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Access to Origins: Affines, Ancestors, and Aristocrats

Helms, Mary W.

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ISBN 10: 0292731191 / ISBN 13: 9780292731196
Published by Univ of Texas Pr, Austin, Texas, U.S.A., 1998
Condition: Good Hardcover
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About this Item

Size: 8vo - over 7¾" - 9¾" tall. Light highlighting throughout text and notes on front free endpage. Boards and jacket bumped at corners and spine ends. Quantity Available: 1. ISBN: 0292731191. Pictures of this item not already displayed here available upon request. Inventory No: 020749. International shipping may require additional postage. Please inquire. Bookseller Inventory # 020749

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Bibliographic Details

Title: Access to Origins: Affines, Ancestors, and ...

Publisher: Univ of Texas Pr, Austin, Texas, U.S.A.

Publication Date: 1998

Binding: Hardcover

Book Condition:Good

Dust Jacket Condition: Very Good

About this title

Synopsis:

In many non-industrial, non-Western societies, power and prestige are closely linked to the extent of an individual's or group's perceived connection to the supernatural realm, which also explains and validates tangible activities such as economic success, victories in war, or control over lucrative trade. Affines (in-laws), ancestors, and aristocrats, in particular, are connected to the realm of creative cosmological origins (i.e., to Genesis), which accords them distinctive, supernatural powers and gives them a natural and legitimate right to worldly authority.

This is the hypothesis that Mary W. Helms pursues in this broadly cross-cultural study of aristocracy in chiefly societies. She begins with basic ideas about the dead, ancestors, affines, and concepts of cosmological origins. This leads her to a discussion of cosmologically defined hierarchies, the qualities that characterize aristocracy, and the political and ideological roles of aristocrats as wife-givers and wife-takers (that is, as in-laws). She concludes by considering various models that explain how societies may develop or define aristocracies.

About the Author:

Mary W. Helms is Professor of Anthropology at the University of North Carolina at Greensboro.

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