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Bjørn Enge Bertelsen

Associate Professor
  • E-mailBjorn.Bertelsen@uib.no
  • Phone+47 55 58 93 22+47 411 03 883
  • Visitor Address
    Fosswinckelsgate 6, 8. etasje
    Bergen
    Room: 
    824
  • Postal Address
    Postboks 7802
    5020 BERGEN

I am a social anthropologist and work mainly on Southern Africa and Mozambique. My research interests include the issues of egalitarianism, urban transformation, violence, state, memory and tradition within political anthropology.

In March 2014 I started as Associate Professor at the Department and will in the period until 2019 work mainly with Bruce Kapferer's large ERC-funded project on Egalitarianism (see these pages for some preliminary coverage of this).

From August 2010 to end February 2014 I worked on my postdoctoral research project entitled "Social imaginaries of death, suffering and accumulation. Urban spaces of insecurity and poverty in Mozambique and Zimbabwe".

During the spring of 2010 I completed my PhD project on colonial and postcolonial politics, state formation and the traditional field in Mozambique initiated in Sept. 2004. 17 April 2010 I defended my PhD thesis entitled Violent becomings.State formation and the traditional field in colonial and postcolonial Mozambique.

Prior to my PhD project, I wrote a Master’s thesis (Cand. Polit.) in Social anthropology at UiB entitled "'Till the soil but do not touch the bones'. Memories of violence in Mozambican re-constructive practices" (2002). The thesis sought to explore the social impact and contemporary importance of violence related to Mozambique’s civil war from 1976/77 to 1992 as well as to identify post-conflict processes of dealing with such violence.

Spring 00: Organizer/tutor, bachelor level seminar on anthropological literature.

Spring 01: Organizer/tutor, bachelor level seminar on anthropological literature.

Spring 02: Organizer/tutor, bachelor level seminar on essay writing in anthropology.

Autumn 03: Organizer/tutor, bachelor level seminar on essay writing in anthropology.

Autumn 04: Organizer/tutor, M. Phil course "Anthropology and development".

Spring 05: Examination M. Phil course SANT 308.

Autumn 05: Organizer/tutor, M. Phil course "Anthropology and development".

Spring 06: Organizer/lecturer bachelor level course (SANT 250) in essay-writing in anthropology including teaching, supervision and examination.

Spring 06: Supervision of 16 bachelor level students in anthropology.

Autumn 06: Organizer/lecturer bachelor level course (SANT 250) in essay-writing in anthropology including teaching, supervision and examination.

Autumn 06: Supervision of 2 bachelor-level students (SANT 250) in anthropology.

Spring 07: Organizer/lecturer bachelor level course (SANT 112) on the regional ethnography of Southern Africa, including examination.

Spring 08: Supervision of 20 bachelor-level students in anthropology (SANT 250), including also examination.

Autumn 08: Organizer/lecturer bachelor level course (SANT 250) in essay-writing in anthropology including teaching, supervision and examination.

Autumn 08: Supervision of 11 bachelor-level students in anthropology (SANT 250), including also examination.

01.01.09-28.02.09: Assistant professor [universitetslektor].

Spring 10: Examiner bachelor level course "Anthropology, intervention and development" (SANT 220)

Autumn 10: Course leader SANT 307 "Contested Resources: Ecological Anthropology in Global Perspective", including lectures and examination

Autumn 10: 3 lectures SANT 304 "Introducing Anthropology and its Subjects: History, Poverty and Social Transformation"

Spring 11: Course leader SANT 303 "Project Proposal and Project Seminar for the Anthropology of Development", including lectures.

Autumn 12: Course leader SANT 307 "Contested Resources: Ecological Anthropology in Global Perspective", including lectures and examination

Spring 13: Course leader and lectures SANT 322 "Anthropology, Intervention and Development"


2004-2017: Examiner for a total of 34 Master degree and M. Phil dissertations at the Dept. of Social Anthropology.

