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Title: Since I am a woman, I will chastise my relatives: gender, reported speech, and the (re)production of social relations in Warao ritual wailing
Authors: Briggs, Charles L. 1953-
Date: 1992
Source: American Ethnologist 19(2):337-361
Abstract: Ritual wailing performed by Warao women at funerals in eastern Venezuela provides a paradigmatic case of the inversion of established relationships between gender and discourse. In their laments, women, excluded from principal positions in nearly all other public speech events, appropriate and rework words initially used in settings where only men are accorded a voice. I argue that in so doing, they question the dominant means of social (re)production and, in effect, act to constrain the authority of male shamans and political leaders. Research on language and gender, discourse and affect, and the poetics of gender suggests a framework for exploring the social and political significance of wailing.
Format: article
Online: View Article
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