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Original Essays | June 20, 2014

Lisa Howorth: IMG So Many Books, So Many Writers



I'm not a bookseller, but I'm married to one, and Square Books is a family. And we all know about families and how hard it is to disassociate... Continue »

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JaneBP has commented on (1) product.

Don't Sleep, There Are Snakes: Life and Language in the Amazonian Jungle by Daniel L. Everett
Don't Sleep, There Are Snakes: Life and Language in the Amazonian Jungle

JaneBP, March 31, 2010

Any reader should be aware that this is a work of linguistics, not primarily anthropology. I thought I would enjoy it more because I enjoy anthropology, but the author's original purpose in studying the language was to translate the Bible and thus convert the people he was studying. This is not an anthropological viewpoint.

The most interesting things in terms of anthropology were the author's references to his father's "cowboy culture" and how it influenced his own agressive/possessive behavior. I presume it is this cowboy culture that allowed him to make a parenthetical reference to a gang rape of a young woman in the section where he was describing how happy the Piraha people are. No further information of the rape is given, nor any reference to the subsequent happiness (or even the identity) of the raped woman.

I think you would have to get REALLY excited about linguistics to think that this is a wonderful book.
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