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by Robert I. Levy

ePub Tahitians: Mind and Experience in the Society Islands download
Author:
Robert I. Levy
ISBN13:
978-0226476117
ISBN:
0226476111
Language:
Publisher:
University of Chicago Press (September 1988)
Subcategory:
Anthropology
ePub file:
1806 kb
Fb2 file:
1278 kb
Other formats:
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Rating:
4.2
Votes:
310

Series: Mind and Experience in the Society Islands. Paperback: 576 pages

Series: Mind and Experience in the Society Islands. Paperback: 576 pages. Robert I. Levy's classic work on Tahitians is an unusual meeting point between traditional ethnographies (broad cultural surveys with everything from gardening charms to system of government) and the more recent wave of psychological ethnographies (sometimes so specific that they discuss little but folk beliefs about the self, or semantic analysis of emotion terms).

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Levy, Robert I. (1973) Tahitians: mind and experience in the Society Islands. Levy, Robert I. and Douglas Hollan. Person-Centered Interviewing and Observation in Anthropology. Chicago: University of Chicago Press. 1984. Emotion, knowing, and culture. pp. 214–237 in Culture Theory: essays on mind, self, and emotion. Cambridge, UK: Cambridge University Press. 1990. Mesocosm: the organization of a Hindu Newar city in Nepal. Walnut Creek, CA: Altamira Press.

Tahitians is an ethnography focused on private but culturally organized behavior resulting in a wealth of material for the understanding of the interaction among historical, cultural, and personal spheres. This is a unique addition to anthropological literature. This seminal work in several ed anthropology, comparative psychology, and social history-documents the inner life of the Tahitians with sensitivity and insight.

Tahitians" is an ethnography focused on private but culturally organized behavior resulting in a wealth of material for the understanding of the interaction among historical, cultural, and personal spheres. Tahitians: Mind and Experience in the Society Islands. oceedings{Levy1973TahitiansMA, title {Tahitians: Mind and Experience in the Society Islands}, author {Robert I. Levy}, year {1973} }. Levy.

Robert I. Levy described that society in his 1973 book Tahitians: Mind and Experience in the Society Islands. He described many aspects of Tahitian peacefulness, such as the roles that the various Christian churches play in the rural culture of the islands. A rural Tahitian church on Moorea (Photo by RDPixelShop on Flickr, Creative Commons license). Levy llustrated by Pierre Heyman. At the same time Levy reveals the ways in which private and public worlds interact. Tahitians is an ethnography focused on private but culturally organized behavior resulting in a wealth of material for the understanding of the interaction among historical, cultural, and personal spheres.

Tahitians: Mind and Experience in the Society Islands. might not be much inc lined to do so if onl y i t ~ere not for the crucial words "mind and experience" in the subtitle. 1I1 Justra ted by Pierre Heyman. Chicago & London: University of Chicago. For in the end it must be said somehow that Tahitians does not real1y make the kind of contextual analysis of exotic categories which these words encourage the reader to look for. A large proportion ~f the book presents descriptions of customs in very much the fashion of Both Sides of Duka Passage. Levy (b 1924, d. 29 August, 2003, Asolo, Veneto, Italy) was an American psychiatrist and anthropologist known for his fieldwork in. . 29 August, 2003, Asolo, Veneto, Italy) was an American psychiatrist and anthropologist known for his fieldwork in Tahiti and Nepal and on the cross-cultural study of emotions. Though he did not receive a formal degree in anthropology, he spent most of his adult life conducting anthropological fieldwork or teaching in departments of anthropology.

In 1973 Robert found archival records that indicate that in pre- Levy’s The Tahitians: Mind and Experience in the Christian Samoa commoner families may have Society . Tahitians: Mind and Experience in Schoeffel, Penelope. Sexual Morality in Samoa the Society Islands.

In 1973 Robert found archival records that indicate that in pre- Levy’s The Tahitians: Mind and Experience in the Christian Samoa commoner families may have Society Islands reinforced these images of South made a gift of their daughters’ virginity to chiefs Sea Islanders as sexually well functioning but and that afterward such girls might honorably emotionally low-keyed individuals. Chicago, IL: University of Chicago and Its Historical Transformations. In Sexualities in Press.

