Among the Tuareg of Niger, West Africa, much local cultural imagery identif
ies aging with increasing devotion to prayer and greater participation in r
ites of passage. It contrasts these activities to evening musical festivals
classified by many as "anti-Islamic" and which are identified with youth.
These ritual and festival frames and their age tropes reveal struggles, as
well as interdependencies, among older persons and their children in marria
ge and household concerns, as well as in wider upheavals in Tuareg society.
The Tuareg data offer insights into cultural constructions of aging and di
sputes over them. They also suggest refinements of anthropological theories
on performance, ritual, and festival processes in relation to life transit