Possession, Power, and Identity, in a traditionalist pagan (notoriously un-Islamic) town of Niger [the Mawri sept of the Hausa tribe in the Adewa region]

contents of book

#

chapter-heading

pp.

1st

Bori, power, and identity

7-48

2nd

Lost rituals

49-76

3rd

Socializing the spirits

77-119

4th

Everyday life of the bori

120-58

5th

Baboule spirits

159-91

6th

Taking hold of the kasuwa

192-226

7th

Mirrors of Maria

227-61

8th

Lightning and the spirits of rain

262-90

pp. 1, 293, 56, 58, 61, 63 sacred sites for animal-immolations to deities

p.

Dogondoutchi

1

"DOGONDOUTCHI. The name variously evokes a haven for ancestral traditions, a center of anti-Islamic resistance, or a place filled with spirits ... for ... Zarma, Hausa, Fulani, or Tuareg. ... this Hausaphone Mawri community of northern Arewa ... at the foot of the dogon doutchi – the "long stone," a rock peak that towers over the ... savannah ... visible from miles away."

293

"the dogon doutchi raises its tortured shape against the sky like a giant tower. Although the spirit Ungurnu, who established residence in the huge monolith ..., no longer warns the inhabitants ..., a black ox is still slaughtered to her once a year."

56

"Ungurnu, the guardian spirit of Dogondoutchi, would transform what was at the time only a small village into patches of grass ... a few lonely bushes that showed no sign of having ever been disturbed by a human presence. A black ox would be (and still is) sacrificed to the spirit every year in insure that she would promote the azriki (good fortune) of all villagers ... . Legend has it that that Ungurnu would warn ... of any imminent danger. From the dogon doutchi (long stone) where she resided, she would emit a long, ululating sound that the chief would recognize as a warning signal that ... peril was approaching the village."

58

"Half a kilometer south of the dogon doutchi, another rocky mound raises its massive silhouette ... . Known as tozon bijini ("the big bull’s hump"), the rocky landmark is the abode of a Doguwa named Tarwa. ... a goat was slaughtered annually on tozon bijini as an offering to the resident spirit. On the night following the sacrifice, it would invariably rain because Tarwa liked to wash her altar stone".

61

"In a place called Matsafa, ... every year ... a cow and her calf appeared from the bush at the very date selected for the sacrifice to occur. People would take the calf away from its mother and slaughter it as an offering to the local spirit. Each time the cow would moo desperately for a while, before finally returning to where she came from. Nobody knew where she went, but ... she always reappeared the following year with a new calf at her side. The day after the sacrificial meat was grilled and consumed, the rain never failed. People knew it, and the following morning they would be sowing in their fields."

63

"People still say today that upon entering the city of Tibiri (four hundred miles east of Dogondoutchi, in the Maradi valley), individuals become invisible to their potential pursuers ... . {perhaps, are concealed, by the local population, from agents of the government who seek to arrest them – just as the modern-day Cathars in France conceal, in similar fashion, refugees from persecution by the French government?} ... "Every year, at the start of the cold season, a sacrifice is made to Maguiro [a male deity invoked in times of epidemics] on the site allocated to that purpose. ... All the inhabitants stand on their doorstep. The first roosters in sight are caught and slaughtered on every path leading to the village so that the epidemics will not come in." Because it closes village paths to foreign spirits, the ceremony is also called tarbon iska ("meeting the spirit"). ... If unrestricted, these spirits entered villages to ... bring such diseases as measles, meningitis, and fevers."

pp. 10, 103, 13, 307, 73 extraneous spirits

p.

spirits in other towns & regions of Niger

10

"in the neighboring region of Ader, east of Dogondoutchi, a new female spirit associated with crickets made her appearance on the bori arena in 1973. She went by the name of Bobo {cf. Bobo Dioulasso, in Upper Volta}, a term that refers to one of the twenty different species of crickets found in Ader. She had come from the west with the crickets, she said ... . Other spirits of Zarma origin also appeared at that time".

   

103

"In the neighboring Songhayland, holey music (the "cries" of the violin, the clacking of the drums) is literally spoken of as the sound of the ancestors that induces the spirits to take possession of their mediums’ bodies".

13

"the sounds of holey ceremonies are the voices of the ancestors whose dramatic message is amplified through the musicians’ instruments and the mediums’ screams".

307, n. 3:18

"torou is the name of the first spirits to be incorporated in holey possession in neighboring Songhay society ... . Torou also designates the physical abode of a spirit in Songhay – a stone, a mountain, a tree, and the like".

