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Gender in Amazonia and Melanesia – An Exploration of the Comparative Method - California Scholarship Online
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Gender in Amazonia and Melanesia: An Exploration of the Comparative Method

Thomas Gregor and Donald Tuzin


One of the great riddles of cultural history is the remarkable parallel that exists between the peoples of Amazonia and those of Melanesia. Although the two regions are separated by half a world in distance and at least 40,000 years of history, their cultures nonetheless reveal striking similarities in the areas of sex and gender. In both Amazonia and Melanesia, male–female differences infuse social organization and self-conception. They are the core of religion, symbolism, and cosmology, and they permeate ideas about body imagery, procreation, growth, men's cults, and rituals of initiation. T ... More

Keywords: cultural history, Amazonia, Melanesia, male–female differences, social organization, self-conception, religion, symbolism, cosmology, body imagery

Bibliographic Information

Print publication date: 2001 Print ISBN-13: 9780520228511
Published to California Scholarship Online: May 2012 DOI:10.1525/california/9780520228511.001.0001


Affiliations are at time of print publication.

Thomas Gregor, editor

Donald Tuzin, editor

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Fourteen Reflections on the Land of Melazonia

Thomas A. Gregor, and Donald Tuzin