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1Four years after the publication of the Insaniyat double number (14 and 15 in 2001), the editorial committee has thought it useful to reopen its columns to a variety of research studies with an aim to enable researchers to make their work known.

2This group of 27 texts informs the reader about the diversity of Algerian scientific production made up mainly of post graduate thesis recently defended. The anthropological approach noticeable in a number of works will be probably more and more so because of this discipline recently being introduced in graduate and post graduate training. These texts take the form of analytical essays bearing on urban and rural society, which has met with manifest changes in some decades; we have resorted to a diversity of on the field investigations giving to the case study results the reliability hoped for, for first research. The 27 articles selected are drawn from 5disciplines in Social Sciences and are classified in six sub topics: Gender and family, Youth, Memory, myths and history, Anthroponomy, Literature and make-believe, and Anthropology and territorial planning.

3Actual family reality is the base data on social change experienced by the Algerian family ,which aggravated by the crises, knew a qualitative change from the extended family (el aila) by the mechanism of “introducing family forms which gave a larger autonomy to the couple” in child education, a conclusion made by Radjia Benali. Naturally if the family takes over children’s education it invests in, organises and adapts also to take charge of handicapped children, even if medical assistance is called on, affirms Leila Soulimane- Messaoud. In the changing society, the beauty of the female body is considered to be a certain social value and also a controversial subject as is pointed out by Zahia Benabdellah. This idea of feminine body care aims at least partly, to prepare for a woman’s matrimonial future. Ferial Abbas describes the traditional ceremonies, how rites are practised and the celebrations, the internal logic hidden within families in the old city of Constantine. How female leadership is seen in social make–believe is a question Samira Menad asks by attempting to tackle this approach, in theory difficult.

4Within the continuity of the family, young girls’ socialization thanks to university training seems linked to their choice of future projects, finish their studies, and found a family and eventually find a job. In questioning the real contribution of the university as an institution, Imen Merabet reveals the strategies deployed by the students who measure their relative autonomy faced with family traditions. Still in the topic devoted to ‘Youth’, according to Mustapha Medjahdi, the use of television programmes by young socially heterogeneous Algerians can hide the complexity of social relationships within the society. After Training and leisure, work remains the main concern for young people; Tayeb Rehail tries to understand the social and economic practices of rural unemployed youth living in a mountain municipality of Little Kabylia, faced with a society which despises them. Also rather alarming is the loss of reference, loss of identity of those young teenagers becoming delinquents in a decadent political, familial and economic context, which Khadidja Mokeddem describes in her research as progressing since the 1990’s.

5In the third sub topic entitled ‘Memory, myth and history’, Fouad Nouar considers the workers memory by looking at the planned development period for industry and that of national Company privatization. He tries to depict the actual workers’ reality, after the sackings induced by economic opening up and underlines the change in working culture in Algeria. Memory is also evoked through the photos of the France Press Agency, dated from the Algerian war, thanks to a detailed inspection carried out by Eléonore Bakhtadzé; these photos give a certain visibility to Algerians who, through three events, impose themselves at the end as the actors of the political scene. By analyzing three literary texts, Leila Dounia Mimouni tries to show by what techniques the authors are bound to use like Raymond Aron, André Malraux, and Amine Maalouf to fill the absence of reality in the texts narrated. The passing from oral narration to the writing of a relative event in Greek history allows Lotfi Hicham Zerga to determine the literary procedures used while noting the political and religious logic relative to the destiny problematic question in Greek make- believe.

6The field of research in ‘Anthroponomy’ is enriched firstly by both Yasmina Zemouli’s and Houda Djebbès’s articles which present a logical continuity to the idea of time and space. After the territorial occupation and agricultural remodelling the colonial power continued its work in modifying family names, at the end of the 19th C. Using as an illustration, the attribution of a simplified name for identity emerges as a fruitful field of study of the significant changes operated all along the 20thC at Constantine. Thus in a close approach, Nebia Dadoua-Hadria tries to make a comparison relating forenames used by families and this during the last 25 years of the century, by considering a semi urban municipality of the Oran Coastal region and an other rural site situated in the Mountains of Tlemcen. The anthropological approach adopted attempts to clarify the diverse significations drawn from references of historical, religious, aesthetic and nationalistic nature…

