Violence, Legitimacy, and Prophecy: Nuer Struggles with Uncertainty in South Sudan

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Contemporary South Sudanese Nuer prophets play powerful roles in interpreting the moral limits of lethal violence and weighing the legitimacy claims of rival government leaders. Their activities remain largely invisible to external observers investigating the making and unmaking of fragile states. Focusing on South Sudan’s tumultuous 2005–14 period, this article reveals these hidden dynamics through analysis of the two most-powerful living western Nuer prophets.

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