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Histories and Historicities in Amazonia By Neil L. Whitehead

Histories and Historicities in Amazonia by Neil L. Whitehead

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Summary

Presents a collection of fieldwork and the theoretical perspectives that illuminate how a range of Native communities in the Amazon River basin, and those they encounter, use the past to make sense of their world and themselves. This book examines the particular foundations and significance of history and historicity in various communities.

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Histories and Historicities in Amazonia Summary

Histories and Historicities in Amazonia by Neil L. Whitehead

Anthropologist Neil L. Whitehead presents a collection of recent fieldwork and the latest theoretical perspectives that illuminate how a range of Native communities in the Amazon River basin, and those they encounter, use the past to make sense of their world and themselves. In recent decades, scholars have become increasingly aware of the role the past plays in the construction of culture and identity. Not only can the past be represented and codified overtly in various ways and media as a history, it also operates more fundamentally and pervasively in cultures as a mode of consciousness or way of thinking about the world, a historicity. In addition to examining the particular foundations and significance of history and historicity in such communities as the Guaja, Wapishana, Dekuana, and Patamuna, the contributors to this volume consider more broadly how different natural and cultural features can help shape historical consciousness: landscape and territory; rituals such as feasting; genealogy and kinship; and even the practice of archaeology. Also of interest are activist uses of historicity to promote and legitimize the cultural integrity and political agendas of Native communities, especially in contact situations past and present where multiple and often competing forms of history and historicity play important political roles in articulating relations between colonizers and the colonized. As this volume makes clear, understanding the powerful cultural role of the past helps scholars better appreciate the inherent dynamic quality of all cultures and recognize a rich resource of agency that can be used both to comprehend and to transform the present

Histories and Historicities in Amazonia Reviews

A welcome addition to serious scholarship directed at the uniting of history, historicity, ethnohistory, ethnology and ethnography.-Norman E. Whitten Jr., Ethnohistory -- Norman E. Whitten Jr. Ethnohistory Whitehead and the other contributors are to be congratulated for forcing us to reexamine our ideas of what constitutes history and historical consciousness and to continue to insist that lack of literacy does not make 'a people without history.'-S. Elizabeth Penry, The American Historical Review -- S. Elizabeth Penry The American Historical Review

About Neil L. Whitehead

Neil L. Whitehead is a professor of anthropology at the University of Wisconsin-Madison and the editor of Ethnohistory. He is the author of Dark Shamans: Kanaima and the Poetics of Violent Death and coeditor (with Laura Rival) of Beyond the Visible and the Material: Retrospect and Prospect in Amazonian Anthropology.

Additional information

NLS9780803298170
9780803298170
080329817X
Histories and Historicities in Amazonia by Neil L. Whitehead
New
Paperback
University of Nebraska Press
20030701
236
N/A
Book picture is for illustrative purposes only, actual binding, cover or edition may vary.
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