Performing Dreams: Discourses of Immortality Among the Xavante of Central Brazil

Front Cover
University of Texas Press, 1995 - Social Science - 290 pages
0 Reviews
"Over several centuries, the Xavante people of Central Brazil have maintained an invincible sense of identity and feeling of control over historical processes, despite repeated invasions by colonists and settlers, capitalist commercial ventures, and most recently, an enormous government-sponsored mechanized agricultural project. In this discourse-centered study, Laura Graham explores how the Xavante use the ritual performance of myths and dreams to maintain their culture despite these disruptive outside forces." "At the heart of the book is an extraordinary performance, in which an elder and community leader tells his dream of an encounter with the creators. Graham analyzes the various components of his performance - narrative, myth-telling, song, and dance - and considers the entire community's participation in the preparations, rehearsal, and public performance of the dream, including their adaptation to her presence and modern technologies." "From this analysis, Graham demonstrates how the practice of myth-telling is an essential element in cultural continuity and the creation of social memory. Through expressive performance, Xavante create a remarkable sense of agency in responding to historical events. The myth-teller also attains a kind of immortality. These findings will be of interest not only to students of South American cultures and linguistics but also to everyone intrigued by the role of myth and dreams in social life and social change."--BOOK JACKET.Title Summary field provided by Blackwell North America, Inc. All Rights Reserved

From inside the book

What people are saying - Write a review

We haven't found any reviews in the usual places.

Contents

PERFORMING DREAMS
1
DESCENDANTS OF THE FIRST CREATORS
19
XAVANTE LEADER CELESTINO EN ROUTE TO A FEDERAL
56
Copyright

8 other sections not shown

Other editions - View all

Common terms and phrases

References to this book

All Book Search results »

About the author (1995)

Graham is Associate Professor of Anthropology at the University of Iowa.

Bibliographic information