Making Kin Out Of Others In Amazonia

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Abstract

This article analyses the process of producing kinship among various Amazonian peoples, focusing primarily on the Wari’, a Txapakura-speaking people living in Western Amazonia (Brazil). It argues that the production of kin cannot be related exclusively to the domestic or intra-tribal domain, since kinship emerges through a constant dialogue with non-human entities. By examining the significance of alimentary taboos associated with couvade practices in a number of groups, it shows that the new-born is made human by means of the production of its body as a human body in contraposition to animal bodies.

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