Hirano (Nomoto), Misa
Cultural Anthropology, Urban Anthropology
The Bamiléké;ké ethnic group originated in western Cameroon, where the people are divided into over a hundred small chiefdoms that are stratified to a high degree. Since the beginning of the 20th century, many Bamiléké have migrated and settled in large cities and plantation areas throughout the country. The capital Yaoundé is one such place. I primarily conducted my fieldwork in Yaoundé, but I also investigated a chiefdom in the Bamiléké region. In a large city like Yaoundé, many Bamiléké chiefdoms have their associations, which I call Home-Village Associations (HVAs), intended for the mutual assistance of members. I investigate a system of rotating savings and credit associations (ROSCAs), which is called tontine in Francophone Cameroon, which are indispensable to such associations. They also reconnected their bonds with their home villages to maintain a relationship between the city and the villages. While being allowed to engage in one of the HVAs as a member, I have learnt their way of life in the city and their way of connecting to their home.
I also study Okinawan ROSCAs called Moai, focusing on local communities in Naha, Miyakojima (Okinawa) and Taiyo (Osaka).