Kings of Disaster
Dualism, Centralism and the Scapegoat King in Southeastern Sudan
Studies in Violence, Mimesis & Culture
Published by: Michigan State University Press
555 pages, 6.00 x 9.00 in
- ISBN: 9781628963335
- Published: May 2018
The long-awaited, revised, and illustrated edition of Simon Simonse’s study of the Rainmakers of the Nilotic Sudan marks a breakthrough in anthropological thinking on African political systems. Taking his inspiration from René Girard’s theory of consensual scapegoating, the author shows that the longstanding distinction of states and stateless societies as two fundamentally different political types does not hold. Centralized and segmentary systems only differ in the relative emphasis put on the victimary role of the king as compared with that of enemy. Kings of Disaster proposes an elegant and powerful solution to the vexed problem of regicide.