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On logophagy and truth: interpretation through incorporation among Peruvian Urarina

Walker, Harry ORCID: 0000-0001-9879-4045 (2018) On logophagy and truth: interpretation through incorporation among Peruvian Urarina. Language and Communication, 63. pp. 15-22. ISSN 0271-5309

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Identification Number: 10.1016/j.langcom.2018.03.003


This paper develops an Amazonian critique of Western theories of interpretation as grounded in correspondence between a proposition and a state of affairs, and of truth as correspondence between mind and reality. For the Peruvian Urarina, language has materiality and force and implies a non-arbitrary relationship between signifier and signified, and is moreover based in a very different mode of adequation of person to world: a process grounded in absorption rather than representation. The view that words are effectively consumed by others reaches its apogee in the baau genre of ritual discourse, in which a healer’s speech is literally digested by the patient as a core part of the healing process.

Item Type: Article
Official URL:
Additional Information: © 2018 Elsevier Ltd.
Divisions: Anthropology
Subjects: C Auxiliary Sciences of History > CB History of civilization
P Language and Literature > P Philology. Linguistics
Sets: Departments > Anthropology
Date Deposited: 18 Apr 2018 15:50
Last Modified: 20 Sep 2021 01:56
Projects: 715725
Funders: Horizon 2020

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