El Jadida - Now he is buried in one the cemeteries near Ben Yeffu in al-Gharbiya region. He died a natural death, I was told, a few years ago. He was the imam of the mosque and the Koranic teacher of the children of the duwar when I met him. I was conducting my research on Ben Yeffu investigating the mysteries of jinn possession more than a decade ago when I came across an old man named Abdessalam in his sixties who looked respectful, sincere and righteous. Under his gaze, my role of ethnographer and objective witness to the other was obscured; when I sat listening to his story and rhetorical language, I doubted the very existence of anthropology as a realist science, and the mirror of mimesis began to shatter into pieces of discourse. He was not an informant but an ambiguous narrator. He represented new "structures of feeling", a new form of ethnography. Sitting close to him and hearing the sonority of his words, I realized how excluded we were both from the conceptual science of the European social institution of ethnography. He was a simple native storyteller, a witness of his own era who found in narrative an emancipatory form of self expression. Was he telling facts or was he telling fiction?

The Moussem of Ben Yeffu