Use this URL to cite or link to this record in EThOS:
Title: Growing knowledge : exploring knowledge practices in Bolivip, Papua New Guinea
Author: Crook, T.
Awarding Body: University of Cambridge
Current Institution: University of Cambridge
Date of Award: 1997
Availability of Full Text:
Full text unavailable from EThOS.
Please contact the current institution’s library for further details.
Precisely because of their own elaborate knowledge practices, the Min of Papua New Guinea have proven uniquely problematic to the knowledge practice called social anthropology. Ethnographers have concluded that Min cultural processes are beyond both indigenous and anthropological explanation. This dissertation analyses knowing and growing by looking at explanatory practices of the Angkaiyakmin male cult in Bolivip village. I came to understand them as descriptions on a scale unfamiliar to conventional anthropological expectations. My research offers an alternative perspective on the Min, and an understanding of quite why the Min have proven so problematic to anthropological interpretation. In requiring an interlocutor to do the work of adding a half to complete their compositions of knowledge, the methodological basis of an interpretive anthropology is undermined. This assumption that any discursive encounter elicits another side in completion, is made evident in the responses of Angkaiyakmin to education, Catholicism and the development of the nearby Ok Tedi copper project. In Part One of the dissertation I discuss the practical and methodological problems also presented here, and inspect the implications of Fredrik Barth's paradigmatic analysis. I move on in Part Two to present my interests in knowing through the relational divisions of kinship and gender in both domestic and cult sociality. I consider the paths and means to knowing, the relational and discursive processes impinging upon knowing and revelation. Having formulated a methodology in response to these dislocated explanatory practices, I apply this in Part Three to inspect the Angkaiyakmin claim that their initiation rituals are like garden magic, and that their yolam ancestor spirit house replicates (kikseip) a planted taro garden. I attempt throughout to reflexively account not only for what the data might mean, but for why it appears to western anthropologists as it does.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available