   

73

"South of Dogondoutchi, a village by the name of Kame Doumey, whose inhabitants had allegedly all been killed by an evil Doguwa spirit feeding on human blood, had been rebaptized by outsiders as Kamen Kundugum (Kame where there is nothing left) and Kmen Doguwa (Kame of the Doguwa).

 

Further south, the village of Lagodo ... had also acquired a reputation for fostering the deadly activities of several bloodthirsty spirits. Unlike their tamer counterparts, who mount their hosts in the ritually orchestrated context of bori ceremonies, these Doguwa spirits are destructive and deadly, and ... rob a human victim of her blood".

pp. 31-34 geographic locations of tribes

p.

tribes

31

"The northern region of Arewa that ... coincides with the the arrondissement of Dogondoutschi ... is home to ... Hausa-speaking Mawri,

32

... it borders

Zarma-Songhay country to the west,

the Hausa states to the east and the south, and

Tuareg territories to the north... .

 

... the descendants of the first inhabitants ... are known as Azna (or Arna).

... Azna ... remain ... a ritual experts and guardians of local "heritage" (gado) ... in ... Arewa communities.

33

The Arewa region was first occupied in the sixteenth century by the Gubawa (plural of Ba’gube), who came from the east and allegedly found an empty territory upon their arrival. They were lead in their quest for suitable land by a queen-priestess, Sarauniya, who had fled her country of origin, the Hausa state of Daura ... . The newcomers founded the village of Lougou as their first settlement. ... Several clans (dangi) formed a community ... . ...

34

Each clan possessed sacred grounds, or sanctuaries, where sacrifice was regularly performed to propitiate the clan’s protective spirits and to communicate with them.

 

... not too long after the Gubawa ..., a small group, ... the Arewa, conquered the area. ... the Arewa chief and his entourage ... established a polity modeled after their state of origin, the Hausa state of Bornu ... concentrated in the Matankari – a village situated twenty miles southeast of Lougou."

pp. 46, 51-53 caerimonies for spirits generally

p.

caerimony

46

"Each wasa (bori ceremony, singular of wasani) was an occasion to identify the various spirits who, upon being summoned by the musicians, came to possess their hosts. I learned to recognize the screeching sounds of the Doguwa spirits, and to differentiate the stuttering speech of the Zarma spirits from the pidgin muttering of the Baboule."

51

"revered and placated by special individuals on behalf of the entire Gubawa population ... was Sarauniya, the spirit who guided the creation of Lougou, the first human settlement in Arewa ... . Her human receptacle ... priestess ... was invested with specific powers ... to mediate communication between Sarauniya and the local population.

 

... a number of spirits ... manifested themselves to humans by riding "on the heads" of their priests during possession ceremonies ... . These spirits, such as Douna, who was revered in the village of Zakuda, had better defined personalities and attributes, and were each placated on behalf of a specific Gubawa subgroup ... . ... many of the bori spirits of indigenous origin bear the same name as Azna spirits."

52

"Hawa ... and her husband, Adamu, produced fifty sets of twins. One day Uban Duniya ("father of the world"), the creator god, asked to be shown the twins. Thinking that Uban Duniya wanted to take them with him, Hawa told Adamu to hide in a cave the most beautiful child from each set of twins. The creator god ... condemned the hidden twins to remain forever invisible and to

53

harm their human brothers and sisters. These ethereal beings would be dependent on their visible siblings for sustenance; people, on the other hand, would have to keep on begging their "hidden" twins for benevolence and protection. ... Invisible, yet powerful, the hidden children of Hawa and Adamu married and had children themselves. Ever since ..., they have caught (kama, i.e., seized hold of) their human counterparts and possessed them when the need to communicate arose."

pp. 65-67, 81, 95 erratic spirits; spirits guiding to healing herbs in dreams; a protective spell

p. 65

"I heard numerous accounts of villagers who had been attacked or followed by frightening or wicked creatures of varied appearance when they were crossing the bush on their way to another hamlet. There are also those who ... have caught a terrible disease called ciwan daji (sickness of the bush) while traveling across the wild. ... caused by spirits who "catch" people and make them hauka (crazy), this affliction can last anywhere from a few weeks to several years. I renders the victims ... incoherent, and incapable of working, and can only be cured through treatment at the hands of a bori practitioner."

