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Social Body and Embodied Subject: Bodiliness, Subjectivity, and Sociality among the Kayapo

Author(s): Terence Turner
Source: Cultural Anthropology, Vol. 10, No. 2, Anthropologies of the Body (May, 1995), pp. 143-
Published by: Wiley on behalf of the American Anthropological Association
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Social Body and Embodied Subject:
Bodiliness, Subjectivity, and Sociality
among the Kayapo
Terence Turner
University of Chicago

The meteoric rise of "the body" to the status of a primarycategory of social and
cultural theory, replacing more collective categories of social and cultural
understandinglike "society" and "culture"themselves, has been one of the most
salient aspects of the development of postmodernforms of cultural theory over
the past two decades. The reasons for this turn to the body have remained
shrouded in confusion despite the voluminous discussion it has occasioned.
Even some of the main exemplars and partisans of the new body focus have
been at a loss to account for it. Martin,for example, suggests that the body has
come so prominentlyinto focus because a new body, suitable to the postmodern
era of "flexible accumulation,"is now replacing the old, familiar body of the
previous capitalist era of Fordist mass production (Martin 1992). This formu-
lation, however, merely exemplifies the problem it sets out to solve. Why do
we suddenly find it appropriateto speak of a new regime of social production
in terms of a unique body it supposedly brings into being? Why did not social
thinkers, cultural theorists, or just ordinary folks of the previous Fordist era
conceive of their own era in such terms?Like social thinkersof most, if not all,
previous historical epochs and modes of production,they would doubtless have
found the characterizationof their era in terms of the appearanceof a new body
(as distinct from a new style of representingthe body) bizarreand mystifying.
Martin's formulationthereforeseems to me to be partof the problemratherthan
part of the solution.
The dimensions of the problem are suggested by juxtaposing Martin's
proposition with two very different passages that express ideas and attitudes
centralin the turnto the body in culturaltheory. The first, appropriatelyenough,
is from an interview with Foucault, in which he suggests that his reconception
of cultural and social theory in terms of a focus on the body as the site of disci-
plines of power not only is a more authentically "materialist"position than

CulturalAnthropology 10(2): 143-170. Copyright? 1995, American Anthropological Association.


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all othersocially groundedmaterialist approaches).it is the truthof the body. [Foucault1980:58] The assertion that ideological critique presupposes a concept of the subject "on the lines of classical philosophy" is of course both logically and historically untrue. In this regard. 08 Mar 2015 10:20:30 UTC All use subject to JSTOR Terms and Conditions ..144 CULTURAL ANTHROPOLOGY Marxistapproaches(and. it wouldn'tbe morematerialistto studyfirst the questionof the body and the effects of poweron it. and all structuralconstraintsin absentia. . consciousness. sums up her argumentthat the body alone (as the site of direct ex- perience and concrete.The body has filled the vacuum createdby the general evacuation of the social. and participation.but also renderspasse the Marxian conception of ideological cri- tique: [Interviewer:]Wouldyou distinguishyourinterestin thebodyfromthatof other contemporary interpretations? [Foucault:]. leaving only direct experience in prae- senti as the domain of the authentic..67. and of some (thoughby no means all) social controls.endowed with a consciousnesswhichpoweris thenthoughtto seize on. The second passage.thebody andthe subjectivehavebeenemphasizedin a critique of knowledgeunderstoodas speculativeand rational.This means. [of] classical philosophy. it is contradictedby the kind of socially and culturally contextualized analysis of the bodily grounding of subjectivity thatFoucault himself never bothered to make. As the site of individual con- sciousness.. above all in the modern/postmodernera.91 on Sun. as well as the focus of some (though by no means all) cultural repre- This content downloaded from 193.I'm not one of those who try to elicit the effects of powerat the level of ideology. and political content of theorizing about the human con- dition. [1991:192] As the passage from Game suggests. in effect. all levels of collective social and culturalreality and historical process. the theoretical prominence of the body is partly an effect and partly a cause of a general reductionisttendency to reject abstractcategories and totalizing theoreticalconstructsnot directly acces- sible to individual perception. from the conclusion of Game's book Undoing the So- cial (1991).and. sensations. if thereis any truth. As regardsMarxism.before one poses the questionof ideology. pre-rationalsubjective consciousness in everyday life) is the source of authenticknowledge and truth: Theunconscious. Becausewhat troublesme withtheseanalyseswhichprioritiseideologyis thatthereis alwayspresupposed a humansubject on the lines .and as a productof a consciousnessthatmightknowthe whole. by implication. as I shall try to show in this article.. Myconcernherehas beento argue thatthebodyprovidesthebasisfor a differentconceptionof knowledge:we know with ourbodies. and desires. cultural..the authenticof experiencemightbe reclaimed. IndeedI wonderwhether.54. The point for present purposes is that the rise of the body to its currenttheoretical prominence has been an integral part of this general trend. The causes of this general intellectual and political retreatfrom critical en- gagement with the social and culturalconditions of humanexistence (including individual subjectivity and bodiliness) have been much discussed and are be- yond the scope of this article.

or dif- ferent contexts within the same society. psychological. SOCIAL BODY AND EMBODIED SUBJECT 145 sentations of the materialand social world. especially productive activity. and so forth. Anotheris the emphasis on the relativity of the unity of the individual body to its imbrication and participation in various social processes. I have set out some general theoretical and historical criticisms of this ten- dency and its relation to the currentfocus on the body elsewhere (Turner1994). the body serves as the paradigm.the body is an individual. mediated as the prod- uct of numerous distinct and quasi-independentlimbs. and as both a materialobject and a category of discourse. acts as bothproductand producerof this process of appropriation and in many societies therebydirectly becomes the paradigmof the structureof society and the cosmos as well. As a biological organism. at least in two senses. Its biological individuality. or should be." to borrow Marriott's [1976. Here I want to develop a more specifically anthropologicalcritique of the ways the body has tended to be conceived and treatedin much recent work. psychological.not only of individuality. the body appears to offer itself as a basis for a new and different theorization of the social-culturaldimensions of individual existence.phenomenal. and the ways in which. anthropologycan offer comparativeethnographicdocumentation and analysis of social and culturalvariation in the conception and treatmentof bodies and bodiliness.67. it can convey to the This content downloaded from 193. the focus on bodiliness is a salutary theoretical development. in all its material. faculties. is complex. moreover.and continued existence on biological and social inputs from other individuals and from the environ- ment. First. but an individual that biologically depends for its reproduction. and cultural dimensions.nurturance. so- cial. In itself." to use Bourdieu's (1977) phrase. In these respects (its "internaldividuality. It is this fundamentalcharacterof human bodiliness that anthropologyis. The basic point at issue here.54. if at the cost of reducing most relevant aspects of the former to the latter. and the relativization of its external boundaries throughinterdependencewith others). and of equal importance.91 on Sun. is not social or culturalrelativity as such. Bodiliness is rightly recognized as a fundamentalunifying category of humanexistence in all its senses and levels: cultural. The "socially informed body. 08 Mar 2015 10:20:30 UTC All use subject to JSTOR Terms and Conditions . through a process of social appropria- tion. One of the main points of difference between these general remarkson the theoretical significance of bodiliness and many currentdiscussions of the body is the emphasis placed on activity. bodies will be treatedas boundedor complete individuals in different societies. but of the limitations of individuality. but the intrinsically social characterof the human body. 1990] biological. organs. however. in a strategically advantageous position to clarify. The social appropriationof bodiliness in all the above-mentioned senses is the prototype of all social pro- duction. the person constitutedby a socialized and embodied subjectivity is the prototype of all products. and biological. The body is at once a material object and a living and acting organism possessing rudimen- tary forms of subjectivity that becomes. with the implication that wide variationis to be expected in the degree to which. stages of growth. Second. both a social identity and a cultural subject.

is one of the few general ethnographicallydistinctive features of "primitive"society. experiences. at least in some contexts. as an attempt to combine a critical anthropological examination of general aspects of the sig- nificance and treatment of bodiliness in human cultures with an account of the bodily practices and ideas. the body is identified. or the particularsite of social and political control. clothing. that do not pro- duce primarilyfor exchange..54. But there are also many societies (and contexts within our own society) where other perceptions. commonly in the form of more or less stand- ardized modifications of the body surface that then serve. Kroeberremarkssomewhere that the direct alterationof the surface of the body. of an indigenous people of the Brazilian Amazon. We tend to reify the body as an individual. A. L.91 on Sun. [1993:29-31] This article is conceived. from which I quote the following passage: I believe Bengali ethno-theories of the body . in the spirit of Lamb's remarks. to foreground a particular vision of the body that may not always resonate with the "bodies" or embodied experiences of those we are attempting to understand. scarification. It is nevertheless possible to rec- ognize in this formulationa curious truth. bounded. which has tended to present "the body" as a reified. and constructions of the body are highlighted- ones that do not (wholly or even predominantly) assume the body to be local.Direct modification of the surface of the body as a general social practice tends to be found far more frequently in simple societies with relatively rudimentarydivisions of labor. 08 Mar 2015 10:20:30 UTC All use subject to JSTOR Terms and Conditions . materialspace. with the socialized actor or person to which it belongs.and coiffure). somehow trans- historical and transcultural object. can effectively respond to some of the problems in the current anthropological literature on the body.. amounting to an implicit "ethno-theory" of the social body... I must ask . in their ensemble.. as representationsof the identity of the social person.. individually experienced. or painting. Such modifications typically include treatmentsof the surface of the body (for example. the naturalor artificial surfaces of the body (skin and hair... whether some of this focus on the body [in recent anthropo- logical and cultural theory] may be misleading.. Why should this be so? This content downloaded from 193. stable.146 CULTURAL ANTHROPOLOGY arena of Western theoretical discussion the concepts and theories (implicit if not explicit) of non-Western peoples about bodies and bodiliness.. serving . These points have been well made by Lamb in a recent doctoral dissertation. as in tattooing.. tangible.doubtless in partbecause his notion of the primi- tive was itself relatively vague and confused.. The Body as Representation and as Medium of Social Value In all humancultures. in part. decontextualized. painting or tattooing.67. a semiotic use of the body. In all such usages. He proposed no ex- planationfor this phenomenon. the Kayapo. clothing and ornaments)are treatedas signs of the culturalboundarybetween the self or person and its social and naturalob- ject world (Turner1979). This identification involves.By focusing on "the body" we tend to assume that there is (necessarily) such a thing as "the body" that we can isolate. adornment.

