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This text is a case study of one people, the Canela, which traces changes through time, a group uniquely held together by social and sexual bonds, and reveals the ethnographer's fieldwork practices. The authors present much of the material through short narratives and examples and Native points of view are expressed through their diaries. The reader is introduced to the Canela with an account of one of the author's arrivals in the tribe. This is followed by a brief history of the Canela that clarifies how the network of the kinship system holds the society together, and how the unusual sex practices create satisfying bonds among the people. The case study also shows how the practice of rituals affirms the group way of life for the individual. Many contemporary influences have caused the gradual demise of the Canela way of life. The case study concludes with an epilogue on the Canela's future adaptation to Brazilian life.
Preface: How I Chose Anthropology and the Canela for my Life's Work.
Introduction to the Second Edition.
1. A First Visit to the Canela.
2. The Historical Context.
3. The Web of Kinship.
4. Affirmation through Ritual.
5. The Extramarital Sex System.
Epilogue: The Future of the Canela.
Appendix A: Mythology.
Appendix B: Orthography.
Appendix C: Comparison of Topics Across Various Media.