 

"When bori healers make periodic trips to the bush to build up or replenish their supplies of medicinal plants, they often

p. 66

follow the guidelines provided by their spirits in a dream. Spirits who communicate with their devotees in dreams tell them which plants to pick and where to find them.

 

Before leaving ... to enter the wild, however, spirit mediums must ritually perform darmen daji ("tying the bush") by pronouncing appropriate words that will ensure that they cross a field of favorable forces. If no such precautions are taken, healers ... run the risk of ... not finding any plants ... . ... Pronouncing ... "takin tak" creates an invisible barrier that prevents any evil force from colliding with the speaker when the latter has entered the bush. ... By uttering "takin tak" or "greetings, in front tika, behind tika tak," ...

p. 67

the healer ... insures the success ... . ... When uttering "takin tak," the ... impact of the sound is felt like a blow by the creature at whom it is directed. The creature is literally pinned down by the word".

p. 81

"While ... a great majority of the female mediums ... did not prescribe the herbs she saw in her dreams, a sizable portion of the male bori membership in Dogondoutchi claimed to earn an income selling the medicines they were shown while dreaming."

p. 95

"even tough their spirits revealed to them in dreams how to make medicines, women were not supposed to go to the bush and pick the leaves, barks, and roots they had been shown because only men should deal with medicinal herbs."

p. 68 directional colors for immolations by way of kafa (‘anchoring’)

In the village of Manoudou

a __ hen is killed

to the __

red

east

black

north

white

west

black-&-white speckled

south

"the hen ... is actually buried alive ... as kafa kaza ---literally, to anchor the hen into the ground."

p. 80 visions of a female medium

"At night, she would be lying on her bed, when suddenly she would see huge flames in the room as if the whole house had caught on fire. {cf. valkyrja Brynhild surrounded by a wall of fire} At other times, it was a horse that was pursuing her. {cf. mating-habits of horses : pursuit by stallion of a fleeing mare, culminating in sexual intercourse whenever he would catch up to her}

When [she] stepped out of her room, she would sometimes be surrounded by kneeling women. When they started moving closer, she would try to run back to her room and lock herself in, but they always managed to enter the locked house. [She] would then try to escape them by running out".

pp. 87-89, 304 soul & shadow; stages of spirit-possession; failure of photography

p.

kurwa

87

"The kurwa (soul or vital principle) is localized in the head".

304, n. 3:5

"Kurwa was often associated ... with inuwa {cf. name of pirouetting god /INVus/, mentioned in the Saturnalia by Macrobius}, which is literally one’s shadow or shade".

88

"During possession, the [possessing-]spirit takes the place of the soul. Displaced, the soul is said to remain outside of the body until it "hears" the coughing that signals the departure of the intrusive spirit. When the body is literally emptied of its kurwa (vital essence), it becomes the ideal receptacle for spirits ... . This means, of course, that only one at a time can take possession of a human ... . By the same token, only one bori devotee will exhibit the body postures, attitude, and personality of a specific spirit at any given time. This is why ... some spirits may not mount their devotees right away when they are invited to enter the garka (arena where bori ceremonies are held); they are busy riding their horses at another ceremony and must finish there before they can move on to the next wasa where their presence has been requested. Though the bori pantheon ... contains more than three hundred spirits, only ... twenty or so mutanen daji are ... the central figures of the major families of spirits ... . Bori spirits ... generally wait until they are summoned by the compelling rhythms of the calabash drums. As soon as the spirit touches the head of the >dan bori he is about to mount, the host loses consciousness. Yet possession is not immediate.

 

This is how ... an experienced bori violinist, describes the process leading to trance.

First, the spirit sends wind (iska [/iskoki/ is plural of /iska/, p. 51]) {cf. the names of /ISCavin/ & /ISCovan/, two characters in the Mabinogion} on his horse.

Then, after the wind leaves, the spirit sends his dogs. {the hounds (aequivalent to Yorkshire "gabble ratchets" – MM, p. 113, fn. -- whose unintelligible gabble is reminiscent of "unintelligible" speech by "untamed" spirits [p. 307, n. 3:16]) in the sky follow the praeternatural wind, in the Malay description of the Wild Hunt by the Spectre Huntsman (Hantu Pemburu) whose face is a self-rooting leaf (MM, p. 114 – a characteristic of succulents) and whose "whole body became overgrown with orchids" (MM, p. 114, fn. 1); Lailaps (‘Hurricane’) is a mythic hound, borrowed by Amphitruon from (GM 118.b) Kephalos (‘Head’) – cf. displacement of kurwa from the head}

Finally, once of the dogs have left, he mounts the devotee. ...