7Emerging in the sub topic ‘Literature and make-believe’ is the unwanted place given to the literature produced outside Algeria. Thus through the writing of Wole Soyinka, and Tahar Benjelloun centred on Sacredness and madness, Kahina Bouanane outlines a treatment based on surrealistic thought, breaking away from the classical norms set down. Alongside the ambivalence of official speech and the mixture of Sacred and profane used by both writers, it’s probably a matter of questioning the weight of the cultural practices played in Sub Saharan Africa and North Africa in this type of writing. The novels written in France by second generation immigrants are the subject of analyses by Belgacem Belarabi, Nadia Bentaifour and Lila Medjahed. Nina Bouraoui’s two texts consider the identity question, through narration, the first novel (La Voyeuse Interdite) treats women’s statute and their marginalization in the Algerian family, while the second (Poing Mort) sets the topic of death accompanied by a symbolic refusal approach. At the same level and through two novels by Azouz Begag (Les Chiens Aussi, Dis Oualla), Leila Medjahed talks about the identity question which is mentioned by the author using self derision as a permanent means at the same time as knowing oneself and of knowing the Other. From another source a reading of Mouloud Feraoun’s novel (Le Fils du Pauvre) in so much as a type of North African literature combining biography and fiction at the same time. According to Dalila Belkacem, the time created there puts a certain distance between the life lived by the author and the moment of writing the novel.

8Within the sub topic ‘Anthropology and territorial planning’ two ideas cross the six articles suggested: that of change and adaptation. This territorial mutation brought to light by Tayeb Otmane about the relative passage from a pastoral landscape to an agricultural one, in the High steppe plains of Tiaret county, is explained mostly by putting the law relative to agricultural land property accession into practice, and by the help given by the State with a view to introducing irrigation in a fragile geographic milieu and installing this productive activity in the economy of different regions. At the contact of the steppe and the Tell mountains, life in the Medrissa territory belonging to the same county, would seem founded on an anthropological approach which covers the history of nomad Arab tribe settlement; while describing actual behaviour of a population marked by social customs and recent stamp of modern life, Mansour Margouma insists on community structures, solidarity, matrimonial alliances, and the yearly marabout saint celebrations…. Still within underprivileged zones, the Jijel territory attracts attention because of a coastal strip of narrow plain and huge mountain background. The cartographic treatment carried out by Naziha Boudjerda is certainly a contribution to an understanding of this underprivileged space but the monograph produced runs counter to the effects explained of a politically planned development, insufficiently perceived in its vision, its concrete results and its deficiencies. For town planning, the land question always remains central because of the non mastery of land allocation and the economic stakes putting various social groups in competition; in this way land appropriation forms a redoubtable problem to planners and deciders. Larbi Belouadi considers the town of Saïda where recent urban dynamism is reflected by a resulting spatial spreading and by increasing population mobility. Beyond the disordered expansion of urban built up areas, social differentiation is more confirmed than shown by the author. At a higher urban level, the massive production of high rise flats in the periphery of Oran is due mainly to social housing which has become the first real estate project as far as land use is concerned. From this observation, Aimène Said tries to point out the local deciders’ strategies, on the one hand their embarrassment by the land choice made and on the other by the economic and social stakes. By studying the regional network of university towns, Wassila Ben Kara Mostefa brings up the subject linking Algerian development policy and its implications on situating universities. She elaborates a cartographic treatment by outlining university organization and regional hierarchy. The failure noticed in the structuring of the eastern university towns of the country in relation to the ones of the centre and the west could seem quite by chance, because of the complexity of intervening factors and it is there that an anthropological approach could bring the necessary explanatory elements for an understanding of this territorial organization.

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Référence papier

Abed Bendjelid, « FIRST RESEARCH II
Anthropology, Sociology, Geography, Psychology, Literature
 », Insaniyat / إنسانيات, 29-30 | 2005, 11-14.

Référence électronique

Abed Bendjelid, « FIRST RESEARCH II
Anthropology, Sociology, Geography, Psychology, Literature
 », Insaniyat / إنسانيات [En ligne], 29-30 | 2005, mis en ligne le 20 août 2012, consulté le 17 septembre 2019. URL :

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