such as marksof status. or by his or her ability to speak in this way (for example. anotherrespect in which the body and direct modifica- tions of its form tend to play a role more fundamentalin simple societies thanin ones with differentiatedsystems of exchange. the family cycle. Such a performancecircu- lates in the sense that it is publicly communicated. There is. In the absence of concrete objects that might serve as embodiments of such values or tokens of status.pray.91 on Sun. Societies in which social identity is not constituted primarily throughthe exchange of goods (valuables. etc. give orders.and the values associated with them. the former may easily come to be seen as the naturalground. recite poetry. or commodities) nevertheless depend on the public circulation of symbolic tokens of valued aspects of personal identity.). 08 Mar 2015 10:20:30 UTC All use subject to JSTOR Terms and Conditions . chant. of the latter. Where these forms of bodily appearancecarrythe main load of communicatingthe natureand value of personal identity. and the values and status claims implicit in it may be recognized and accepted and thus confirmed by those to whom the performance is directly or indirectly addressed (Turner 1992). they frequentlyinvolve the direct modification of the body it- self and/or the elaboration of complex semiotic codes of bodily adornment fraught with social messages about the content and value of personal identity and status. the development of gender characteristicsand sexual powers. mental and emotional development. however. Under these circumstances. SOCIAL BODY AND EMBODIED SUBJECT 147 Partof the answer. gender and age grouping. see Fajans 1993). groups. the cir- culation of tokens of social identity and value may not be mediated.67. articulatecollective decisions. The symbolic modification of the body as an aspect of the productionof en- culturated subjects appears to be a fundamental feature of human culture as This content downloaded from 193. it seems reasonableto suppose. such display typi- cally involves specialized forms of bodily appearance. by the exchange of objects (valuables. etc. In such simple societies. at least to the same extent. a society may make use of other modes of cir- culation that do not rely on the exchange of objects. In the case of circulating tokens of personal identity and value. and persons. or commodities). sing. gifts. gifts. appropriaterole performance. That such societies may nevertheless possess elaborate symbolic media of cir- culation of social values has often been obscured by the tendency to treatcircu- lation as virtually synonymous with exchange (for a critiqueof exchange theory in these terms.etc. is that where individual bodily changes (physical growth.54.keen. Status may be marked by the status holder's public performanceof a distinctive way of speaking. Anothermode of circulationwithout exchange is throughvisual display.and even the causes.) corresponddirectly to the main articulationsof social relations (the division of labor. Collectively standardizedalterationsand treatmentsof the body thus become a basic techniquefor appropriatingandcoopting the naturalforces and changes of the body to (re)produce social relations.di- rect operationson the body may be seen as potent means of regulating social re- lations as well as the social identity of the person that those relations define.) in some specific context. One such mode is special- ized verbal performance.

000. and the culturalchanges in bodily presen- tation and related matters such as domestic architectureto which this has led (Turner1991a. and subjec- tivity. 1993a. As White (1992) has argued. if often intermittentand violent. I want to focus on the indigenous system of bodily treatments. The Kayapo: Body Social as Social Body The Kayapo of the Brazilian tropical forest afford a case in point.67. spangles or sequins still in the patternsin which they were sewn on clothing. the culturaltreatmentof the body remains in contemporarysocieties an index of fundamentalcultural notions of personal identity.and adornmentas it contin- ues. agency. comprising most of the drainage of the Xingu River from the von MartiusFalls in the south to Altamirain the north.and from the headwaters of the Rio Fresco in the east to the Curuaand Iriri in the west. the Kayapo are no strangers to commodities and money. Their society has undergone impor- tant changes in that time.148 CULTURAL ANTHROPOLOGY such. The decorationof the body appearsin the archaeologicalrecordamong the originary traits of fully human culture. 1993b). First as a raiding society increasingly dependentupon plunderfrom Brazilian settlements. Beads from necklaces and bracelets. The Kayapo have been in direct. the forms of physical appropriation and cultural elaboration of the body in simple societies lacking in elaborated systems of gift or commodity exchange may afford the clearest and most direct cases of the role of the body as source and medium of personal identity and so- cial production. Just as the semiotic representationof the naturalhumanbody as social be- ing seems to have played a fundamentalrole in the developmentof fully human culture. beneath the facade of Brazilian dresses. 08 Mar 2015 10:20:30 UTC All use subject to JSTOR Terms and Conditions . For the reasons thathave been suggested. distributedover 14 villages. The Kayapo are a Ge-speaking people who inhabit a large area south of the Amazon in central Brazil. from fashion in clothing to ideas of physical health and beauty. afford profound insights into its fundamentalcategories of subjectivity and personal identity. In this article. shorts and T-shirts. as well as its system of social values. and figurines with indicationsof coiffure and body paintingor tattooingarefound in the earliest levels of the Upper Paleolithic. with relatively few modifications. I have elsewhere describedthe ways they have incorporatedcommodity and money wealth into their society. representation. Their population today is about 4. the prerequisiteof any culturally patternedsocial life. These notions in turn proceed from the schemas or processes through which the culturalactor is formed to the social appropriationof the living body and its interactionwith the ambientobject world.54. these means of stylized presentationandrepresentationsof the humanbody implicitly constitute media throughwhich physical bodies and their animal life are appro- priated and transformedinto social beings with collectively recognized identi- ties.beliefs. It is trueof any culturethat its overt semiotic forms of bodiliness. and more recently as the owners of valuable gold mines and standsof mahoganyfrom which they have extracteda sizable in- come over the last decade.91 on Sun. however. contact with Brazilian society for about 150 years. This content downloaded from 193.

91 on Sun. In this as in other contexts of bodily adornment. All Kayapo bathe at least once a day. toucan-bill lip plugs.beaded arm and leg bands. and stages of development of different bodily powers. The physical skin of the body be- comes a social skin of signs and meanings that bound and representthe social- ized self by mediating its relations to the ambient social world (Turner 1979). is thus the essen- tial first step in socializing the interface between self and society. To be dirty. states. the disruption of social relationsby asocial elements and forces. ear pendants. and parrotbreast-feathersstuck over the whole body with latex or the wearer's own blood. necklaces. and coiffure. Cleanliness For the Kayapo. including eyebrows and eyelashes. carries out this same fundamentalprinciple of transformingthe skin from a mere natural envelope of the physical body into a sort of social filter. and bunches of arm plumes.unsocialized forces and energies within. are conceived by the Kayapo not as purely medical or physi- cal conditions in our sense. mother-of-pearlear spools. consisting of distinct sets of items of wear. This content downloaded from 193. Animal blood or hair are among the most danger- ous pathogenic agents in Kayapo medical thinking: if allowed to penetrate the skin as a result of prolonged contact they may inflict fatal disease.or conditions. coiffure. Cleanliness. and the use of a wide arrayor ornaments such as lip plugs. Health and disease.the skin and hair that constitute the physical boundaryof the body is appropriated as a symbolic index of the boundarybetween the individual actor as culturally formed subject and the external object world. attributes. I have elsewhere described and analyzed (in ratherdifferent and less comprehensive terms than in the present text) much of this repertoireof bodily adornments(Turner 1969. or hair to remainon the skin. able to contain and in- sulate within a social form the natural. embodied in concrete terms by the skin. brace- lets. the social presentationof the body begins with cleanliness. They nonetheless possess an elaborate cultural code of bodily adornment. is consid- ered not only aesthetically unbecoming but actively antisocial and even danger- ous to the unclean individual. but ratheras states of social integrationor dis-inte- gration (respectively). not to mention a spectacular arrayof ceremonial costumes: feather capes and headdresses. penis sheaths. crushedblue eggshell stuck to the face with resin in elaboratepatterns. This varied repertoire of bodily treatments comprises several discrete codes.for the Kayapo. necklaces.54. The encroachmentof dirt (natural. 1979). or above all to allow traces of animal substances such as blood.including body painting.feather pendants. defined as the re- moval of all naturalexcrescence from the surface of the body. styles of body painting. that serve to encode specific messages relating to modes. and sashes of beads or reddenedcotton string.and particularlyani- mal) on the surface of the social body represents. SOCIAL BODY AND EMBODIED SUBJECT 149 Until recently the Kayapo wore no clothing in the Western sense. 08 Mar 2015 10:20:30 UTC All use subject to JSTOR Terms and Conditions . however. Facial and Bodily Hair The removal of facial hair.67. meat.

