Nacirema Essay

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  • Topic: Shrine, Worship, Temple
  • Pages : 3 (973 words )
  • Download(s) : 124
  • Published : November 10, 2008
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While in the process of doing a replication study of the Nacireman people, Anthropologist Lisa Hines stumbled upon an intriguing subculture within the tribe. The following are her observations;

It seems that the people of Nacirema, in addition to their personal shrines in the home, have many other shrines they visit for different rituals and purposes. Besides the Holy-mouth-man and the Medicine man, there seems to be other subcultures of these two specialists. Naciremans also frequently gather in great numbers to worship the lower levels of species that inhabit their continent as well as its surrounding waters. Ironically, the very creatures they worship now, used to be killed, captured, murdered and/or eaten in their recent history. The reason for this change of heart is unknown, one can only speculate that the Nacireman people hunted these creatures so fiercely that many species have become difficult to find, thus cutting into their food and labor supply. In an effort to appease the gods attached to each of these creatures, and an appeal to repopulate the species, they have erected temples to house one or a mated pair of each subspecies. There are two types of temples that house these creatures. One contains land animals of the continent as well as a variety from continents and islands throughout the planet, presumably from lands of early migration of the Naciremans. This land animal temple is called an Ooz. The other type of temple houses creatures from the waters surrounding the Nacireman continent and similar to the Ooz, from waters of other geographical locations as well. Studies are still being conducted in an attempt to find a correlation between the tribe and their choice of creatures to house in the temple. The only pattern found so far is; the less of an animal there is, the more prized and revered the creature is. This type of temple is called a Muirauqa. Each of these temples contained separate smaller temples, each devoted to it’s unique...
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