2004-2017: Evaluator of a total of 15 pre-fieldwork project descriptions for Master degree and M.Phil students.


Supervision
2010-:
Completed supervision of a total of 12 MPHL and MA students. As per March 2017 I am supervising 2 MA students and 3 PhD students.

Books
2016a Violent Becomings: State Formation, Sociality, and Power in Mozambique. New York: Berghahn Books, p. 320. [OPEN ACCESS BOOK -- Available at http://www.berghahnbooks.com/title.php?rowtag=BertelsenViolent or http://uib.academia.edu/BjornEngeBertelsen ]

2016b [co-edited with Vigdis Broch-Due] Violent Reverberations. Global Modalities of Trauma. New York: Palgrave Macmillan, p. 279.

2016c [co-edited Synnøve Bendixsen] Critical Anthropological Engagements in Human Alterity and Difference. New York: Palgrave Macmillan, p. 303.

2015a [co-edited with Kirsten Alsaker Kjerland] Navigating Colonial Orders: Norwegian Entrepreneurship in Africa and Oceania. New York: Berghahn Books, p. 404.

2009a [co-edited with Bruce Kapferer] Crisis of the state. War and social upheaval. New York: Berghahn Books, p. 330.

 

Theses
2010a Violent becomings.State formation and the traditional field in colonial and postcolonial Mozambique. PhD thesis. Dept. of social anthropology, University of Bergen, p. 362.

2002 Till the soil but do not touch the bones. Memories of violence in Mozambican re- constructive practices. Master thesis in social anthropology. Bergen: University of Bergen, p. 239.

 

Journal articles / book chapters
[Forthcoming] German Pentecostal Witches and Communists: The violence of purity and sameness. In Knut Rio, Michelle MacCarthy and Ruy Llera Blanes (eds) Pentecostalism and Witchcraft in Melanesia and Africa. New York: Palgrave Macmillan.

[Forthcoming] Efervescência efémera: levantamentos populares urbanos em Moçambique. In Luís de Brito (ed.) Agora eles têm medo de nós! - Uma colectânea de textos sobre as revoltas populares em Moçambique (2008-2012). Maputo: IESE.

2016d Valuable Subversions: Gendered Generativity and Sorcerous Production in Central Mozambique. Valuation Studies, 4(1): 41-66. [Open Access article -- downloadable here]

2016e [with Vigdis Broch-Due] Violent Reverberations: An Introduction to our Trauma Scenarios. I Vigdis Broch-Due og Bjørn Enge Bertelsen (red.) Violent Reverberations. Global Modalities of Trauma New York: Palgrave Macmillan, pp. 1-21.

2016f Multisemic speech genres as vehicles for re-inscribing meaning in post-conflict societies. A Mozambican case. I Vigdis Broch-Due og Bjørn Enge Bertelsen (red) Violent Reverberations. Global Modalities of Trauma. New York: Palgrave Macmillan, pp. 193-217.

2016g [with Synnøve Bendixsen] Recalibrating alterity, difference, ontology. Anthropological engagements with human and non-human worlds. I Bjørn Enge Bertelsen og Synnøve Bendixsen (red.) Critical Anthropological Engagements in Human Alterity and Difference.  New York: Palgrave Macmillan, pp. 1-40.

2015e [with Alessandro Zagato]  Introducion. The Event of Charlie Hebdo — Imaginaries of Freedom and Control. In Alessandro Zagato (ed.) The Event of Charlie Hebdo. Imaginaries of Freedom and Control. New York: Berghahn Books, pp. 1-11.

2015b "The Spirit of the Laws in Mozambique" by Juan Obarrio. [Review article]. Anthropological Quarterly, 88(2):565-575.

2015c Navigating Colonial Orders: Norwegian Entrepreneurship in Africa and Oceania, ca. 1850 to 1950. In Kirsten Alsaker Kjerland and Bjørn Enge Bertelsen (eds) Navigating Colonial Orders: Norwegian Entrepreneurship in Africa and Oceania. New York: Berghahn Books, pp. 1-37.