or with whom she or he is involved in (re)pro- ducing the bodily existence of others. Young men begin to wear their hair long again when. wearing it clipped short denotes the opposite state as produced by weaning and the absence of sexual activity. The fundamentalidea underlyingthe social meanings of Kayapo coiffures is that bodiliness. in public recognition of their ability to engage in sexual relations potentially leading to pregnancy and. in the sense of participationin the life of a body. This content downloaded from 193. as adolescents.91 on Sun. in recognition of their sharing of their physical being with procreative partnersand offspring. however. whose bodily boundarieshave be- come closed and clearly defined as those of autonomous individuals). with nursing being considered a continuation of the physical continuity of motherand child established in the womb. or the death of a spouse or child. which is also the word for the leaves of plants and trees."Reproductiveprocesses" is takenhere in the Kayapo sense. or separationor isola- tion from such physical mutuality. Upon weaning. they receive their penis sheaths.54. bodily participa- tion or intercoursewith others in reproductiveprocesses. called 'o. 08 Mar 2015 10:20:30 UTC All use subject to JSTOR Terms and Conditions . which includes both reproductive sexual intercourse and the physical continuity of parents and children in gestation and nursing. signaling the severing of such a connection and consequent re- tractionof the continuum of the individual's bodily existence to the boundaries of his or her own body.150 CULTURAL ANTHROPOLOGY Facial and bodily hair. At the death of a spouse or child. Hair of the Head The cutting of the hair of the head comprises a distinct code. Actively procreative adults of both genders continue to wear their hair long. specifically others involved in producing her or his own bodily existence. Wearing the hair long denotes such a state of bodily continuity andparticipationwith oth- ers. Old people living as widows or widowers may keep their hair permanentlycut short in public recognition of their bereaved condition. At birth. the hair is again cut short. Pubic hair seems to appear only in adulthood and may be plucked.he marksthe severance of this directphysical bond by cutting his hair and painting himself black. is distinguished from the hair of the head (kin). is not re- stricted to the individual body. Infantswear their hair long until weaning. communicat- ing information about the individual's stage of development. they then being considered to have become fully distinct social and biological individuals whose "skin has hardened"(in other words. The father also participates in this continuity through repeated intercourse during preg- nancy. hence. marriage.Girls start to wear their hair long somewhat later. but may involve the individual in direct partici- pation in the living bodies of others. his infusions of semen being thoughtto nourish the developing fetus. after a rite that signals their readiness for childbirth (by which time they may have been having sexual relations for half a dozen years). childrenof both genders have their hair cut short. although especially in older individuals it may simply be left to grow. The Kayapo have very little body hair.67.

is applied to the trunk of the body. Both the infantile and adult styles. and nomenclature. The women's style used for infants thus emphasizes individuation as the result of a prolonged and intense interactionbetween a socializing adult and a child. consisting of broad strokes or areas of black. the coarseradult style is typically applied in com- munal groups. 08 Mar 2015 10:20:30 UTC All use subject to JSTOR Terms and Conditions . the animal names of the patterns comprising the repertoireof the adult style. and reproductivity.g.In this style. usually applied directly with the hand or occa- sionally with a stampmade of the rind of a fruit.54.Boys cease to be painted in this way after weaning. Black paint. Painting a child in this style requires hours of patient work. the upper This content downloaded from 193. Infants and young children of both sexes are painted with intricate geometrical designs composed of a limited stock of formal elements. each total composition being unique. contrastingstyles.91 on Sun.employ the same conventions with respect to the application of colors to regions of the body. Only women paint in this style. and adult women may occasionally paint one anotherin the same way. when no adult kinswoman has the time at her disposal to paint them in the more elaborate style. each being a unique con- figuration of abstract geometrical elements. stripes or spots). con- text of execution. culturally stereotyped identities produced through commun- ally organized social activity. a single overall pat- tern is created. Men paint men and boys (at least from the time the latter are inducted into the men's house). sensory capacities. The painting of the body marks stages and modes of socialization of the body's natural powers: muscularstrengthand energy. despite their differences in design. typically. who must patiently submit to the process of being configured into a cul- turallydefined unity. Whereas the elaborate infantile style is applied individually to one child (or older girl or woman) at a time. col- lective painting sessions were held every two weeks or so and were the main ac- tivity of the women's age sets during most of the year). as each line and element is tracedon the skin in black with a stylus made of the cen- ter rib of a leaf. and women paint women and girls (in earlier times before the general use of clothing. but girls may continue to be painted in this style from time to time. design elements. usually called after an animal or fish species it is thought to re- semble. charcoal..67. SOCIAL BODY AND EMBODIED SUBJECT 151 Body Painting The bodies of Kayapo of all ages and genders are painted according to a code comprising colors. Older boys and men are invariably painted in another style. and the mapping of all of these onto distinct bodily regions and stages of growth. consideredin the context of their ap- plication in communal social groups. and spittle. or else simply by the dominant design element (e. connote the socialization of fully devel- oped natural(animal) powers throughcollective social organization and activ- ity. a mother or grand- motherpaints her own child or grandchild. It should be noted that infants may also be painted in the adult style. while the adult men's and women's style emphasizes col- lectively shared. usually age sets or ceremonial groups. usually made from a mixtureof the juice of the geni- papo fruit. Two colors are employed: black and red. sexuality. It is also significant thatwhereas the overall body patternsproducedin the infantile style have no names.

taken in conjunction with the areas of the body to which they are applied. or naturalstates incompatible with normal social existence (death.Red (kamrek. 08 Mar 2015 10:20:30 UTC All use subject to JSTOR Terms and Conditions . Heightening (that is. and occasionally over the mouth as well. being referredto in keening as "transformationinto an animal"). is conceived as a reversion to a naturalstate.a word without other signifi- cations). which cover only this inner. arelocated. Black designs or stripes are also paintedon the cheeks.67. It is the exclusive medium of the designs. comprising both the infantile and adult styles. is applied to the calves and feet.152 CULTURAL ANTHROPOLOGY arms. energy. It is consistent with this analysis that in rituals associated with war and the killing of jaguars. The entire face may be painted red. along the edges of the hair over the forehead. as tuk. a coat of red some- times even being applied over freshly painted black cheek designs. while the artificially activated peripheralzone of the body is metaphoricallyappropriatedto repre- sent its outside or surface. red is invariably applied as a uniformcovering of the whole area in question.feet.infra- social appetites. Kayapomen replace the usual bandof red across the eyes with a band of black. The two colors have symbolic associations which. Note that here the blackened (socially repressed) center of the body is made to stand for the presocial. central region of the body. while black is applied to the centralregion of the body which is the source of its natural. by contrast. tuk.91 on Sun. and in general the intensification of the interactionof the embodied individual with ambient reality. encode fundamental Kayaponotions of the relation between the social appropriationof the body and the production of a socialized subject. it may be noted. In all of these cases. is thereforeassociated with extrasocial. its interface with the world. the intended effect is the reverse of normal social intercourse:not heightened mutual interaction. made from the crushed seed of the urucu bush mixed with palm oil or spittle. sensory acuteness.but This content downloaded from 193. Red paint. and eyes). powers. taboo. also means "dead. The contrastinguse of the two colors thus establishes a binaryclassification and set of metaphoricaliden- tities (center/inside: periphery/outside:: asocial/repressed: socialized/intensi- fied) thatunderliethe system of bodily adornmentand notions of bodiliness and embodied subjectivity as a whole.and the face. typically in a band across the eyes. social or natural. hands. and feet while insulating and suppressing the infrasocial energies and appetites of the trunkof the body has the effect of channeling the latter through the former into interaction with the social and natural object world. the hands and forearms. and the thighs. and energies. with no attempt at internalpatternor design." and the term is applied to the zone immediately outside the village where the cemetery and ritually secluded camps for persons undergoingrites of passage or performingother secret rites.54. the direct expression of which would be incompatible with social intercourse or effective interaction with the natural world. Black. and for actual fighting. red is applied to all the peripheralparts of the body that come di- rectly into contact with the ambientworld (hands. In sum. reddening) the sensitization and interactive capac- ity of the eyes. naturalinside of the body. such as the constructionof ceremonial masks. The word for black. is associated with notions of vitality. In these contexts.

