Gbaya

people
also spelled  Baya  or  Gbeya  

      a people of southwestern Central African Republic, east-central Cameroon, northern Congo (Brazzaville), and northwestern Congo (Kinshasa). Numbering about 970,000 at the end of the 20th century, they speak a language of the Adamawa-Ubangi subgroup (Adamawa-Ubangi languages) of the Niger-Congo language family (Niger-Congo languages) that is related to those of their Banda and Ngbandi neighbours.

      The Gbaya migrated southeastward from what is now the Hausa area of northern Nigeria early in the 19th century, fleeing the jihad (holy war) of Usman dan Fodio. Led by Gazargamu, their war chief, the Gbaya vanquished, assimilated, or drove ahead of them the peoples that they encountered. Contemporary Gbaya subgroups, which include the Bokoto, Kara, Buli, Kaka, and Bwaka, reflect this integration of defeated peoples. The Gbaya, in turn, were attacked annually by Fulani slavers from what is now northern Cameroon.

      The Gbaya resisted French forces throughout the colonial period, notably in the early 1920s, because of the brutal impressment of Gbaya men and women as porters and labourers. In 1928 they began what became a three-year revolt in response to conscription of slave labour for the Congo-Ocean Railway. A French “nightmare campaign” decimated the Gbaya to an extent that was evident for several decades.

      The Gbaya observed patrilineal descent and traditionally had a stateless society. In the past, war chiefs were selected only in times of crisis and were divested of their powers thereafter. Village chiefs were arbiters and symbolic leaders, but they were later made into administrative magistrates by the French colonizers. Clans were the primary identity group within which marriage, religious ceremonies, and trade with outsiders (e.g., Arab caravanners) were regulated. Age groups called labi cut across clan identities and further assured intergroup solidarity in times of war; initiates received training in agricultural, social, and religious knowledge and skills.

      Rural Gbaya grow corn (maize), cassava, yams, peanuts (groundnuts), and tobacco. They also hunt and fish. Coffee and rice, introduced by the French, are cash crops. The diamond rush of the late 1930s greatly disrupted traditional life of Gbaya in some regions; diamond prospecting continues to be economically important.

* * *


Universalium. 2010.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • Gbaya — Parlée au  Tchad  Cameroun …   Wikipédia en Français

  • Gbaya — steht für: Gbaya (Sprache) Gbaya (Volk) Diese Seite ist eine Begriffsklärung zur Unterscheidung mehrerer mit demselben Wort bezeichneter Begriffe …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • Gbaya — ou, vieilli, Baya population répartie sur l O. de la Centrafrique, l E. du Cameroun et le N. O. de la rép. dém. du Congo (env. 1 million de personnes). Ils parlent une langue nigéro congolaise du sous groupe oubanguien, proche du manza …   Encyclopédie Universelle

  • gbaya —  adj. D un peuple d Afrique centrale …   Le dictionnaire des mots absents des autres dictionnaires

  • Gbaya language — Gbaya Spoken in Central African Republic, Cameroon Ethnicity Gbaya Native speakers 910,000  (1996–2007) Language family Ubangian …   Wikipedia

  • Gbaya du Nord-Ouest — Parlée au  Centrafricaine, republique !République centrafricaine …   Wikipédia en Français

  • Gbaya (peuple) — Les Gbaya (ou Baja, Baya) sont un peuple établi en Afrique centrale, à l ouest de la République centrafricaine pour les quatre cinquièmes et au centre est du Cameroun pour le dernier cinquième[1]. Sommaire 1 Population 2 Langue …   Wikipédia en Français

  • Gbaya (Central African Republic) — ISO 639 3 Code : gba ISO 639 2/B Code : gba ISO 639 2/T Code : gba ISO 639 1 Code : Scope : Macrolanguage Language Type : Living Individual languages : Identifier : bdt Name: Bokoto Individual languages : Identifier : gbp Name: Gbaya Bossangoa …   Names of Languages ISO 639-3

  • Gbaya (Sprache) — Ngbaka (Ngbaka Gbaya) Gesprochen in Demokratische Republik Kongo Sprecher 1 Million Linguistische Klassifikation Ubangische Sprachen Gbaya Sprachen Ost Gbaya (Sprache) …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • Gbaya (Volk) — Die Gbaya sind ein Volk in Zentralafrika. Die Volksgruppen der Gbaya leben hauptsächlich in der Zentralafrikanischen Republik, daneben auch im östlichen Zentral Kamerun, dem Norden der Republik Kongo und dem Nordwesten der Demokratischen Republik …   Deutsch Wikipedia

Share the article and excerpts

Direct link
Do a right-click on the link above
and select “Copy Link”

We are using cookies for the best presentation of our site. Continuing to use this site, you agree with this.