Book by Levy, Robert I.
  • World War II had relatively little influence on the culture of Tahiti and the surrounding Society Islands of the South Pacific, unlike its effect on much of Melanesia and Micronesia, further west and north. Rather, major changes began in the early 1960s, when France decided to conduct nuclear tests in the area. This decision, with massive transfers of money, technology, and personnel, had "an explosive effect" on Tahitian culture. Levy conducted the research for this book just as the new period was opening, from 1961 to 1964. Thus, we can probably say that no matter how good it is, TAHITIANS is now a historical document. Nevertheless it is an excellent psycho-portrait of a people at a certain point in history, a portrait that utilizes earlier histories and descriptions from the moment of European contact in 1767.
    TAHITIANS is a work of psychological anthropology, one of the best I have ever seen. It is a work about Tahitian culture and personality formation that delves into a myriad aspects of life from childbirth, the widespread adoption common in all Polynesian societies, homosexuality, and leadership qualities to religion, moral behavior, and dreams. Language plays a big part in the description---over 200 Tahitian words are used, sometimes frequently, in order to describe relationships and feelings more exactly. Many fascinating insights on Tahitian culture in general can be gleaned from his numerous passages on language. Levy's writing is clear and simple throughout, though a few passages were a little too `field-specific' to psychology for a layman like myself. At over five hundred pages, the book is nothing if not comprehensive, but Levy did sacrifice analysis for the sake of presenting all his data. The analysis appears throughout, but sometimes does not have a clear direction. The author maintains a modest tone, often retiring from a discussion inconclusively. For example, he tackles older anthropological concerns about the difference between the `content' and `process' of thought which led previous generations of scholars to write of the "primitive mind". While his answers are good, and strictly in line with what he found in his own work, they do not answer those concerns. [Perhaps impossible, perhaps conducive to racist thinking in a racism-plagued world.] Another section on `guilt cultures' vs. `shame cultures' is also rather inconclusive. It might have been more useful to sidestep these old, oft-debated issues [now half a century or more out of date] to concentrate on his subjects, the villagers of Huahine island and the urban dwellers in a section of Papeete, the formerly sleepy capital of Tahiti. The lack of a strong summary is the weakest point about TAHITIANS; such an amazingly vivid description just fizzles out.
    I have reviewed another book in this field for amazon.com---"All the Mothers are One" by Stanley Kurtz about India. Kurtz' book is entirely based on analysis of other writers' theories and building some new ones. He did no field work himself. Levy's book, written entirely on extensive field work and interviews, is just the opposite, yet both are extremely useful works for students wishing to delve further into psychological studies of other cultures. Teachers looking for good books to use in courses touching on psychological anthropology or Pacific Studies have come to the right place. TAHITIANS is an overlooked classic that deserves to be read by a much wider audience than has been the case.

  • Robert I. Levy's classic work on Tahitians is an unusual meeting point between traditional ethnographies (broad cultural surveys with everything from gardening charms to system of government) and the more recent wave of psychological ethnographies (sometimes so specific that they discuss little but folk beliefs about the self, or semantic analysis of emotion terms). The combination is refreshing: a trained psychoanalyst and psychiatrist conducts more than two years of fieldwork in a Tahitian village, and gives us not only his insights, but also his data, his process of interpretation, and the sociocultural context in which he worked. Levy's Tahiti was also in a continuing process of Westernization and modernization. Salient contrasts for the islanders were "traditional" versus "demi-European" Tahitians, and both again versus the French government and Chinese merchants. The "traditional" Tahitian culture itself, however, came from the interaction of an older Tahitian culture with Protestant missionaries in the 19th century. Levy draws on the historical and comparative records to present a sympathetic picture of a small society caught in complicated times. Finally, Levy is simply a good writer, and appears to be a good fieldworker as well. He introduces us to nine Tahitians, not all of whom are nice or happy. Through them (in one of the early examples of person-centered anthropology), we glimpse something of what it means to be Tahitian. Levy's presentation is neither romantic nor sentimental, but in reading this book, one understands why the South Seas, and Tahiti in particular, have occupied such a large place in the European imagination. It's a pity there aren't more books like this in the anthropological canon.