cover of book

Made from Bone: Trickster Myths, Music, and History from the Amazon
by Jonathan D. Hill
University of Illinois Press, 2008
Cloth: 978-0-252-03373-5 | Paper: 978-0-252-07570-4 | eISBN: 978-0-252-09151-3
Library of Congress Classification F2270.2.C87H56 2009
Dewey Decimal Classification 398.20899839


Made-from-Bone is the first work to provide a complete set of English translations of narratives about the mythic past and its transformations from the indigenous Arawak-speaking people of South America. Among the Arawak-speaking Wakuénai of southernmost Venezuela, storytellers refer to these narratives as "words from the primordial times," and they are set in an unfinished space-time before there were any clear distinctions between humans and animals, men and women, day and night, old and young, and powerful and powerless. The central character throughout these primordial times and the ensuing developments that open up the world of distinct peoples, species, and places is a trickster-creator, Made-from-Bone, who survives a prolonged series of life-threatening attacks and ultimately defeats all his adversaries. 

Carefully recorded and transcribed by Jonathan D. Hill, these narratives offer scholars of South America and other areas the only ethnographically generated cosmogony of contemporary or ancient native peoples of South America. Hill includes translations of key mythic narratives along with interpretive and ethnographic discussion that expands on the myths surrounding this fascinating and enigmatic character with broad appeal throughout various folkloric traditions.

See other books on: Amazon | Bone | Made | Songs and music | Venezuela
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