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Female Soldiers in Sierra LeoneSex, Security, and Post-Conflict Development$
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Megan H. MacKenzie

Print publication date: 2012

Print ISBN-13: 9780814761373

Published to NYU Press Scholarship Online: March 2016

DOI: 10.18574/nyu/9780814761373.001.0001

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The History of Sex, Order, and Conflict in Sierra Leone

The History of Sex, Order, and Conflict in Sierra Leone

(p.23) 2 The History of Sex, Order, and Conflict in Sierra Leone
Female Soldiers in Sierra Leone

Megan H. Mackenzie

NYU Press

This chapter provides an overview of the history of Sierra Leone with a focus on gender ordering and sexual regulation. A look at secret societies can provide some insights into historical and contemporary gender roles in Sierra Leone. These secret societies are all-male or all-female cultural organizations that have existed in West Africa for centuries. Also, they are organized according to sex rather than ethnicity; the female-only groups are often referred to as Bundu or Sande societies, and the male-only groups are called Poro. The chapter also provides an overview of how Sierra Leone came to be colonized, focusing on prostitution, family law, and marriage.

Keywords:   Sierra Leone, sexual regulation, Poro, Sande, Bundu, gender ordering, secret societies, female-only groups, male-only groups

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