The imbalance of power : leadership, masculinity and wealth in the Amazon
Title: The imbalance of power : leadership, masculinity and wealth in the Amazon
Author: BRIGHTMAN, Marc
Citation: New York : Berghahn Books, 2016
ISBN: 9781785333095; 9781785333101
Amerindian societies have an iconic status in classical political thought. For Montaigne, Hobbes, Locke, Hume and Rousseau, the native American ‘state of nature’ operates as a foil for the European polity. Challenging this tradition, The Imbalance of Power demonstrates ethnographically that the Carib speaking indigenous societies of the Guiana region of Amazonia do not fit conventional characterizations of ‘simple’ political units with ‘egalitarian’ political ideologies and ‘harmonious’ relationships with nature. Marc Brightman builds a persuasive and original theory of Amerindian politics: far from balanced and egalitarian, Carib societies are rife with tension and difference; but this imbalance conditions social dynamism and a distinctive mode of cohesion. The Imbalance of Power is based on the author’s fieldwork in partnership with Vanessa Grotti, who is working on a companion volume entitled Living with the Enemy: First Contacts and the Making of Christian Bodies in Amazonia.
Table of Contents:
-- Introduction -- Chapter 1. Making Trio and Other Peoples -- Chapter 2. Houses and In-Laws -- Chapter 3. Trade, Money and Influence -- Chapter 4. Music and Ritual Capacities -- Chapter 5. Owning Places and Persons -- Conclusion: Society Transcends the State