this ornamentis an activizer and amak is "ear". the complementof the faculty of active social communicationexemplified by speaking. Boys also have their lower lips pierced before weaning. implying the subject's active desire for the social relationship of solidarity and close un- derstandingwith the otherperson. following the advice of. and a single reddenedcotton or beaded string with a large bead.5 centimeters. It is. gradually in- creasing its size until it reaches a diameterof about six centimeters by the time he joins the senior men's age grade.67. deriving either from stupidity. more directly tied to verbal communication. The reference here is primarilyto the aural cavity.91 on Sun. 08 Mar 2015 10:20:30 UTC All use subject to JSTOR Terms and Conditions . and Lips Seeing. comprisingmen of grandfatheror father-in- law age. This content downloaded from 193. is associated by the Kayapo with understanding. After weaning. Women's lips are never pierced. are exclu- sively masculine ornaments. A literal translationof oamak might be "to listen for.Ears. Hearing. but metaphori- cally the relation to the artificially pierced earlobe is suggestive. Respecting. Inappropriatesocial behavior. the inception of social and biological father- hood). faulty socialization. as these contrasting treatmentsof the eyes imply. or a bit of mother-of- pearl is insertedin the hole. and reddened wooden plugs are inserted that are gradually increased in size until they reach a diameter of about 2. by a verb.54.usually aboutfive centime- ters in length. leaving an empty hole. or piece of mother-of-pearl." and ket is negation). These meanings are implicit in Kayapo adornmentsof ears and lips and their transformationsover the life cycle. where mari is "hearing"or "listening" and taytch is "strong[ly]"). where amak is "ear.lip plugs. is treatedas an inwardly directed mode of passive understanding. Upon weaning. continue to be worn throughoutlife by both means "to wait").These earpendants." but the expression is metaphoricaland plays on activizing the nor- mally passive connotations of hearing/understandingthroughthe ear. these are replaced by loops consisting of single strandsof reddenedcotton or beaded string supportinga large bead. Hearing. like penis sheaths. as such. social or naturalas the case may be. Speaking. is referredto as stemming from a "lack of holes in the ears" (amak kre ket. Hearing. nut-shell and feather pendant. SOCIAL BODY AND EMBODIED SUBJECT 153 the destruction of the other. The ears of infants of both sexes are pierced. and thus with sociality. The use of black symbolically suppresses the rela- tion with the other as an autonomousbeing.Love or strongpositive attachmentto anotherperson is referredto as oamak (where o. as noted above. or antisocial motives such as greed. and asserts instead the negation or suppressionof that being as the intended ef- fect of the action of the warrior/killer. prefixed by kam ["on"or "for"]. a man traditionallyinserts a wooden dowel into this hole. is conceived by the Kayapo as an active form of knowing directed outward toward interaction with the world. but- ton. or generally feeling socially close to anotherperson or persons is referredto as "listening to [them] strongly" (mari taytch. which inhibits or disruptscivil social relations."kre is "hole. After marriage(that is.

is understandableas an act of so- cialization. and enlarging the bodily powers of hearing and speaking. Where distending wooden plugs serve as mimetic devices for appropriat- ing. signal their(as yet unrealized)potential to become authoritativecommunicators of social wisdom and proper conduct as adult male orators.with its Kayapo connotationof respecting andcarryingout what is heard) the counsel. This content downloaded from 193. activating.The stylized public speakingin which men of this age areexpected to engage is called "teach- ing" (me akre odja). and cognitive faculties located in the bodily organ in question.5 centimetersin length. like the lip plugs used by active sen- ior men. It may be that these properties were felt to make them appropriatefor men of an age to retirefrom public oratory. activated at the begin- ning of their existence as social beings by the wooden earplugs of infancy. distended by the previous wearing of a wooden disc. 08 Mar 2015 10:20:30 UTC All use subject to JSTOR Terms and Conditions .However this may be. The sequential relation of beaded markerof potential to wooden instrumentof activation and amplification is reversed in the two cases. They have gone out of use. symbolically opening holes in their ears. as a device for the active opening and distension of the hole in the ear.54.5 centimeters in diameter and 7.91 on Sun. Considerablyheavier than the wooden lip discs. they were also narrowerand thus more likely to slip through the perforation in the lower lip. although I was still able to see a few in the possession of some families in the mid-1960s. Very old men traditionally adopted special lip plugs made of white rock crystal (kruturd).154 CULTURAL ANTHROPOLOGY Against this backgroundof cultural associations. and lore "taught"by senior men in this way. communicative. thus metaphorically and metonymically activates the sensory. at once mimetic and performative. advice. the piercing of infants' ears.These were not flat discs.andmarkingthe children's identities as beings now imbued with this fundamentalsocial capabil- ity. but cylindrical objects approximately2. consistent with the re- spectively passive and active natureof the powers in question. The amplifica- tion of the mouth by the distension of the lip mimetically "amplifies"this power of active social communicationjust as the distension of the ear by the earplug amplifies the capacity to receive it. the idea is that younger people should listen to or "hear" (mari. which symbolically activates their ability to deliver authoritativesocial communication in the form of public oratory. they were the most pres- tigious and"beautiful"form of lip plug. They were there- fore less compatible with vigorous public speaking than the wooden discs. the beaded pendantsinserted in the holes pierced in earlobes and lips markthe po- tential for the exercise of those powers as an attributeof the identity of the actor. The beaded lip pendantspassed throughthe pierced lips of infant boys.67. The wooden plug. creating the capacity to receive social communicationand to participatein social relationships. The same holds true for the distension of the lower lips of senior men by the wooden plug or lip disc. The beaded ear pendantsof older children and adult men and women signal their possession of the passive faculty of "hearing"social communication. one thatembodiedthe high value placed on the oldest men of the community. by contrast.

and aroundthe an- kles. a measure supposed to promote the strength of the grown child's body and its imperviousness to penetration by disease. is representedby the young girl's sling of beadedor reddened cotton string (arape) andthe maturewoman's baby-carryingsling (ayi). as such. and are then re- placed with looser ones. below the knees. It constitutes.91 on Sun. thus mi- metically emphasizing their "growth. together with the child's shriveled umbilical cord.the as-yet-unrealized potential of the girl for moth- erhood. leg. and by its red color energizing and stimulating. Bracelets and Leg and AnkleBands The symbolic use of bracelets and wrist.54. with room for a baby to sit on the strap. facing the mother'sbody and cradled against it by her arm(the one underwhich it passes). The maiden's sling thus representsa sort of premonitoryform of the mother's baby sling. These are reddened with urucu. and serve as the principal badge of membershipin this age set.markerof a po- tential bodily power and a device for the social appropriationand active realiza- tion of thatpower. much as the small boy's beaded lip ornament serves as a premonitory adult man's lip disc. are This content downloaded from 193. and as the child grows its arms and legs bulge out from under the constrainingbands.It is long enough to pass over one shoulder and under the opposite arm. The effect is an exaggeratedappearanceof burgeoning growth and plumpness. 08 Mar 2015 10:20:30 UTC All use subject to JSTOR Terms and Conditions . The lat- ter is a highly ornamentalstrap some three to four centimeters wide. which emphasize and symbolically am- plify the child's growth both through their tightness and their red color. The slings of reddenedor beaded cotton string wornby young girls of the maiden's age set (me kurerere)similarly pass over one shoulder and under the opposite arm. woven of buriti palm-leaf fiber by a woman's husband. The sling is thus an instrumentenabling women to carry out their functions as caregivers and nurses while working in the garden or performing domestic chores at home. as incrementsof thickness to the connecting limbs orjoints themselves." Infants of both sexes are fitted with bands of cotton webbing between one and two centimeterswide aroundthe wrists. the bands. SOCIAL BODY AND EMBODIED SUBJECT 155 Girls' Reddenedor Beaded CottonSlings and Women'sBaby Slings The same sequentialpairingof a reddenedor beaded string. are buriedin a cleft in a rock or a hardwood tree. Women of child-bearingage make constant use of these slings. When the child has grown up. a device for the promotionand amplification of the bodily power for which it also serves as a public index or sign. It is significant that these bands. marking. allowing the child to nurse as the woman moves about or works with her hands. The mother saves the clipped-off bands as a sort of re- cord and proof of the child's growth. which con- stitute a sort of badge of maturewomanhood. as social forms imposed on bodily connections with the exter- nal world (or with the extremities which connect it with thatworld).67. The bands are fitted tightly. and ankle bands in Kayapo bodily adornment appears to draw on two complementary aspects of these adornments:first. and second. The bands must be removed periodically when they grow too tight.

to include the name-giving extended family relations). 08 Mar 2015 10:20:30 UTC All use subject to JSTOR Terms and Conditions .uncles.156 CULTURAL ANTHROPOLOGY placed at the junctures of the child's inner body and extremities.A feature of this rite is the cutting off of these arm and leg bands by an adoptive or "substitute"mother. That the bands are made and put on by the child's mother emphasizes the role of the mother. bio-psychic powers are channeled into socialized forms of interactionwith the object world. These are the points at which the individual's developing natural. The ostensible purpose of all majorKayapo ceremonies is to confer honor- ific ritual names and "valuables" (nekretch) on young children. The reddened seeds attachedto the bracelet suggest the activation of the power to reproducesocial identity (as dis- tinct from the reproductionof the biological body within the nuclear family). Boys dispense with these bands after weaning. These elabo- ratedforms of the basic reddenedor beaded wristbandsthey wear at other times are covered with geometrical patternswoven of light and darkstrips of cane and inner bark. until the "Black Thighs" ceremony that recognizes their readiness for marriageand motherhood. In termsof the language of bodily space.54. on the child's developing relationshipwith the sphereof social relations that be- gins at the peripheryof the quasi-naturalsphere of immediate family relations. signifies the end of the women's full membershipin their natalfamilies and the attenuationof their connection to it as children throughthe substitutionof theirrelation to their adoptive mothers. This symbolically marks the end of the period in the young women's lives in which their hands and feet have been connected to their bodies throughbands supplied by their mothers (the end of the stage in which their re- lation to the social world is fully defined by their connection to their natal fami- lies). meta- phorically inculcates this socializing form. Attached to them are large bunches of reddened seeds of a hard- wooded palm tree. who acts as ritual sponsor. to which in turnare fastened pendantsof red macaw plumes. in shaping and channeling its relation to the world and thus reflexively defining its social identity. in otherwords.and more generally of the child's connection to its natal family. The giving of names and valuables by grandparents. but girls continue to use them. The removal of the bands. This content downloaded from 193. who henceforth act as their patrons and connections to the social world for all public and ceremonial purposes. they amount to imposing a social form. biological family. when they are carriedor otherwise made the focus of activities during the ceremony. The children honored in this way are distinguished. which connect the naturalcore of its body to the ambient sphere of social inter- action concretely accessed throughthe hands (now expanded.91 on Sun. The imposition of the elaborate ceremonial bracelets on the child's wrists. sanctioned by the ritual involvement of the community as a whole in the performanceof the collective naming ceremony. Energizing and amplifying the child's growth at these points thus becomes a form of mi- metic socialization. throughthe nam- ing ceremony.67. at least sporadically. These spe- cifically social aspects of identity can come only from beyond the boundaryof the immediate. by special bracelets. and aunts is consid- ered essential in order to complete the social identity of the person.