2015d Colonialism in Norwegian and Portuguese: The Plantation Madal in Mozambique. In Kirsten Alsaker Kjerland and Bjørn Enge Bertelsen (eds) Navigating Colonial Orders: Norwegian Entrepreneurship in Africa and Oceania. New York: Berghahn Books, pp. 291-320.

2014a Maize mill sorcery. Cosmologies of substance, production and accumulation engaged in central Mozambique. In Allen Abramson and Martin Holbraad (eds) Framing Cosmologies: the Anthropology of Worlds. Manchester: Manchester University Press, pp. 199-220.

2014b Effervescence and Ephemerality: Popular Urban Uprisings in Mozambique. Ethnos: Journal of Anthropology, DOI:10.1080/00141844.2014.929596. [Open Access article -- downloadable here]

2014c El género del derecho: Política, memoria y agencia en los tribunales comunitarios de Mozambique. In Rachel Sieder and John-Andrew McNeish (eds) Justicia de género y pluralidades legales: Perspectivas latinoamericanas y africanas. Mexico City: Centro de investigaciones y estudios superiores en antropología social (CIESAS), pp. 113-146. [Spanish edition of 2013a.]

2014d [with Inge Tvedten and Sandra Roque] Engaging, Transcending and Subverting Dichotomies: Discursive Dynamics of Maputo’s Urban Space. Urban Studies, 51(13):2752-2769, DOI: 10.1177/0042098013512872.

2013a The gender of law: politics, memory and agency in Mozambican community courts. In Rachel Sieder and John-Andrew McNeish (eds) Gender, Justice and Legal Pluralities. Latin American and African Perspectives. In the series "Law, Development and Globalization". London and New York: Routledge, pp. 82-108.

2012a Moving at the margins to re-centre anthropology. Interview with Bruce Kapferer. Norsk Antropologisk Tidsskrift 23(2): 182-197. [See also the online and fully referenced version of the same interview available here]

2011a 'Entering the red sands'. The corporality of punishment and imprisonment in Chimoio, Mozambique. Journal of Southern African Studies, 37(3): 611-626.

2010b Securitisation of the social and state transformation from Iraq to Mozambique. In John-Andrew McNeish and Jon Harald Sande Lie (eds.), Security and development. Critical interventions series. Oxford and New York: Berghahn Books, pp. 84-98.

2010c [with Sindre Bangstad] 'Heart of darkness re-invented? A tale of Norwegian ex-soldiers in the Democratic Republic of Congo.' Anthropology Today, 26(1): 8-12.

2009b ‘Multiple sovereignties and summary justice in Mozambique. A critique of some legal anthropological terms.' Social analysis, 53(3): 123-147. [This article won the "NFU Development Research Award 2009" as best article published in 2009 by a researcher below 40.]

2009c Kolonialisme på portugisisk og norsk. Plantasjen Madal i Mosambik' ['Colonialism - Portuguese and Norwegian. The Madal plantation in Mozambique'], in Kirsten Alsaker Kjerland and Knut Rio (eds.) Kolonitid. Nordmenn på eventyr og big business i Afrika og Stillehavet. Oslo: Scandinavian Academic Press, pp. 251-276. [in Norwegian]

2009d Review article/compte rendu. "The security-development nexus. Expressions of sovereignty in Southern Africa" by Lars Buur, Steffen Jensen and Finn Stepputat. Lusotopie, 16(2):198-201.

2009e Sorcery and death squads. Transformations of state, sovereignty, and violence in postcolonial Mozambique, in Bruce Kapferer and Bjørn Enge Bertelsen (eds.) Crisis of the state. War and social upheaval. New York: Berghahn Books, pp. 210-240.

2009f [with Bruce Kapferer] The crisis of power and reformations of the state in globalizing realities, in Bruce Kapferer and Bjørn Enge Bertelsen (eds.) Crisis of the state. War and social upheaval. New York: Berghahn Books, pp. 1-26.