89

If the spirit is really mounting her horse, the physical pressure exerted is such that the host’s "ribs are squeezed" (awasu sun matsu). When the soul leaves its corporeal frame, the body in turn is made transparent to the spirit who fills it and animates it. Thus <yan bori believe that one cannot obtain a visible image of a ... human horse by photographing the possessed host. When they penetrate human bodies, spirits alter the constitution of these bodies in such a way that they {the human bodies?} no longer leave an tangible imprint on the photographer’s film." {There are instances (in Haiti) wherein attempts at taking photographs of a practitioner engaged with a spirit result in a blank photographic image.}

MM = Walter William Skeat : Malay Magic. Routledge, 1965. http://books.google.com/books?id=K9Ly7Q9p-dgC&pg=PA114&lpg=PA114&dq=

pp. 89-94 sexual reproduction

p.

reproduction

89

"A well digger is namiji (literally, husband) to the well he has made, while young unmarried women who have lost their virginity are metaphorically referred to as rijiya (well). ... Openness and receptivity are also emphasized in the free woman or karuwa (prostitute) when

90

she is called zaura, a term that derives from zaure, the entrance room to the Mawri compound and the structure that mediates between the house and the outside." {cf. /zur/ ‘to commit adultery’ (Strong’s 2114)}

"barrenness in women is often a prime mover for becoming involved with the bori".

91

"in the bori ..., ... female mediums predominate. Of these women, a substantial majority are socially unstable, having married and divorced several husbands. In between unions, rather than finding shelter in a father’s, brother’s, or uncle’s house, they often resort to prostitution, if only temporarily, to attain some degree of economic or social autonomy."

92

"married women regularly seek the advice of bori healers when they are trying to conceive, during their pregnancies, or when their babies are sick."

93

"Whether a woman wants to find, keep, or get rid of a husband, she often resorts to the services of a jima (bori specialist) who will help her obtain what she desires by interceding with the spirits on her behalf."

94

"Of the young female mediums ... in Dogondoutchi, over half ... engaged in karuwanci (prostitution) to earn a living and recruited many of their clients through bori."

pp. 95-98 offices of leadership in bori

p.

leadership

95

"female priestesses in charge of supervising rituals ... were of Zarma ancestry."

96

"The principal leadership position in the bori is that of the sarkin bori (chief of bori). ... Only the horses of such spirits as

Babai (an important male of indigenous origin),

Rankasso (a female indigenous spirit who had a prominent role in precolonial wars {= war-goddess Athene?}),

Kirai or Souleymane (the oldest and most powerful Zarma spirits)

can hope to compete for power or leadership. Such rules, however, apply only to men".

97

"Those who wish to hold a ceremony must first secure the consent of the chief of bori through the payment of a fee before they contact the musicians or send out invitations."

 

"Within the bori community itself, initiated members may achieve prominence by undergoing a second initiation called shan ice. Shan ice means, literally, "to drink from the tree. This refers to the tree barks that are collected from the bush and put to macerate in an earthenware jar for the whole duration of the ritual. The initiates regularly drink from the medicine that is believed to strengthen them. ... those that have drunk from the tree are treated with special deference and receive special access to bori resources. ... At death, masu shan ice (those who have drunk from the tree) further receive special considerations : ... a

98

special wasa called kashin <kwarya (breaking of the calabash) is held to publicly acknowledge the death of an important member of the bori community ... . ...

Bori priests, whether or not they have gone through the rites of shan ice, ... generally head a troup of loosely organized mediums and musicians who live in the same village or ward. They supervise healing rites and sacrifices to the spirits ... . They ... occasionally perform exorcisms when the tormenting bori cannot be tamed. [i.e., "Doguwa spirits" who "cannot be placated" (p. 305, n. 3:9)] ... the jima supervises possession performances".

pp. 99-100 invitations; favorable days

p. 99

"Distributing kola nuts – together with the information about where and when there will be a wasa – amounts to sending out invitation cards in inform people that there is going to be a party."

p. 100

"The most favorable days for staging a wasa are Thursdays and Sundays because ... those are the favorite days of the spirits, especially the "black spirits" of Zarma ancestry who regulate wind, rain, lightning, and thunder."

pp. 100-102, 306 musicians of bori

p.

musicians

100

"The maroka {cf. Caribbean /MARaCA/} (musicians) who sing the bori’s praise ...

