While guiding us into the rainforests and savannas of lowland South America on a quest to understand Amerindian myths and rituals, A Discourse-Centered Approach to Culture is simultaneously an intellectual journey into the theory of culture, and an endeavor to fathom the human differences that are attributable to culture, from consciousness of the physical world and time to the ritual practices of chanting and speaking in secret languages. Urban argues that we cannot assume that culture is shared; we must study the question empirically. And the logical starting point for such an investigation is the discourse that actually circulates within communities--around the campfire, in ritual chanting or laments, and in speech more generally. The book contains detailed analyses of myths that were tape-recorded in their Amerindian settings, including comparisons among distinct versions collected over time, and it explores the actual mechanisms of ritual wailing, ceremonial dialogues, and other discourse phenomena.
- Dewey Decimal: 428
- Physical Description: 5.8"x9.0"x0.6"; 0.8 lb; 228 pages
- Edition Info: Paperback; 2000-10-16
- Nonfiction -- Social Sciences -- Anthropology -- Cultural
- Nonfiction -- Social Sciences -- General
- Reference -- Words & Language -- Linguistics
- Reference -- Words & Language -- General
- Reference -- General
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