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Yurupari : Studies of an Amazonian Foundation Myth (Hardcover)

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During fifty years in Colombia conducting ethnological, archaeological, and linguistic research, Gerardo Reichel-Dolmatoff devoted considerable time to a study of the Tukano Indians of the Northwest Amazon. The four texts in this volume, part of the yurupari fertility mythologem and ritual complex, "speak of emotion, paint images, construct sceneries". In Tukanoan oral literature, social organization is explained by its relationship to ecology, the hallucinatory sphere becomes a dimension for conflict resolution, and ritual is shown in its aesthetic perspective. To overcome the barrier presented by the tradition in the Northwest Amazon of autochthonous multilingualism, Reichel-Dolmatoff spent twenty years learning four key Tukanoan languages, thus empowering himself to interpret the multivocal meaning of Tukanoan oral lore through an entirely new reading. He places the analytical study of South American oral art on a par with the great exegetic traditions of the Old World. Tukano texts contain coded culture history and lead into the reality of the meaning of oral traditions - meaning contained in admonitions, instructions, and explanations which constitute fundamental precepts referring to social tradition, conflict resolution, gender attitudes, ecology, and many ethical-aesthetical aspects of human motivations and goals. Through Reichel-Dolmatoff's translations and commentaries, Tukano oral art is revealed as an important expression of tribal philosophical and religious thought.


Publisher Harvard Univ Pr
Mfg Part# 9780945454083
SKU 204668690
Format Hardcover
ISBN10 0945454082
Release Date 8/13/2012
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