101

(whether they be praise singers, violinists, drummers, or gourd players) make up as "cast," ... "The spirits follow them." ... musicians always "travel with the spirits.""

102

example of a continuated performance : "Because they had not clearly heard what the Doguwa Rankasso, through the voice of her young devotee, had said to them during the wasa, the musicians decided to call the spirit back. They stood right outside the hut where the Doguwa’s devotee was sleeping and started playing the song of Rankasso. Soon after, the young woman became possessed and the musicians were able to converse with the spirit."

 

admirable humility of musicians : "the musician "has shed his pride in order to better serve the pride of others ... .""

306, n. 3:14

"bori musicians are the only ones who can ask the fearful Gillaji spirits – Tuareg nobles ... – to identify themselves."

pp. 103-104 music of bori; instrumentalists & musical instruments

p.

song & music

103

"Each song addressed to a particular spirit consists of the kirari (praise epithets or praise names) of that spirit and a description of who the bori is or what she does, together with salient traits and anecdotes ... . Each of the songs sung by the vocalist is linked to a specific melody and rhythm that the <yan bori learn to recognize before any words are said. ... the spirits cannot remain cannot remain long unaffected by the compulsive rhythms and flattering words : they get excited and soon want to take part in the wasa held in their honor. The sound of the music therefore transcends the boundaries between human and superhuman realms and fuses the material with the nonmaterial. ... Bori music is neither ordinary speech nor ordinary sound. Rather, ... the magical utterances ... delineate a special field of ... power ..., the music of the spirits ... that transcends the bounds of human experience to literally echo the voice of the spirits".

104

"A troupe of musicians generally consists of one or two male masu goge (violinists) who play the one-stringed fiddle and two to five male calabash drummers, or <yan <kwarya (literally, sons of the calabash). To play, the drummers dig a hole at the edge of the possession ground and later overturn and place the <kwarya (calabash) over the hole, thereby enlarging the drum’s resonating cavity considerably. They strike the calabash with a set of carved wooden spoons that are tied together with lengthy pieces of cloth and that resemble a human hand (each drumstick has five fingers). The fiddler and drummers are occasionally accompanied by one or two gourd rattle players who, unlike the other musicians, do not sit and are free to walk around the dancers. A zabaya (female singer) can also participate in singing the spirits’ songs".

pp. 104-105 moodiness of spirits

p. 104

"The spirits hear what the singers sing about them; the words are carefully chosen to induce a certain mood in the spirits that will make them want to attend the wasa, but what this mood should be depends on the particular bori considered. Some spirits must be cajoled into possessing their devotees and like to hear their qualities praised endlessly. Others only come ...

p. 105

when they feel insulted".

p. 306, n. 3:15

"Although affliction by a bori spirit frequently results in the patient’s initiation, there are some sprits who do not require initiation. Known as Dodo, these powerful creatures endow their human hosts with the capacity to heal a wide variety of ailments".

pp. 105-106 spirits causing specific ailments

p.

ailment-inducing spirit

ailment induced

105

"Gurmunya, "the lame one," cannot walk and drags herself on the ground.

She makes her victims wander around cemeteries – which she inhabits – and induces women to menstruate without interruption.

 

Adama [a name of Hawa (p. 52)], a white Doguwa,

provokes paralysis of the limbs or of the entire body.

 

Zanzana ("smallpox, smallpox marks")

gives pimples and eye sores, produces itching and rashes all over ... .

106

Maria the prostitute

prevents women from having children and renders men impotent." {is this sterility is a result of gonorrhea?}

pp. 107-108 attire characteristic of particular possessing-spirits

p.

possessing-spirit

that spirit’s clothing

107

Kirai {>ahro^n?} (a Zarma spirit)

red riga (gown), red hula (Phrygian cap), red damara (sash)

 

Moussa {Musa = Mos^eh} (Kirai’s younger brother)

black riga, red hula, red damara

 

Zanzana {zonah Rah.ab?} "who continuously scratches "herself""

kyan nyandi (striped black-and-white wrapper

108

Gurmunya, the lame spirit

hat sewn with cowrie-shells, antelope-horns decorated with strips of leather

p. 111 animals immolated to particular spirits

spirit

animal immolated

red-clad Kirai

red roosters

pox-speckled Zanzana

speckled black-and-white hen

black-clad Rankasso & Wankarma (Doguwa spirits)

black hen

Danne ("a Mossi military spirit of the Baboule family")

hounds {hounds were likewise sacrificed to the war-god Enualios – CA)}

CA = http://www.theoi.com/Cult/AresCult.html citing Pausanias iii. 14. § 9

pp. 112, 114 use of emmet-hill in initiation-rite

p.

emmet-hill

112

"The gidan toruruwa (anthill) is the opening through which the invisible forces of the wild will emerge before being ... tamed as bori spirits. Also referred to as uwa yawa ("the mother of many"), the anthill ... [will] always contain grain, even when people’s granaries are empty, people. ... the toruruwa are a species of black ants known for their ...

