Quadripartite Structures

Quadripartite Structures : Categories, Relations and Homologies in Bush Mekeo Culture

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Despite almost a century of contact with Europeans, the Bush Mekeo people of Papua New Guinea are still essentially unknown to the anthropological world. This book was the first detailed, comprehensive study of Bush Mekeo culture and society. Using a rigourous structuralist approach to interpret in a consistent and systematic way the principal meanings and social practices of this South Seas way of life, Mark Mosko provides a convincing portrayal of Bush Mekeo culture and society as a unified, coherent and logical 'whole'. The main force of the book is to explore empirically the logic by which Bush Mekeo symbols are connected. Beginning with native symbolic constructions of space and time, Professor Mosko carefully unfolds the associated beliefs and practices pertaining to the body, to the relations between genders, to the system of social organisation and to the dramatic and resplendent Bush Mekeo mortuary ceremonial.show more

Product details

  • Electronic book text
  • Cambridge University Press (Virtual Publishing)
  • Cambridge, United Kingdom
  • 1139245090
  • 9781139245098

Table of contents

Preface; 1. Introduction: the problem and the people; 2. Between village and bush; 3. Body and cosmos; 4. Sex, procreation and menstruation; 5. Male and female; 6. Kin, clan and connubium; 7. Feasts of death: de-conception and re-conception; 8. Feasts of death: the sons of Akaisa; 9. Tikopia and the Trobriands; 10. Conclusions, indigenous categories, cultural wholes and historical process; Appendices; Notes; Bibliography; Index.show more