2007a "Å dø her koster ikke noe". Vold, rettsantropologi og suverenitet i det postkoloniale Mosambik ['To die here does not cost much'. Violence, legal anthropology and sovereignty in postcolonial Mozambique]. Norsk Antropologisk Tidsskrift, 18(3-4):280-295. [in Norwegian]

2007b Violence, sovereignty and tradition. Understanding death squads and sorcery in Chimoio, Mozambique, in Armando Marques Guedes and Maria José Lopes (eds.) State and traditional law in Angola and Mozambique. Coimbra: Edições Almedina, pp. 201-261.

2006a [with Kjetil Fosshagen, Anette Fagertun and Inger Lise Teig] Antropologien og staten. En innledning. [Anthropology and the state. An introduction] Norsk Antropologisk Tidsskrift, 17(3-4):186-200. [in Norwegian]

2004a 'It will rain until we are in power'. Floods, elections and memory in Mozambique, in Harri Englund and Francis B. Nyamnjoh (eds.) Rights and the Politics of Recognition in Africa. Postcolonial Encounters Series. London and New York: Zed Books, pp. 169-191.

2004b 'The traditional lion is dead'. The ambivalent presence of tradition and the relation between politics and violence in Mozambique, in Camille Goirand (ed.) Lusotopie 2003. Violence et politique dans les espaces lusophones. Paris: Éditions Karthala and Centre d'Étude d'Afrique Noire (CEAN), pp. 263-281.

 

Book reviews, dictionary entries, reports and other shorter texts

[Forthcoming 2017] "Creating Africas: Struggles over Nature, Conservation and Land" by Knut Nustad (book review). Norsk antropologisk tidsskrift.

2017 "Policing and the politics of order-making", edited by Peter Albrecht and Helene Maria Kyed (book review). African Affairs, 116(462): 152-154. (Advance Access published 15 December 2016 -- available at DOI:10.1093/afraf/adw076)

2016h "In Step with the Times. Mapiko Masquerades of Mozambique” by Paolo Israel (book review). Canadian Journal of History, 51(1): 210-212.

2015f [with Abel Chauque] "Crime and Security in Maputo, Mozambique." Cities Alliance and CMI. CMI Brief, vol. 14, no. 3, 4 pages.

2015g [with Abel Chauque] "Crime e Segurança em Maputo, Moçambique". Cities Alliance and CMI. CMI Brief, vol. 14, no. 3, 4 pages.

2015h "Strategies for preventing terrorism" by Tore Bjørgo (book review). Norsk Antropologisk Tidsskrift, 26(1): 75-78.

2015i "Anthropology, (in)equality and (in)egalitarianism. A comment on Harri Englund ’s 'Human Rights and African Airwaves: Mediating Equality on the Chichewa Radio'". Suomen Antropologi: Journal of the Finnish Anthropological Society 40(1): 70-73.

2013b [with Inge Tvedten and Sandra Roque] "Género, Classe e Espaço em Maputo, Moçambique" Cities Alliance and CMI. CMI Brief, volume 12, no. 7, 4 pages.

2013c [with Inge Tvedten and Sandra Roque] "Gender, Class and Space in Maputo, Mozambique." Cities Alliance and CMI. CMI Brief, volume 12, no. 7, 4 pages.

2013d [with Bruce Kapferer] "How to approach the state in anthropology? A response to Thomas Blom Hansen". Norsk Antropologisk Tidsskrift,  24(2):137-139.

2013e [with Inge Tvedten and Sandra Roque] "Urban space and poverty in Maputo, Mozambique." Cities Alliance and CMI. CMI Brief, vol. 12, no. 2, 4 pages.

2013f [with Inge Tvedten and Sandra Roque] "Espaço Urbano e Pobreza em Maputo, Moçambique." Cities Alliance and CMI. CMI Brief, vol. 12, no. 2, 4 pages.

2012b [with Inge Tvedten] "Fremtidens globale byer" (op. ed.) Aftenposten [newspaper], 03.12.12.

