The Gebusi Reaction Paper

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Brianda Sanchez
ASB 102 M,W 9:00-9:50; F 10;30-11;20
November 7, 2012

The Gebusi Reaction Paper

Overview and Discussion

Bruce Knauft’s main goal for The Gebusi was to depict the lives of the Gebusi. In the introduction he stated that his goal is “to let the Gebusi as people come alive to the reader, to portray their past and their present”. He also wanted to document the transition from a traditional culture to a more modern one during his visits. The first half of the book describes the traditional culture of Gebusi life, while the other half of the book describes the transition to modern culture. He documented the effects brought on to the Gebusi way of life by technological, economic, political, and religious changes.

Knauft depicts the Gebusi through an unbiased perspective. He recounts his experiences with the Gebusi as he began to build relationships with them. He categorized certain aspects of their culture together so that readers could easily glide through the concepts. I felt that he did a great job describing the different topics without leaving anything out. His book was really easy to follow.

Gebusi Gender Roles and Sexual Practices

Knauft’s documentation on Gebusi gender roles and sexuality in Part One of The Gebusi can be listed into four categories, gender separation, cross-sex relationships, violence and homosexuality.
Gender separation can easily be seen through Knauft’s observations. Two main social gatherings for the Gebusi are spirit séances and the good company of kogwayay, however Gebusi women do not participate in these séances or kogwayay. They are excluded and are only exposed to the happenings going on through the shouting and chanting of the men. These are male dominated gatherings. For these gatherings, women provide for most of it by cooking food but they are not allowed to participate.

Cross sexual relationships in the Gebusi differ from Western societies view through a process called preferential...
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