From: Quetzil Castaneda <Quetzil@xxxxxx>
Date: Thu, 09 May 1996 16:39:33 -0500 (CDT)
At 10:49 AM 5/9/96 +0100, you wrote:
>'''London''' contains the word London and two sets of inverted commas;
>''London'' contains the word London and one set of inverted commas;
>'London' contains the word London; and London contains about 6 million
and the London in your sentence is a word., which refers to a legally
constituted entity (a practice forged in history through various debates,
struggles, investment of wealth, construction...)
>> Ask the Pathan, the !Kung, the ancient greeks, the Maya, the whomever that
>> is not western -- take a poll among the New Guineans, for example! -- and
>> see if they also distinguish between the discursive and the biological?
>Well, the !Kung for example call anyone with the same name as their
>mother 'mother', and call her brothers 'uncles' and enter the same joking
>or avoidance relations with them as they would with their biological
>mother. This doesn't stop them knowing who gave birth to them.
thank you. you provided nice ethnographic data to see the point i was if not
making at least trying to allude: they know who gave birth to themselves,
but its not a biological issue is it! its a question of kinship.
> I imagine that few use the discourse of biology (or chromosomes, christian
>> ethics of normal sex, or...) to talk about what you (and many others from a
>> specific sociohistorical cultural frame) TALK about as "biology" as a
>> reality outside and beyond/separate from these other nonbiological
>I doubt if many of them have access to any of these discourses. However,
>I am sure that the !Kung talk about giving birth, having sexual
>relations, trial marriages, hunting animals etc. in quite different ways
>from the way they talk about talking. I would imagine very few people
>believe that only discourse exists.