Taken from the Lips: Gender And Eros in Mesoamerican by Sylvia Marcos

By Sylvia Marcos

This quantity bargains with the realm of ladies in Mesoamerica, discussing relatively the non secular and formality elements of gender. As its assets, it makes use of colonial records of the touch interval with ecu cultures, stories of the subjugated indigenous in the course of the colonial interval , in addition to modern ethnographic reports The booklet begins with an research of therapeutic rituals in modern Mexico , concentrating on the "refunctionalization" of historical ideals and practices.From there it strikes spiral-like among pre-hispanic and colonial pasts and numerous offers. The part on "orality" is a methodological concept for the examine of indigenous non secular traditions.The e-book is illustrated with reproductions of historical codices.

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According to an ancient myth, the creators had a fight during which they broke dishes, and from every shard that hit the ground a new dual divinity sprang up. While some Mexicanists have inferred that this legend was used to explain the multiplicity of gods, it mainly illustrates how the prime duality in its turn engenders dualities (Garibay, 1973, p. 25). Life/death is another example of the duality that pervades the Mesoamerican cosmos. That life and death are but two aspects of the same reality is dramatically expressed by a type of figurine from Tlatilco with a human head that is half living face and half skull.

Its roots in the mind-body (or spirit-matter) split inherited from the all pervasive classic traditions of thought proves to be more of a hindrance than help in elucidating gender in Mesoamerica (Marcos, 1996, p. 3). ” In her archaeological Mesoamerican studies, Joyce confirms that gender is defined by what people do, and is thus a performance. She insists that, “as performance, gender is a way of being in the world” (p. 7). If we now turn to the primary sources and to the archaeological evidences in search of an “epochal” concept of gender, we find that it is inseparable from the following characteristics of the ancestral Mesoamerican duality: • mutual openness of categories • fluidity between poles • absence of hierarchical stratification between these poles Hence a gender theory true to Mesoamerican sources must be open, fluid, and nonstratified if it is to embrace the distinctive fluidity and mobility of Mesoamerican pairs of opposites.

Une perspective anthropologique sur l’idéologie moderne. Paris: Seuil, 1983, p. 245: “[As] I was saying to you concerning India, the distinctions are many, fluid and flexible, they run by themselves independently in a web of reduced density; likewise, they are variously accented according to situations, appearing at times in the forefront, at other times almost vanishing in the background. ” (Author’s translations) 26 chapter two day, his/her tonalli (the body’s principal animating force or entity, see chapter 6) would acquire positive tendencies and inclinations.

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