2012c "Tilbake til Durkheim. Staten og antropologien" by Iver B. Neumann (book review). Norsk Antropologisk Tidsskrift,  23(2): 198-200.

2012d "Eusébio (Eusébio da Silva Ferreira)" in Dictionary of African Biography, vol. 2. Edited by Henry Louis Gates, Jr. and Emmanuel Akyeampong. New York and Oxford: Oxford University Press, pp. 316-317.

2012e "Ngungunyane" in Dictionary of African Biography, vol. 4. Edited by Henry Louis Gates, Jr. and Emmanuel Akyeampong. New York and Oxford: Oxford University Press, pp. 465-466.

2011b [with Eyolf Jul-Larsen] Social security, poverty dynamics and economic growth in Angola’s smallholder agriculture. A case study of two communities in Huambo province. CMI Report R 2011:5. Bergen: Chr. Michelsen Institute, p. 33.

2011c "Fear of Small Numbers. An Essay on the Geography of Anger" by Arjun Appadurai (book review). PoLAR - Political and Legal Anthropological Review, 34(1):177-179.

2010d [with Sindre Bangstad] Der kannibaler truer? op. ed. Klassekampen [newspaper], 11.02.2010, p. 22-23.

2009g "Langtvekkistan. Grunnlagsproblemer for studiet av asiatiske og afrikanske samfunn" by Arild Engelsen Ruud (book review). Forum for Development Studies, 36(2):213-216.

2008 "På Barheidas tid. Familjekrönika från savannen" by Stig Holmquist and Aud Talle (book review). Norsk Antropologisk Tidsskrift,  19(2-3):199-200.

2007c [with Bård Kårtveit] Antropologer i krigens frontlinje [op. ed.]. Dagbladet [newspaper], 23.10.07.

2006b [with Sindre Bangstad] Sør-Afrika og "motsatt apartheid" [op. ed.]. Bergens Tidende [newspaper], 15.12.06.

2005 War, peace and development in Mozambique: A critical assessment. Commissioned study for Chr. Michelsen Institute in June 2005 being an assessment of the applicability of Paul Collier et al.'s "Breaking the conflict trap" to the case of Mozambique. Bergen: Chr. Michelsen Institute, p. 83.



For a list of all publications, papers, interviews and public debates, see the overview in UiB's publications database CRISTIN here.

For an alternative presentation, see http://uib.academia.edu/BjornEngeBertelsen where some unpublished papers are also available.

Publications in national current research information system (CRIStin)

Regional focus: Southern Africa, Mozambique, Zimbabwe, Africa

Thematic focus: Egalitarianism, state formation, sovereignty, memory, history, violence, war, tradition and traditional authorities, poverty, legal anthropology, political anthropology, urban anthropology, political ecology

2014-2019: Participant in the ERC-funded project Egalitarianism: Forms, Processes, Comparisons, UiB.

2012-2015: The Ethnography of a Divided City. Socio-Politics, Gender and Poverty in Maputo, CMI.

2011-2016: Participant in the project Gender and Pentecostal Christianity: A comparative analysis of Gender in Pentecostal Christianity with focus on Africa and Melanesia, headed by prof. Annelin Eriksen, UiB.

2010-2014: Social imaginaries of death, suffering and accumulation. Urban spaces of insecurity and poverty in Mozambique and Zimbabwe (postdoctoral project). Dept. of social anthropology, University of Bergen.

2004-2010: An ambivalent heritage: Violent transformations of tradition in local and national contexts in Mozambique (PhD project). Dept. of social anthropology, University of Bergen and Uni Global.

2005-2010: Madal in between the colonial and the postcolonial era. Project under In the wake of colonialism, Uni Global and UiB. 

2009-2011: Participant in the project Poverty reduction and gender justice in contexts of legal pluralism, CMI.

2004-2010: Affiliated with the Challenging the state project at the Dept. of social anthropology, University of Bergen.