The first set of bracelets. and the associations of the role of the ceremonial companions who make the bracelets. to transformationsin communal status and roles in all rites of passage. recognizes and accelerates this growth. with their raw. of course. The suc- cessive sets of braceletsiconically symbolize the initiands' physical growth.the krabdjuo. In a way analogous to the painting of the trunkof the body black. These effects are semiotically constructedthrougha combinationof color (plain. but also channels it within the new social forms of marriageand membership in the bachelors' (initiated marriageableyouths) age set. They are uncolored and relatively small. natural (unpainted) appearance. consists of macrameconstructions of cord made of braided inner bark.the two statuses inculcated throughthe least double the length andthickness of the first.67. called the "swelling" or "growing"bracelets (i'in agot). These outfits. The function of control and social mediation is expressed by the appellation"black"and by the identification of the bracelets with theirmakers. Bracelets of the second set (also of in- ner-barkcord macrame)aremuch larger. which raises the question of why they should be called the "Black Bracelets" (i'in tuk). with the ex- ception of the necklaces (to be discussed in the next section). are made by the ceremonial companions (krabdjuo)of the initiates.The brace- lets are the main items in the two successive decorative outfits worn by the in- itiands in the initial and final stages of the ceremony. both in the appellation of the first set and in the incremental contrast between the sizes of the first and second sets.91 on Sun. They are painted bright red.5 cen- timeters long and one centimeter thick). krabdjuomediate the trans- formations in the identities and social relations of their ritual relations marked by all rites of passage. embody the naturalprocess of physical growth evoked by their name:the brace- lets of the "growing"or "swelling. The role of wristbandsas symbolic mediators of the relation of the person to the social world is most fully expressed in the boys' initiation ceremony. red. or. 08 Mar 2015 10:20:30 UTC All use subject to JSTOR Terms and Conditions . the direction of their developing naturalphysical powers into social forms of man- hood and marriageability. the size and terms used for the bracelets ("growing. the "blackness"of the bracelets serves to suppress the spontaneous This content downloaded from 193.ritualmediatorsof individualpersons." "black"). SOCIAL BODY AND EMBODIED SUBJECT 157 which is what is achieved by the bestowal by the name-givers of theirnames on the children in the ceremony."referringto the second of these sets of bracelets). The first set of bracelets. The consecutive sets of bracelets symbolize physical growth. individual development. black). though thick (approximately7. more precisely.and the social promotion and activation of their inter- action with the social world of community and men's house on the basis of these new roles.54." The second set in turnembody both the fur- ther amplification of the growth of naturalpowers representedby the first set and the control and mediation of these powers into the social forms metonymi- cally associated with the bracelets:marriageand bachelorhood. The initiation. in which two consecutive sets of bracelets become the key symbols aroundwhich the ceremony as a whole is focused (the ceremony as a whole is called the "Black Bracelets.

the unique and all-important powers of understandingand communication). which certifies them as able to enter into sexual rela- tions potentially leading to marriage. The transitionfrom uncolored to reddenedbracelets simultaneously ener- gizes and intensifies the new forms of interactionwith the social world. It is significant that this feather necklace is made by the initiand's ceremonial wife's father.The representationof the affinal relationshipwith the wife's parents. the locus of the so- cialized senses and understanding. and the lower legs and ankles as connections to the feet. namely thatthis formof necklace would hang over a woman's breasts and overlap with her baby-carryingsling. forcing the penis back into the body and preventing erection. is a majorfeature of the boys' initiation into the marriageablebache- lors' age set. This.54. the constricted gateway through which the youth must eventu- ally pass into adulthood. Penis Sheaths The Kayapo bestow penis sheaths on boys shortly before or at the time of the bachelors' initiation. imposition of This content downloaded from well as symbolic. The sheath is thus both a public recognition of the mature sexuality of the youths and an instrumental.91 on Sun. and providing the latter with an irresistible temptation for tugging. It is therefore con- sistent with the general principles of Kayapo bodily adornmentthat necklaces should be used to signify the social channeling or imposition of control on the bodily powers located in the head (in this case.The sheath is a small cone woven of inaja palm is thus also the key symbol of the socialization of his powers of understandingand communication in their adult form. Necklaces The head is the most importantextremity of the body. Kayapo explain that its purposeis to prevent public display of any partof the glans of a sexually active. and otherwise harassing the mother. 08 Mar 2015 10:20:30 UTC All use subject to JSTOR Terms and Conditions . normativesocial forms of relationshipslike marriageand age set member- ship. At any rate. matureman's penis.158 CULTURAL ANTHROPOLOGY expression of their new powers. Necklaces are to necks as bracelets are to wrists and anklets to ankles. implying or suggesting erection." The bestowing of two consecutive necklaces. chewing.Elaboratenecklaces made of in- dividually cut and ground bits of mother-of-pearl bound onto a cotton coil stained red or black and often paralleled by additional strandsof cotton strung with beads are a prominentitem in the decoration of infants of both sexes. the first of simple inner- bark cords and the second a complex and delicate constructionof feathers tied to thatit protrudesandholds the sheathon. In later childhood and adulthood these necklaces are worn only by males. interfer- ing with the handling and nursing of her baby. There may be a practicalreason for this. and ends in a small hole throughwhich the foreskin is drawn. It fits over the end (glans) of the penis. is felt to be ultimately shameful.The neck which connects it to the trunk is analogous in this functional sense to the wrists and forearmsas connections to the hands. the baby sling appearsto function as the woman's "neck- lace. channeling and socializing them within the new.

In these respects. CeremonialCostume:Feathers. This physical connection of both parentswith the child continues in attenuated form after birthin the ability of the parentsto affect the health of their offspring by eating meat when the children are ill (eating meat is thought to weaken an ill person and is taboo for the patients themselves). Sexual relations with women are conceived as potential threats to com- munal solidarity (identified with the solidarity of communal men's groups). The symbolic import of both practices is again the prevention of the direct and socially uncontrolled projection of naturalbodily (in this case. both as a cause of conflict among men and as a source of centrifugal attachment of men to individual family households. which in Kayapo eyes would be the female equivalent of the display of the glans penis protrudingthroughthe foreskin as the result of a public erection for a man.91 on Sun. and collectively escort or attendthe ritualsof marriageand firstbornchildren. and the channeling of the powers in question into socially mediated forms of sexual relations and re- production. Sexualityand Reproduction The Kayapo conceive of the roles of the sexes in reproductionin symmet- rical terms: conception and gestation are effected by the mixture of semen from the father or fathers (conception is not thought to be a unique event) and milk from the mother. 08 Mar 2015 10:20:30 UTC All use subject to JSTOR Terms and Conditions . and Claws Ceremony for the Kayapo is a collective dramatizationof the creation of social form. which drips down into her womb from her breasts inside her body. the symmetry of male and female sexual- ity accords with the relative symmetryof male and female social roles.67. There is thus a sense in which sexuality for the Kayapo is a collective affair ratherthan an individual bodily function. which are focused on collective male control of female sexuality and reproductivity. In Kayapo social theory. the forms of society and basic This content downloaded from 193. A form of bodily participationcontinues to connect their bodies throughout life. male and female sexuality is treated in radically asymmetrical terms. it is the severance of this bodily continuity at death that is marked by the cutting of the hair in mourning. As this practice indicates. however. the Kayapo do not think of the bodies of parentsand their children as entirely sepa- rate. Women wear no genital covering.Hooves. The communal groupings of men asso- ciated with the men's house thereforecollectively appropriatefemale sexuality throughritualizedcollective intercourse. both before and during marriage. The bodily connection of both parentsto the fetus is maintainedthrough- out pregnancy.54. SOCIAL BODY AND EMBODIED SUBJECT 159 social restraintupon its expression.collectively sexually initiate girls. Both genders must consent to marriage. however. In one re- spect. but take care not to spreadtheir legs while sitting or rising in such a way as to display the vagina. Palm Leaves. and either may precipitate divorce. since the father contributes to the growth of the embryo with each infusion of semen. just as the mothercontinues to nourish it with her milk. sex- ual) desires and powers into the sphereof social relations. Both women and men initiate sexual relations and take lovers.