114

efforts to collect grain, ... these ants ... are used by the Hausa of northern Nigeria in the preparation of medicines "destined to increase one’s business, drawing it to one’s market stall or shop as effectively as the ants carry home their stores of corn" ... . ...

 

By drawing a large circle around the gidan toruruwa with his foot, the jima thus constructs the anthill as the center of the ritual arena the spirits will be heading for. After having gone over the circle’s circumference three times, [the jima] then draws two perpendicular lines that go from one side of the circle’s periphery to its opposite side and intersect at its center. He is drawing paths for the spirits to converge on the anthill where they will [be] taking possession of [the male initiate’s] body."

p. 114 implements of specific spirits

implement

of __

axe

Kirai

riding-crop

the Baboule

antelope-horn adorned with leathern fringes

Gurmunya, the lame sister of Kirai

pp. 112, 114, 116-118 gyara (initiation rite)

p.

gyara

112

"The amarya {the Kemian hieroglyph /MR/ is a ‘chisel’ : cf. the Spectre Huntsman’s using a "chisel ... to make steps for the house" (MM, p. 115) – similar to the staircase in the initiatory dream by Ya<qob (B-Re>s^it 28:12)} (initiate), a young man ... is sitting ... under the white handwoven wrapper that covers his entire body. ...

114

After being led around the circle three times, [the initiate] is made to stand in the center of the drawn circle. With both hands, he is holding a large stick planted in the opening of the anthill. ... An assistant of the jima now washes the amarya’s entire body with the medicated henna ... . The tools of some important spirits are then brought and set on the faifai (round mat) covering the calabash of henna ... . ... Four chickens are also brought into the circle. ...

116

The <yan bori proceed back to the hango (circular stone altar). ... When they reach the altar of Danne {= Daniye>l?}, two <yan bori take the amarya behind a tree to wash him once more. ... Many young women have come from Dogondoutchi and they dance to attract attention ... looking for a partner for the night, hoping to exchange sex for money. ... The singer chants the songs of the spirits ... . ...

117

While a couple of women move with their extended arms holding stretched wrappers over their backs in the manner of giant birds gracefully gliding ..., a devotee sitting next to the musicians becomes possessed. Soon after, ... progressively, the dance ground is filled with mediums whose souls have been "ousted" by invading spiritual presences.

There is Kirai and his brother Bela.

Sitting on the ground with her legs folded under her is Gurmunya, the lame one who cannot walk.

Three Baboule spirits, recognizable by their stiff, military style of walking, have entered the bodies of their respective hosts. Two of them salute the third one, their superior, Komandan Mugu ("Commandant Evil"), who is giving them orders in ... pidgin French.

The spirit everyone is expecting has finally taken possession of the amarya ... . ... [The jima] gives [to the amarya] ... medicated water and then milk ... . ... [The jima] puts one of his rings in the amarya’s mouth and then asks the spirit what his name is. ... A moment later the spirit softly murmurs : "Kadaruwa" ("the crocodile of the water"). ... Kadaruwa is the son of Kirai the "red sorcerer." ...

Gurmunya, who cannot walk because "she has no foot," moves on her knees. She uses her arms to prop herself up and hop over the goat with her legs folded under her. ...

118

The musicians thus start singing the praise songs of the Doguwa spirits to invite them to the wasa. ... Then Baka Giwa, from the Doguwa family, mounts her devotee, soon followed by Mai Zaure, Rankasso, and Azane. Moments after, the amarya is also ... . The unknown guest is pressed to reveal her name. "I am Dossa," she says. Dossa remains a while and then departs. [The amarya]’s body shudders. As he collapses suddenly, two <yan bori rush to avert his fall."

Adeline Masquelier : Prayer Has Spoiled Everything : Possession, Power, and Identity, in an Islamic Town of Niger. Duke U Pr, Durham, 2001.