of the Sudan and the Rights of Citizenship; Chapter Four. In: G. El-Tayeb/ H. Ati (eds.): Peace and Development and Democracy; Proceedings of National Civic Forum, Session x, (Khartoum). Khartoum 2002, 52–69.

Integrated Regional Development for the Nuba Mountains: Past Patterns, Present Potentialities and Future Prospects [in Arabic]. In: Journal of Peace and Development Studies 01 (02) (1998), 80–94.

Regional Development Planning and Industrial Location Policy in Japan Nation-Building Process: An Economic Geographical Analysis. Niigata 1991 (M.A. Thesis).

Manal Mohamed Ali Taha, M.A. (retired)

Traditional practices. Health and believes. Khartoum 2003 (MA thesis).

with Kadam Muhaned: Human Rights and Democracy – Kordofan and Bahr Elgazal state. Khartoum 2003.

with Nizar Elnour: Need Assessment. Nuba Mountains. Humanitarian Plus Programme in Collaboration FAR and IRC. Khartoum 2001.

Changing Gender Role among Migrants Hadandawa Women in Atbra City. In: Human Resource Development, labor force and Migration issues. Sudan National Population council in collaboration with UNFPA. Oct 12–15 1998. Khartoum 1998.

A traditional institution in the Sudan – Kujur among the Nuba tribes. In: Traditional Medicine Newsletter. Nov. 1997, Issue No. 4, 5–7.