By Marilyn McKillop Wells
In 1980, scientific anthropologist Marilyn McKillop Wells discovered herself embarking on an “improbable trip” while she was once invited to the realm to do fieldwork with the further problem of unveiling the “real” Garifuna. Upon her arrival at the island, Wells was once warmly embraced by means of an area kin, the Diegos, and got to work recording lifestyles occasions and indigenous views on polygyny, Afro-indigenous id, ancestor-worshiping faith, and extra. the outcome, as represented in Among the Garifuna, is a lovingly intimate, earthy human drama.
The kinfolk narrative is equipped chronologically. half I, “The outdated Ways,” contains vignettes that introduce the kin backstory with discussion as imagined by way of Wells in line with the relations historical past she used to be instructed. We meet the family members progenitors, Margaret and Cervantes Diego, in the course of their courtship, adventure Margaret’s ache as Cervantes takes a moment spouse, witness the loss of life of Cervantes and resulting mourning rituals, stick with the go back of Margaret and the kids to their prior domestic in British Honduras, and realize the emergence of the children’s personalities.
In half II, “Living There,” Wells maintains the tale while she arrives in Belize and meets the Diego young ones, together with the foremost protagonist, Tas. In Tas’s family Wells learns approximately meals and manners and watches relatives squabbles and reconciliations. In those mini-stories, Wells interweaves cultural info at the Garifuna individuals with first-person narrative and transcription in their phrases, assembling those into a charming slice of existence. half III, “The Ancestor Party,” takes the reader via a desirable postmortem ritual that's enacted to facilitate the adventure of the spirits of the venerated ancestors to the ideally suited supernatural.
Among the Garifuna contributes to the literary genres of narrative anthropology and feminist ethnography within the culture of Zora Neal Hurston and different girls writing tradition in a private approach. Wells’s portrait of this Garifuna relations may be of curiosity to anthropologists, Caribbeanists, Latin Americanists, scholars, and basic readers alike.
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Extra resources for Among the Garifuna: Family Tales and Ethnography from the Caribbean Coast
Among the Garifuna: Family Tales and Ethnography from the Caribbean Coast by Marilyn McKillop Wells