monkeys.54. in one case. and from sim- ple feather headdresses to giant feather capes. Featherheaddresses and the other types of regalia mentioned above make their appearanceonly in later performances of the same dances (the longer ceremonies typically consisting of repetitive per- formances of the same suites of dances). while the smaller green and yellow parakeetor tinamoucapes tend to be worn by the junior age sets (this pattern. feathernecklaces. is crosscut by the association of certainkin groups with the right to wear one or anotherof these types of capes). This content downloaded from 193.armpendants. or other such extrasocialbody.67. andtherebyto transformthe embodied subject from an ordinary social actor to an agent endowed with the creative powers of the mythical beings who first instituted the relations and cultural forms the cele- brantsare ritually engaged in reproducing.however. A detailed analysis of the tropes and sym- bolic transformationsinvolved in Kayapoceremonialcostume andperformance is presented in Turner 1991b. bows and arrows. the soul of a dead person. or catfish) or. bird. belts or leg bands hung with animal hooves or nutshells to serve as rattles." and the characteristicform of ceremonial costume is the wearing of feath- ers: featherheaddresses. or agricultureare the creations not of ordinarysocial persons but of extrasocial beings.160 CULTURAL ANTHROPOLOGY culturalpossessions like fire. The songs sung by the massed dancers to accompany their dances are thought to be the songs of birds or (less fre- quently) other animals or naturalbeings.The celebration of the great ceremonies that con- stitute the main form of Kayapo communalactivity thus involves the performers in the paradoxically asocial activity of social (re-)creation. Otheritems of ceremonial costume carryout the same theme of transform- ing the social body into that of an extrasocial. crushed eggshell stuck with resin in patternson the cheeks. earplugs of fresh-watermussel shells. Some ceremonies employ masks thatcover the entire body. these also representanimals (anteaters. "fly- ing.the long macaw-plumecapes or krok- rokti tending to be worn by membersof the senior men's and women's age sets. the dancersoften employ simple headdresses. The successional patternsare thus from palm fronds to feathers. quasi-animalbeing: necklaces of claws or animal teeth. and often presentthe bird or animal in question speaking in the first person.91 on Sun. The great feather capes of red macaw plumes (krokr6kti). 08 Mar 2015 10:20:30 UTC All use subject to JSTOR Terms and Conditions . Ceremonial per- formancethereforeentails the transformationof the social body into the body of an asocial creature. Some Kayapoceremonies are short affairs requiringonly a single perform- ance. The purpose of all of these forms of ceremo- nial regalia is the same: to transformthe social body into an animal. The latter often themselves are ranked in a sort of successional pattern. For these. Ceremonialdancing is called me parakeetor yellow tinamou tail feathers (kwen iamu orpeyati iamu) appearonly in the final repetition comprising the climactic rite. usually animals or hu- mans with animal attributes. or capes made of inaja palm fronds.typically a bird. and eagle or vulturedown stuck in the hair. and the great feather capes that ap- pear in the climactic rites of most rituals.featherarmpendants. feathers stuck directly to the skin of the trunkof the body. or for the first performanceof the rites constituting one of the longer ceremonies. lip plugs made of tou- can bills.

and adulthood. The cultural subject. In each case. lip plugs. but the living body in action.54. powers. In all of these cases of consecutive transformationsof bodily treatments. and processes in the form of social relations. originary. or in terms of the signification of these changes in coiffure. TheBody as RecursiveProcess: the Significanceof Formal Replicationin SuccessiveAge-AssociatedItemsof Adornment For the Kayapo. a pure form of con- sciousness or idealist intentionality that inhabits the body while remaining dis- tinct from it. form or state to a final. relatively simple or at least less developed. and they carry the same connotations of developmental sequence from an initial. consciously orienting and directing its engagement in social forms of interactionwith its ambient object world. This double patternof succession. women's slings. 08 Mar 2015 10:20:30 UTC All use subject to JSTOR Terms and Conditions . this time channeled within a social frameworkof social re- production (that is. activities. repro- ductive) continuity. and natural. The subject or self thus broughtinto being is not a Cartesianego. is produced by the reproduction of naturalbodily qualities. comprising the replication of an initial state-treated as unique. the human life cycle itself is divided into consecutive phases of repetitive form by the master symbol of haircutting as described above: from long hair at infancy to shorthair in laterchildhood and adolescence to long hair again with the onset of marriage. natural continuity with biologically linked others through a social form (mar- riage) which serves as the frame of replication of such a natural(sexual. mature. This content downloaded from 193.parenthood. but also the instrumentalityof its active realization and reproductionas a socialized form.with its social potential as yet unrealized-by a second. successive sets of bracelets. and the repetitionof identical ritual sequences in the initial and final stages of rites of passage. This patternclearly embodies an impor- tant set of ideas aboutthe natureanddevelopment of the social body andembod- ied subject.representations. is the fundamental schema exemplified by all the instances of successive paired forms that have been described: infantile and adult painting styles.socially reproductivestate. more socially and corporeally integrated form constitutes the decisive moment.In every case. the replication constitutes not only the means of socializing the quality or power at issue.91 on Sun. the essential purpose of the repli- cated treatmentor performanceis the transformation. from psycho-physical continuity with the parents to separateness (but relative incompleteness) as a child to the re-establishmentof psycho-physical connection in conjunction with the completeness of adult social identity as a reproductive adult. SOCIAL BODY AND EMBODIED SUBJECT 161 These successional patterns representinstances of the same type as the many other cases of paired consecutive forms of bodily adornmentthat have been de- scribed. in other words. andempow- erment of some naturalaspect of the embodied subject or socialized actor.the re- production of the initial patternin a heightened. fully realized form or socialized state.67. the replication of persons and families).and performances. and representations. The life cycle of the social body is thus defined as the recapitulationof an initial phase of raw.socialization.

Concentric space is also identified with a mode of temporalpro- cess.disease-inflicting pow- ers of animals and forest. and its memberswere called the "lower"people. as ghosts. was directly embodied in the structureof the circularvillage. In this zone of destructuredspace-time dwell monstrous be- ings who combine human and animal characteristics(frog people. natu- ral beings like animals inhabitingthe peripheralzone of the forest. the dome of the sky bends down to rest on the earth. with social beings (men and women) continually making forays into the peripheralworld of natureto hunt animalsandmake gar- dens. the limit of vertical space is thus simultaneously the limit of concentric space. in this case of a reversible. and not merely as a static spatial relation but ratheras a linear and irreversibleprocess of growth (from "root"to "tip. self-reproducing social totali- ties. then. passing out from the central zone of society through the cemeteries of the medial "black"or "dead"zone to become. At the distant outer edge of the forest. northand south are referredto simply as the "edge"of the sky. 08 Mar 2015 10:20:30 UTC All use subject to JSTOR Terms and Conditions . was and continues to be conceived not simply as a horizontalbut ratheras a ver- tical dimension. These associated communal groupings of men and women constitutedthe moieties of Kayapo society. This reversible movement is conceived as a continual oscillation between the peripheralpowers of natureand the central forms of society and culture. East and west are the only two cardinalpoints. formulatedin a period when villages were still relatively autonomous. manufacturingdance masks."on the model of the rising and setting of the sun).54. extending about a stone's throw from the village."or from "beginning"to "end. In the eastern and western halves of the circularplaza in the center of the ring of ma- tri-uxorilocal extended family households stood two men's houses. each asso- ciated with women's age sets composed of the wives of the men of the men's house of the same side of the plaza. Thatof the east was called that of the "root"or "beginning"of the sky.67. that is. Horizontal space. Beyond the circle of houses ringing the plaza comes a zone called the "black ground" (a tuk). bat people). This content downloaded from 193. Subject. cyclical natureratherthan the irreversible.91 on Sun.162 CULTURAL ANTHROPOLOGY Body. This single east-west cardinaldimension. called nga or "center. meanwhile continually succumbing to the natural. and its members were known as the "upper"people. by contrast. or otherwise engaging in transforming unsocialized natural powers into social forms. Beyond this transitionalzone lies the completely naturalzone of forest and savanna. with its moi- eties oriented to the "pathof the sun" across the sky from east to west.was and is organized as a series of concentric circles. Here are located the cemetery and the seclusion camps for those undergoing rites of passage. The men's houses."jointly comprise the center of the village circle and of space as a whole. of the sun's path.lin- ear characterof vertical space-time. that of the west was called that of the "tip"or "end"of the sky. being conceived as directly underthe highest point of the sun's journey at noon.and Cosmos The traditionalKayapo conception of the cosmos. Social life is thus seen as a continualmovement from the peripheralzone of natureto the cen- tral zone of the village and back again from society to nature.

