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42 | 2015
Les « jeunes » dans le sud de la Méditerranée

Ethnologie d'une catégorie singulière
“Youths” in the southern Mediterranean: ethnology of a singular category
Edited by Isabelle Rivoal

In the Mediterranean world, nothing precisely defines the span of youth better than the fact that one ceases to be considered “young” when one becomes a “man” (and for girls, when one becomes “the wife of” or a nun). “Being young” is a status category specifying a disparity between individuals who are accomplished and others who are not. It is to the study of this category that the present instalment of Ateliers d’anthropologie is dedicated. Turning on a comparison between societies in North Africa (Morocco) and the Middle-East (Lebanon, Syria, Jordan), this issue discusses the complex, ambiguous figure of the youth or shâbb (pl. shabâb), characterised by the urgent pressure to become… husbands, good Muslims, heads of families, respected people who are listened to and succeed: in short, men. Each article presents an ethnographic case, analysed by taking into consideration the key dimension of accomplishment, implying acts, a way of being, and recognition of social skills that are constantly called into question. More and more youths are staying “on the threshold”, and the pressure they place on society is heavy. The theoretical aim of this volume is to develop a critical perspective on the question of status, as well as on relations of power, domination and honour in southern Mediterranean societies.

Contributors: Muriel Champy, Irène Dos Santos, Agnès Gharbi Mesmar, Raymond Jamous, Christine Jungen, Marko Juntunen, Anne-Marie Peatrik, Anna Poujeau, Isabelle Rivoal, Romain Simenel

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