The Palm and the Pleiades

Initiation and Cosmology in Northwest Amazonia


Author: Stephen Hugh-Jones

Publisher: Cambridge University Press

ISBN: 9780521358903

Category: Social Science

Page: 356

View: 2582

When it was first published in 1979, this book, together with its companion volume, From the Milk River, by Christine Hugh-Jones, was hailed as setting 'a new standard for South American ethnographers, one to be emulated' (Third World Quarterly). Both are now available for the first time in paperback. The book is an extended study in English of Amazonian ritual. Through an analysis of a secret men's cult widespread throughout Northwest Amazonia, Hugh-Jones builds up a general picture of a South American Indian society, and of a religious and cosmological system that is common to a large area of Northwest Amazonia. The book is also an exercise in the anthropological interpretation of ritual, myth and religious symbolism from a structuralist point of view.

Quadripartite Structures

Categories, Relations and Homologies in Bush Mekeo Culture


Author: Mark S. Mosko

Publisher: Cambridge University Press

ISBN: 9780521264525

Category: Social Science

Page: 298

View: 2392

This book was the first detailed, comprehensive study of Bush Mekeo culture and society.

Dance of the Dolphin

Transformation and Disenchantment in the Amazonian Imagination


Author: Candace Slater

Publisher: University of Chicago Press

ISBN: 9780226761848

Category: History

Page: 314

View: 9020

In folktales told throughout much of the Brazilian Amazon, dolphins take human form, attend raucous dances and festivals, seduce men and women, and carry them away to a city beneath the river. They are encantados, or Enchanted Beings, capable of provoking death or madness, but also called upon to help shamanic healers. Male dolphins—accomplished dancers who appear dressed in dapper straw hats, white suits, and with shiny black shoes—reportedly father numerous children. The females are said to lure away solitary fishermen. Both sinister and charming, these characters resist definition and thus domination; greedy and lascivious outsiders, they are increasingly symbolic of a distinctly Amazonian culture politically, socially, economically, and environmentally under seige. Candace Slater examines these stories in Dance of the Dolphin, both as folk narratives and as representations of culture and conflict in Amazonia. Her engaging study discusses the tales from the viewpoints of genre, performance, and gender, but centers on them as responses to the great changes sweeping the Amazon today. According to Slater, these surprisingly widespread tales reflect Amazonians' own mixed reactions to the ongoing destruction of the rainforest and the resulting transformations in the social as well as physical landscape. Offering an informed view of Brazilian culture, this book crosses the boundaries of folklore, literature, anthropology, and Latin American studies. It is one of the very few studies to offer an overview of the changes taking place in Amazonia through the eyes of ordinary people. "This book is a rich collection of stories about the transformation of dolphins in the city of enchantment. . . . The joy in this book is not just its vibrant analysis and careful relating of tradition and lore, but also its uncanny accurateness in capturing the very essence of Amazonia."-Darrell Posey, Journal of Latin American Studies "Slater's fluid prose reads like a novel for those interested in Amazonian culture and folklore, while her integrated approach makes this a must read for those interested in innovative methodology."-Lisa Gabbert, Western Folklore

The Fish People

Linguistic Exogamy and Tukanoan Identity in Northwest Amazonia


Author: Jean E. Jackson,Jean Elizabeth Jackson

Publisher: Cambridge University Press

ISBN: 9780521278225

Category: Language Arts & Disciplines

Page: 287

View: 3547

The Bará, or Fish people of the Northwest Amazon form part of a network of intermarrying local communities - each community speaks a different language and marriages must take place between people from different communities with different languages. Here, Jean Jackson discusses Bar· marriage, kinship, spatial organization and other features of their social landscape.

Encyclopedia of Sex and Gender

Men and Women in the World's Cultures Topics and Cultures A-K - Volume 1; Cultures L-Z -


Author: Carol R. Ember,Melvin Ember

Publisher: Springer Science & Business Media

ISBN: 030647770X


Page: N.A

View: 6923

The Spiritual Quest

Transcendence in Myth, Religion, and Science


Author: Robert M. Torrance

Publisher: Univ of California Press

ISBN: 9780520920163

Category: Religion

Page: 330

View: 2747

Robert Torrance's wide-ranging, innovative study argues that the spiritual quest is rooted in our biological, psychological, linguistic, and social nature. The quest is not, as most have believed, a rare mystical experience, but a frequent expression of our most basic human impulses. Shaman and scientist, medium and poet, prophet and philosopher, all venture forth in quest of visionary truths to transform and renew the world. Yet Torrance is not trying to reduce the quest to an "archetype" or "monomyth." Instead, he presents the full diversity of the quest in the myths and religious practices of tribal peoples throughout the world, from Oceania to India, Africa, Siberia, and especially the Americas. In theorizing about the quest, Torrance draws on thinkers as diverse as Bergson and Piaget, van Gennep and Turner, Pierce and Popper, Freud, Darwin, and Chomsky. This is a book that will expand our knowledge—and awareness—of a fundamental human activity in all its fascinating complexity.