markedby the recurrentoscillation between long. concentric dimen- sion takes the form of the boundary across which reversible transactions and passages occur between the central zone of cosmic space-time. and bird forms of ritualbodily adorn- ment and performance. in this case of channeling naturalenergies from the naturalinternal/cen- tral core of the body throughits socialized extremities into the social zone of in- teraction that lies beyond. analo- gous to the mythical races at the outer edges of normal space and the distant be- ginnings of mythical time. is also conceived as a construct of comple- mentary vertical and horizontal dimensions. and the peripheralzone.At the level of bodily microspace. as the foregoing account of bodily practices and representationshas made clear. This content downloaded from 193. normally iden- tified at the cosmic level of macrospace with society. Just as this linear process of growth is imaged as a sequence of two consecutive phases (relatively unsocialized childhood and social adulthood. respectively embodied by the moieties of the "root"and the "tip. normal social beings.54. the associations of center and periphery are reversed. or headless people with their faces in their abdomens). The normally"social" central plaza of the village is now taken over by monstrous half-human.Movements and transformationsfrom natureto society are reciprocally balancedby movements and transformationsfrom soci- ety to nature. As this bodily imagery of the limits of the spatiotemporalstructureof the cosmos indicates. The vertical dimension of contrastbetween head and feet is also a dimension of linear and irreversiblegrowth. moving through stages of increasing peripheralizationassociated with old age (marginalization in the men's house. animal. 08 Mar 2015 10:20:30 UTC All use subject to JSTOR Terms and Conditions . respectively. from short infant (the "root"or "beginning"form of the body) to tall adult (the "tip"or final point of its growth). andfinally existence as an animal-like ghost in the outer peripheral zone of the forest. moreover.half-animal feathered beings. is also conceived as a dimension of reversible pro- cesses." The corresponding bifurcation of the complementary. This inversion is likewise replicated in the bodies of the dancers. bur- ial in the cemetery of the a tuk zone. markedby contrasting zones of black and red painting. Ultimately. Central society receives infusions of naturalenergy from peripheralextra-village space in the form of game and gar- den produce and also of the plant. SOCIAL BODY AND EMBODIED SUBJECT 163 or confuse the vertical and concentric arrangementof the human body (people with eyes in their feet. normally identified with nature.67. The inversion of "normal"secular space-time in the sacred space-time of ritual performance preserves the same biphasic patternin reverse. that structureitself is conceived as isomorphic with the struc- ture of a normalhumanbody which.and within the household).91 on Sun. so the vertical dimension of cosmic space-time is bifurcatedinto two successive halves.throughwhich it is socialized. while the nonparticipatingspectators. this reproduc- tive movement is reversed as the social person ages and dies. in ceremonial performance.and short-cuthair). The social body is the focus of reciprocal transactions from relatively naturalbodily centerto relatively social bodily peripheryand the surrounding zone of social interaction. The concentric opposition of cen- tral trunkand peripheralextremities. look on from the peripheryof the centralsacred space of ceremonial per- formance.

conceived as an endlessly replicated series of irreversible linear processes in vertical space (diurnalsolarjourneys. claws. Both the vertical and horizontal/concentric dimensions of the patternare replicated.54. which appears. a process simultaneouslysubjective and objective. the form of all space-time. peripherallyattachedbodies. and tree fronds has been imposed. The horizon of Kayapo representations of the body. or as the reproductionof an individ- ual social body requiresan infusion of other. intentionaland mate- rial."linear movement also moves from the easternperiphery to the center of the dome of the sky. is not formulatedin abstractionfrom agency and subjectivity or from so- cial relations. and Fetish A general point thatemerges from the foregoing account of the production and representationof bodiliness among the Kayapo is that the culturalhorizon of bodily representationsis articulatednot in terms of abstractconceptualattrib- utes such as sex. strength. the life cycle of the social body. but on the contraryit is built up out of them. as they become em- bodied in materialsocial activities. in other all levels of social organization.The "cosmos"is simply the abstractform of the total process of individual and collective activity which simultaneously pro- duces social bodies andpersons. Both the objective and subjective aspects of the living social body are represented as they are realized in social different levels. hooves. body and cosmos participatein a single process of development. the developmental cycles of family andhousehold. in the same complementaryrelation. society. Conclusions: The Social Body as Will. reproductionanddy- This content downloaded from 193. families and households. this thoroughgoing parallelism between cosmic and bodily form is neithera metaphoricalcorrespondencebetween sepa- rately given naturaland social orders or "systems of differences. and in turn reproducesother bodies through the infusion of powers and substances from its central core across its peripheralboundary). andcos- mos alike is that of a process of action that unfolds from beginning to end through a reciprocal interactionbetween central subject and peripheralobject world. and from there back to the western periph- ery. Rather. and so on. 08 Mar 2015 10:20:30 UTC All use subject to JSTOR Terms and Conditions . from there returningto rise in the east. The fundamentalreality of body. Representation. as the form of an individual act. and natureand society (as the sun in its "vertical. the structureof the community as a whole. The structureof this universal macroprocessis also the structureof micro- processes of social activity at all levels of social and individual action down to and including intrabodilyprocesses. From the Kayapo point of view. age. broadly defined to include both moment-to-moment acts of sensing and doing. and long-term processes of growth.67. and the formation of the universe. sickening and healing." nor a projec- tion of the structureof the social body as the structureof the cosmos.164 CULTURAL ANTHROPOLOGY whose relatively social (human)bodies now form the inner cores upon which a natural"skin" of feathers. but in terms of schemas of concrete bodily activity. the growthof individualbod- ies) which in turn imply repeated cycles of reversible movement between con- centrically contrastedzones of peripheryand center.91 on Sun. communalgroupings andcommunities themselves.

such as which the body (operatingas subjec- tive agency) transformsitself by appropriatingand channeling its internaland external ambient reality and in turn is transformedin various ways by its inter- action with other realities.54. then. 1993a. including the forms of bodil- iness (Turner 1988a. as distinct from a mythical. These objective realities. Such conceptual or aesthetic unity as the social body pos- This content downloaded from 193.or presuppose any concept of the individual body as an abstractor a priori unity.they tend to focus either on subsystems or aspects of bodiliness.67. Kayapo representationsof bodiliness. In contrast to much contemporary theorizing on the body. "the body") as their naturalor primaryreferent. is reducible neither to the biological body considered as given prior to its engagement in socially patterned activities nor to the forms of social consciousness or discourse through which those activities are mediated as culturally sharedforms of signi- fication and meaning. This potential has been stunningly realized by the Kayapo over the last dozen years (Turner 1991a. Rather. This approachhas the double advantageof recogniz- ing the objective reality of the material world (including the body) and the es- sential constructednessof thatreality by human(social) action. They areconstructedof heterogeneous modes of interactionof the embodied subject with objective realities both "inside"and "outside"the physi- cal boundariesof the individual body. These activities. or else on the culturalhorizon of bodily representationstranscendingthe individual body as such. Kayapo social representationsof bodiliness. like important strands of Western Marxian and pragmatistthought. The social body. comprisingthe classification of contrastingtypes of social bodies. The differentiated modes and aspects of bodiliness recognized by the Kayapo all representmodalities of such interaction. This classification is in turn groundedin the socially distinctive propertiesand capacities of bodies of differ- ent ages and genders. in turn. uni- tary "body"with which contemporarybody-theoristslike Foucault have sought to replace it. 08 Mar 2015 10:20:30 UTC All use subject to JSTOR Terms and Conditions .91 on Sun. It is perhaps significant that the Kayapo language lacks a specific term for the individual body as such. and illness. Kayapo repre- sentations of the body and bodily processes presuppose neither the concept of a unitarytranscendentalsubject nor the notion of an abstractlyhomogeneous. health. This in turn supports a consciousness of the pos- sibility of collective political action to maintainor transformsocial and political conditions. do not take the individ- ual body as a whole (that is. and in the process reproducetheirbod- ies and their social world. SOCIAL BODY AND EMBODIED SUBJECT 165 ing. thus startfrom the imbricationof the body in social praxis. and the concept of an individual body is expressed as "someone's flesh" (me on nhin). through which individuals produce and define themselves as agents and persons. in other words. The generic word for "flesh" (in) is used. understandingof the mutabil- ity of social arrangementsand individual identity. subjects and objects. 1988b). 1993b). can be to some extent known. accordingto the Kayapo formulation. It thus affords a basis for a historical. consciously) coordinated bodily activity. sensory faculties. affected. become the basis of Kayapo representationsof bodiliness. and appropriated through willfully (subjectively.

In general terms.67.of social appropria- tion of the real: specifically." The unity of any individual body. Social body and embodied subject. they treatpersons in their capacity as agents or acting subjects as con- structed of heterogeneous. and that this reality contains levels that are not directly accessible to indi- vidual experience. as socially represented. but. I use the term subject to refer to an embodied consciousness possessing purpose and will and capable of agency. The Kayapo represent social persons as individuals denoted by personal they are among the Kayapo. and is at the same time possessed of propertiesof agency and subjectivity.166 CULTURAL ANTHROPOLOGY sesses thereforecannot be understoodas a positive reflection of the naturalun- mediated wholeness of the individual body in itself. Kayaporepresentationsof the body thus im- ply what in Western philosophical terms would be called a realist analysis of bodiliness. the materialreality of the body-in-action.participatein the organizationof social (re)productionand re- flexively take on the pattern of that organization.jointly constructedas active processes of appropriation. The processes through which Kayapo bodies are produced as social ob- jects consist of the willed acts of Kayapo subjects. agent and object. The embodied subject thus plays a dual role in productive activity: both as producerand product. sensory perception. concretely embodied modes of subjectivity that change and become substitutedfor one anotherat differenttimes and in different contexts. includingthe culturalmeanings and sig- nifications in terms of which they are socially defined.54.Subjectivity and agency may ratherbe represented. that is. The performance and representationof bodily activities in culturally pat- terned and significant ways comprises the social appropriationof the material body. The Kayapo realist approachto bodiliness proceeds from the presuppositionthatthe body is an objective reality that constructs itself through interactionwith objective realities both internaland external to itself. this usage does not imply that such an agent need cor- respond to an "individual"in the Western sense or that the consciousness in- volved should necessarily be conceived as uniformand continuous across all the contexts in which a person a mediated and deriva- tive product of the social coordination of concretely differentiated aspects of bodily processes and powers. In epis- temological and ontological terms. 08 Mar 2015 10:20:30 UTC All use subject to JSTOR Terms and Conditions . and of contrasts among a plural- ity of types of social bodies. Realism may be defined for present purposes as the position that there is an objective reality that exists independentlyof the perceiving individ- ual. "Appropriation"in this sense is tantamountto the social production of both social body and embodied subject. by virtue of its fundamentalproperty of being alive and its consequent capacity for volitional action. as I have de- scribed. knowing and feeling. as dividual ratherthan individual and as embodied in discrete bodily processes and modes of activity ratherthan as attributesof a disembodied and integralCartesianego.91 on Sun.or patterns. on the one hand. "the body. That the social body is produced as an ensemble of bodily activities thus implies that it must be understood as a pattern. This content downloaded from 193. on the other.

