By Eduardo Viveiros de Castro, Catherine V. Howard
development upon ethnographic description and interpretation, Viveiros de Castro addresses the crucial element of the Arawete's proposal of divinity—consumption—showing how its cannibalistic expression differs significantly from conventional representations of alternative Amazonian societies. He situates the Araweté in modern anthropology as a humans whose imaginative and prescient of the area is advanced, tragic, and dynamic, and whose society instructions our realization for its impressive openness to exteriority and transformation. For the Araweté the individual is often in transition, an outlook expressed within the mythology in their gods, whose cannibalistic methods they imitate. From the Enemy's aspect of View argues that present thoughts of society as a discrete, bounded entity which keeps a distinction among "interior" and "exterior" are totally irrelevant during this and in lots of different Amazonian societies.
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Extra resources for From the Enemy's Point of View: Humanity and Divinity in an Amazonian Society
But my general impression was that the kindred predominates over the village as a category of identification. 26 Contact with whites occurred long before the 1970s. At least fifty years ago, a group of whites massacred thirteen Arawete in the Bacaja area. Epidemics that probably originated from the whites also raged among the Arawete while they still lived on that river. In addition, the custom of obtaining iron axes from abandoned clearings suggests a long-standing ecological symbiosis, even if marginal.
22 Other marks used in toponymy are hunting camps struck during expeditions to supply large feasts (I was honored with such a toponym, YiQdo reyipa, "Eduardo's camp") and concentrations of fruit-bearing trees. In the area surrounding a village, toponyms often refer to places where children were born (mothers seek out the nearby forest to give birth). Garden clearings are also called by the names of the people who opened gardens there. Arawete geography is thus impregnated with memory, particularly that of people's deaths.
During a Kayapo attack, he escaped into the forest with an adolescent girl (his sister, MZD) and two little boys (his nephews, ZS). They were given up as dead or captured. In fact, they had gotten lost from the rest of the group, which had gone in the opposite direction towards the waters of the Ipixuna. Iwarawl and his sister had two daughters, who married the two boys, and all lived together for thirty years as a miniature Arawete society. A hard life, always on the run from enemies: without even time to wait for cotton to grow, the women substituted their customary outfit with small bark skirtsj having to move their camping spot with each maize harvest, they depended most of the time on babassu flour.