Blood Relations

Menstruation and the Origins of Culture


Author: Chris Knight

Publisher: Yale University Press

ISBN: 030018655X

Category: Health & Fitness

Page: 592

View: 5519

The emergence of symbolic culture is generally linked with the development of the hunger-gatherer adaptation based on a sexual division of labor. This original and ingenious book presents a new theory of how this symbolic domain originated. Integrating perspectives of evolutionary biography and social anthropology within a Marxist framework, Chris Knight rejects the common assumption that human culture was a modified extension of primate behavior and argues instead that it was the product of an immense social, sexual, and political revolution initiated by women. Culture became established, says Knight, when evolving human females began to assert collective control over their own sexuality, refusing sex to all males except those who came to them with provisions. Women usually timed their ban on sexual relations with their periods of infertility while they were menstruating, and to the extent that their solidarity drew women together, these periods tended to occur in synchrony. The result was that every month with the onset of menstruation, sexual relations were ruptured in a collective, ritualistic way as the prelude to each successful hunting expedition. This ritual act was the means through which women motivated men not only to hunt but also to concentrate energies on bringing back the meat. Knight shows how this hypothesis sheds light on the roots of such cultural traditions as totemic rituals, incest and menstrual taboos, blood-sacrifice, and hunters’ atonement rites. Providing detailed ethnographic documentation, he also explains how Native American, Australian Aboriginal, and other magico-religious myths can be read as derivatives of the same symbolic logic.

Handbook of Latin American Studies


Author: N.A

Publisher: N.A


Category: Latin America

Page: N.A

View: 4034

Contains records describing books, book chapters, articles, and conference papers published in the field of Latin American studies. Coverage includes relevant books as well as over 800 social science and 550 humanities journals and volumes of conference proceedings. Most records include abstracts with evaluations.



Author: N.A

Publisher: N.A


Category: Anthropology

Page: N.A

View: 9599

The Forest Within

The World-view of the Tukano Amazonian Indians


Author: Gerardo Reichel-Dolmatoff

Publisher: Themis Books


Category: Social Science

Page: 229

View: 2888

This is a detailed portrait of how an aboriginal tribe of the remote Amazonian region understands the cosmic dimensions of their partnership with the rainforest. Anthropologist Gerardo Reichel-Dolmatoff, who spent most of his life working in Colombia among the Indian tribes of the North-West Amazon, explores the world-view of the Tukano Indians: their view of the forest as a model of the cosmos; the master of the animals; their complex and multi-dimensional bond with their environment; and their social and sexual restrictions in order to harmonise with the rainforest.

Gender and sociality in Amazonia

how real people are made


Author: Cecilia McCallum

Publisher: Berg Publishers

ISBN: 9781859734490

Category: Social Science

Page: 208

View: 3208

This is the first book to focus directly on gender in Amazonia for nearly thirty years. Research on gender and sexual identity has become central to social science during that time, but studies have concentrated on other places and people, leaving the gendered experiences of indigenous Amazonians relatively unexplored. McCallum explores little-known aspects of the day-to-day lives of Amazonian peoples in Brazil and Peru. Taking a closer look at the lives of the Cashinahua people, the book provides fascinating insights into conception, pregnancy and birth; naming rituals and initiation ceremonies; concepts of space and time; community and leadership; exchange and production practices; and the philosophy of daily life itself. Through this prism it shows that in fact gender is not merely an aspect of Amazonian social life, but its central axis and driving force. Gender does not just affect personal identity, but has implications for the whole of community life and social organization. The author illustrates how gender is continually created and maintained, and how social forms emerge from the practices of gendered persons in interaction. Throughout their lives, people are 'being made' in this part of the Amazon, and the whole of social organization is predicated on this conception. The author reveals the complex inter-relationships that link gender distinctions with the body, systems of exchange and politics. In so doing, she develops a specific theoretical model of gender and sociality that reshapes our understanding of Amazonian social processes. Building on the key works from past decades, this book challenges and extends current understandings of gender, society and the indigenous people of Amazonia.

Consuming Passions and Patterns of Consumption


Author: Preston Miracle,Nicki Milner

Publisher: McDonald Inst of Archeological

ISBN: 9780951942086

Category: History

Page: 136

View: 7628

This volume outlines and illustrates the importance of considering social contexts of food consumption in interpretations of past and present human societies, giving a new twist to the old adage 'You are what you eat'. What we eat, how we eat, are and always have been fundamental to the structuring of social life, both in the past and in the present. The remains of food are also among the most common archaeological finds. The papers in this volume explore and develop ways of using food to write social history; they move beyond taphonomic and economic properties of 'subsistence resources' to examine the social background and cultural contexts of food preparation and consumption. Contributions break new ground in method and interpretation in case studies spanning the Palaeolithic to the Present, and from the Amazon to the Arctic. This volume will thus be essential reading for all archaeologists, anthropologists and social historians interested in the prehistory and history of food consumption.

Historical atlas of world mythology

The way of the seeded earth. Mythologies of the primitive planters : the Middle and Southern Americas


Author: Joseph Campbell

Publisher: HarperResource

ISBN: 9780060963521

Category: Mythology

Page: 136

View: 3486

Through examinatin of related peoples who were unaffected by one another because of their isolation, Campbell brilliantly captures the essentially intact Caribbean creation cycle, the Watunna, and long-extinct mythological traditions. Full-color illustrations and photos.

Ethnographic Puzzles

Essays on Social Organization, Symbolism and Change


Author: Kaj Århem

Publisher: Burns & Oates

ISBN: 9780485115307

Category: Social Science

Page: 274

View: 6975

This study assesses how versatile are the techniques of classical anthropology when confronted by the ethnographically unfamiliar. Each essay seeks to elucidate an empirical problem through orthodox and heterodox uses of standard techniques.


Journal of the Anthropological Society of Oxford


Author: N.A

Publisher: N.A


Category: Anthropology

Page: N.A

View: 5830