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Zack Hess
Period 1
Body Rituals of The Nacirema

* Miner is really talking about the American people when he says Nacerima. He talks about them as if they are some weird tribe of humans who are hard to understand and extremely complex in their behaviors and rituals. When Miner talks about the “shrine” and how rich people have more of them he is really talking about mirrors. “Incarcerated in such a body, man's only hope is to avert these characteristics through the use of ritual and ceremony. Every household has one or more shrines devoted to this purpose”. Americans use mirrors every morning to see what they are doing when they wash their face; brush their teeth and so on. He is trying to say that we are so caught up in our appearances, that if we didn’t do these rituals each day, we would lose everyone around us. It is true to this day that this observation is true; not to the extreme he is talking about, but many Americans believe that without their grooming each day, they would be ridiculed or made fun. In the paragraph 6, Miner talks about the medicine that we get from our doctors that we never get rid of after we are finished using them. “The charm is not disposed of after it has served its purpose, but is placed in the charmbox of the household shrine. As these magical materials are specific for certain ills, and the real or imagined maladies of the people are many, the charm-box is usually full to overflowing.” When talking about medicine, Miner is correct in his observation that most Americans never get rid of their medicine once they are done using it. We just leave it in our medicine cabinets until it is overflowing and has to be cleaned out. In addition to the tooth brushing, Miner talks about the visits to the dentist most Americans do once or twice a year. “…the people seek out a holy-mouth-man once or twice a year. These practitioners have an impressive set of paraphernalia, consisting of a variety of augers, awls,...
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