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Food for pregnancy. Procreation, marriage and images of gender among the Vezo of western Madagascar

Astuti, Rita (1993) Food for pregnancy. Procreation, marriage and images of gender among the Vezo of western Madagascar. Social Anthropology, 1 (3). pp. 277-290. ISSN 1469-8676

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This article discusses the Vezo, a group of fishing people who live on the western coast of Madagascar, and their fear that men may become pregnant through a special act of feeding. Through analysis of Vezo kinship, of Vezo ideas about procreation, and of how the fear of male pregnancy is elaborated and eventually overcome through the marriage ritual, two co-existing images emerge: the image of ungenderedness, which stresses people's sameness and ignores gender differences, and the image of genderedness, in which gender is a difference of great significance. The two images are shown to be mutually constituted, rather than contradictory. It is argued in the conclusion that to take difference as the focus of gender analysis is misleading if one does not at the same time also include undifferentiation.

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Divisions: Anthropology
Subjects: H Social Sciences > HT Communities. Classes. Races
H Social Sciences > HQ The family. Marriage. Woman
G Geography. Anthropology. Recreation > GN Anthropology
Date Deposited: 24 Jun 2007
Last Modified: 20 Nov 2019 06:21

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