collective patternto which they conform. In the same social analysis or cul- tural interpretation.willed bodily usages. and pre- paring a meal. this form is rep- resented as the "natural"structureof the cosmos and the mythically established and ritually renewed form of society as embodied by the village community as a whole. and interpreta- This content downloaded from 193. It comprises. living body it- self.from the specific instances they are understoodto govern). acting. like hunting. In the introductionto his recent collection of papers. thus tends to become misrepresented as an objective (natural)feature existing independently of the subject and imposing its form upon his or her activity. and the relationbetween the two (if the term theory can be stretchedin this con- text to apply to an unselfconscious system of ideas not abstracted. The dual role of the embodied subject as both producerand product of its own activity. and otherpopularculturalproductionsthatare grist for the mill of the cultural critic are often fully equal or superior.Kayapo rites of passage. the realism of Kayapo repre- sentations of bodiliness takes a Platonic form. Among the Kayapo. in which the form of the cosmos is seen as replicating itself at all levels of Kayapo culture and bodily activity. The subjective contributionof the producerand his or her activity. SOCIAL BODY AND EMBODIED SUBJECT 167 A Kayapo person assumes such a mode or aspect of subjectivity as a con- stituent of his or her own subjectivity through willed activity involving what Mauss (1979 [1936]) described in generic terms as techniquesdu corps: the use. works of fiction. I would like to argue here that the theories. to the culturalarticulationof the growing.54. gardening. from the structureof the cosmos to the organization of ceremonies to the spa- tiotemporalcoordinates of simple activities. as we have a set of generalpropositions. direction. Fred Pfeil (1990:3) makes the point that the thinking embodied in the films. the socialized body. both in individual and collective action. As a result of this fetishistic inversion. and the general Kayapo pattern of pairedrepetitionof successive rites of passage and items of bodily adornment can be understood as a metapatterning of willed activity directed to the self- reproductionof social forms. as I have the critical theories and analyses deployed by the critics who analyze them (contraryto the virtually universal opinion of the latter). Mauss em- phasized the patterningof modes of bodily activity and presentationas means of disciplining the will and thus of the production of socially standardizedmodes of subjectivity. This analytical account of Kayapo cultural representationsof bodiliness has been an attempt to translate into the categories of contemporaryWestern theory the ideas and principles implicit in Kayapo practices and beliefs relating to the body. as closely as I can understandand translateit. and presentationof the body in socially prescribedways. however.The willful productionof the body as subjectively intendedproduct is elided when the resulting socially patternedbody and its activities are repre- sented in terms of the objective. an im- manentKayapo"theory"of the natureof the humansubject. 08 Mar 2015 10:20:30 UTC All use subject to JSTOR Terms and Conditions .91 on Sun. becomes the focus of misrepresentationas well as rep- resentation.67.Another Tale to Tell. consist in large part of such socially patterned. ideas.

to the extent thatthey become constructedas a unified subject they do so throughthe mediation of intersubjective systems of social organizationand representation. and demonstratesby its own example. see Turner1985 and in press). Social representations of the body are also. fet- ishes of all. when properlyunderstood and explicated. These activities are of varying kinds and draw on hetero- geneous bodily capacities and interactionswith the ambientobject world. andrepresentationandreality. in the terms of a specifically Westerntheoretical tradition).and thus most universal. Kayapo representationsof the body. integralandpriorto any imbricationin body or material activity. in their relation to the material activities of which they form an integral and functional part.I have suggested that Kayapo Platonism is understandableas a kind of fetishism in the Marxiansense: an alienationof subjective self-consciousness as naturalreality (for an analysis of other aspects of Kayapo cosmology and so- cial consciousness in these terms. "The truthof the body. Partof a whole whose structureit shares. but rathercomprehends subjectivity as immanent in con- crete bodily activities. however. at least on a par with the self-conscious theories of anthropo- logical researchers and cultural theorists who typically describe and analyze them only as "cultural"phenomena. and psychological reality implicitly embedded in the unselfconscious practices and beliefs of relatively simple aliterate societies.67. epitomized by the pas- sages from Foucault and Game quoted above. social. perhapsthe most fundamental. as symbols and meanings. Critically understood in these terms. Bodily representationsthemselves serve as media through which this productionis formally coordinatedand its products(the embodied subjects) publicly circulatedin ways that enable them to realize the values imbued in pro- duction as attributesof their social identities. has been explicitly framedin critical terms (that is. rec- This content downloaded from 193. will often be found to possess great theoreticalpower. objects of theoretical analysis ratherthan theoretical constructs in their own right.168 CULTURAL ANTHROPOLOGY tions of cultural. the Kayapo body reproduces that whole through activities that them- selves exemplify the patternit incarnates.54. 08 Mar 2015 10:20:30 UTC All use subject to JSTOR Terms and Conditions . As I have argued. This theory stands in diametric opposition to some of the most widely shared tenets of contemporaryculturaltheorizing on the body." to use Game's (1991:192) phrase. ideological distortionsof the subjective truthof bodiliness. is thus an intrinsi- cally social and cultural truth. It also shows thata thoroughanalysis of the social regulation and representationof the body does not presuppose a transcendental"Cartesian"subject. The anthropologicalanalysis I have offered of Kayapo representationsof bodiliness and the implicit theory they contain. againstthe position of Foucaultquoted above. among the Kayapo as among ourselves. It holds.that is. Thus I have ar- gued thatthe representationalform of the Kayapobody embodies the form of the material activities through which the social body is producedby embodied so- cial subjects. thata critical theoreticaland analyticalfocus on the body does not imply the abstractionof "the body" from social relations and processes but on the contrarypoints toward the integration of body and social relations as parts of a single continuumof materialactivity. individual and society.91 on Sun.imply an epistemology and foreshadow a theory of the relation- ships of body andsubject.

and why the reverse seems to have happened. Foucault. References Cited Bourdieu. in the name of the body. Game. by itself accounts for our current fashion of abstracting "the body" from the total context of social relations and cultural representationsof which it forms partand fetishizing it as the foundationalcategory.ProducingExchange.andLifeProcessesin a Bengali Society. is Martin's sug- gestion that the transitionbetween two such stages. SOCIALBODY AND EMBODIEDSUBJECT 169 ognition of the materialityof the body. ColinGordon. Pp. 1990 Constructingan IndianEthnosociology. This content downloaded from 193. andtrans. Sydney:Universityof Sydney.Jane 1993 Introduction to ExchangingProducts.dissertation. 1972-1977. or truth.ed.New York:Pantheon. Pp. on the other hand.ed. or truth. far from renderingideological critique superfluous. To this extent it converges with the principle underlying Martin's analysis of the different "bodies" associated with succes- sive phases of capitalism.R.Pierre 1977 Outlineof a Theory of Practice.D. Pp.Ann 1991 Undoingthe Social:Towardsa DeconstructiveSociology. Nice. 1-13.Universityof Chicago. and their respectively asso- ciated bodies.Toronto:Univer- sity of TorontoPress. New Delhi:Sage. 109-142. Fajans.of extrabodily aspects of the social and culturalcontext. trans. directly implies a critique of the ideological characterof the body itself as socially mediated least as far as many social and cul- turaltheorists areconcerned. cultural theory. JaneFajans. Cambridge:Cambridge UniversityPress. 08 Mar 2015 10:20:30 UTC All use subject to JSTOR Terms and Conditions . New York:Institutefor the Studyof HumanIssues.67. to have transcended.OceaniaMono- graphs. What it does not support. The whole analysis in this article.43.Sarah 1993 Growingin theNet of Maya:Persons.ed.ed. but ratheras an instance of ideological reification of precisely the kind that many leading proponents of contemporary body theory proclaim them- selves.BruceKap- ferer.Ph.54. Lamb. The currentfetishism of the body in culturaltheory must be accountedfor.of so- cial reality.Gender. however.In Transaction andMeaning: Directionsin the Anthropologyof ExchangeandSymbolicBehavior. McKimMarriott. Martin's claim begs the question of why the changing social relations of production themselves have not been broughtto a similarpitch of social consciousness. while denying the impor- tance.In IndiathroughHinduCategories.Michel 1980 Power/Knowledge:Selected Interviewsand Other Writings. and subjective identity. supportsthe proposi- tion that specific representationsof bodiliness and associated forms of embod- ied subjectivity are produced as integral components of specific social organi- zations of productive relations.McKim 1976 HinduTransactions: DiversitywithoutDualism.Department of Anthropology.91 on Sun. 1-39. not as a straightforwardcase of consciousness-raising by history. Marriott.

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