Gypsy World: The Silence of the Living and the Voices of the Dead / Edition 2

Gypsy World: The Silence of the Living and the Voices of the Dead / Edition 2

ISBN-10:
0226899292
ISBN-13:
9780226899299
Pub. Date:
06/28/2003
Publisher:
University of Chicago Press
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Overview

Gypsy World: The Silence of the Living and the Voices of the Dead / Edition 2

For many of us, one of the most important ways of coping with the death of a close relative is talking about them, telling all who will listen what they meant to us. Yet the Gypsies of central France, the Manuš, not only do not speak of their dead, they burn or discard the deceased's belongings, refrain from eating the dead person's favorite foods, and avoid camping in the place where they died.

In Gypsy World, Patrick Williams argues that these customs are at the center of how Manuš see the world and their place in it. The Manuš inhabit a world created by the "Gadzos" (non-Gypsies), who frequently limit or even prohibit Manuš movements within it. To claim this world for themselves, the Manuš employ a principle of cosmological subtraction: just as the dead seem to be absent from Manuš society, argues Williams, so too do the Manuš absent themselves from Gadzo society—and in so doing they assert and preserve their own separate culture and identity.

Anyone interested in Gypsies, death rituals, or the formation of culture will enjoy this fascinating and sensitive ethnography.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780226899299
Publisher: University of Chicago Press
Publication date: 06/28/2003
Edition description: 1
Pages: 115
Product dimensions: 5.50(w) x 8.50(h) x 0.30(d)

Table of Contents

List of Photographs

Translator's Acknowledgments

1 Pre-text

2 Mare Mule: The Dead among the Living

3 Civilizing the World

4 The Basket Makers Have Become Scrap-Iron Dealers

5 Commmentary

Notes

References

Index

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