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Lecture 10

Anthro 1AA3 Lecture 10.docx

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Karen Mc Garry

Anthropology 1AA3 Lecture 10 – Guardians of the Flutes • Sexuality very different from our own • Sambian warriors built fortified villages in rainforest to escape war, but war returned in new neighbouring tribes • 2000 Sambians, living in family villages that are hostile & suspicious of each other • War is a large part of their culture • Wear pig tusks in their nose, exposes erect penis and backside to show aggression • Sambian men kill each other straight in the face  lacking courage in battle is to fail as a man • To achieve warrior-hood takes years  must understand how strength as a man is dependent on warrior behaviour • “Learn” fundamental differences between men & women • Separate men’s & women’s paths • Men’s house at the top of the village and back of a house • Women have menstrual hut down but the river, menstrual blood will infect & drain strength of men, so women cannot stand above men (crouch to enter house), have the front of the house • Afraid women will “pollute men” • Boys stay with women until they are old enough to know they are men, then they cross over, sit on a sporran and join male culture • Boys need help from age 7-10 to grow into men, girls do not • Females seem to support this • Do not know what the initiation is until they go through it • Can only live with women when they become fathers • Fear is a large part of the initiation • Thrashing cleans boys skin of mother’s polluting influence • Most important teachings: do not go home to mother, do not steal another man’s woman • Accompany boys with guardians through the initiation • Thumping instills the law that forbids adultery • Women beating fire demonstrate that they want to keep their sons with them • Women don’t like it, but know it has to be done  don’t like to be seen crying • Flutes have a special significance, but they are not allowed to see them until later • Believe rubbing head with tree anchors soul to body • Red flowers symbolize menstrual blood • Enter through a passage symbolizing rebirth through “vagina” to be warriors • Thrash then rub with stinging plants • Elders threaten them not to reveal sacred rituals • Boys are sleep & food deprived for days, then fed masculine food of leaves • Finally allowed to wear sporum, which is a grass skirt that men wea
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