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Metamorphosis of heads



Metamorphosis of heads: Textual Struggles, Education and Land in the Andes.
(Rincón de las cabezas, English version)

Metamorphosis of heads  



Denise Y. Arnold with Juan de Dios Yapita.




University of Pittsburgh Press.




330 pp. (Contents, 33 figs., bibliography)





  24 x 16 cm.    





Palabras claves:


Indians of South America-Education-Bolivia, Aymara Indians-Education, Indians of South America-Andes Region-Languages-Writing, Quipu, Inca textile fabrics, Indian literature-Criticism, Textual, Transmission of texts-Andes Region, Literacy-Bolivia, Peru-HistoryConquest, Spain-Colonies-America-Administration, Yapita, Juan de Dios, Title, Illuminations (Pittsburgh, Pa.).

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Since the days of the Spanish Conquest, the indigenous populations of Andean Bolivia have struggled to preserve their textile-based writings. This struggle continues today, both in schools and within the larger culture. The Metamorphosis of Heads explores the history and cultural significance of Andean textile writings--weavings and kipus (knotted cords), and their extreme contrasts in form and production from European alphabet-based texts. Denise Arnold examines the subjugation of native texts in favor of European ones through the imposition of homogenized curricula by the Educational Reform Law. As Arnold reveals, this struggle over language and education directly correlates to long-standing conflicts for land ownership and power in the region, since the majority of the more affluent urban population is Spanish speaking, while indigenous languages are spoken primarily among the rural poor. The Metamorphosis of Heads acknowledges the vital importance of contemporary efforts to maintain Andean history and cultural heritage in schools, and shows how indigenous Andean populations have incorporated elements of Western textual practices into their own textual activities. Based on extensive fieldwork over two decades, and historical, anthropological, and ethnographic research, Denise Arnold assembles an original and richly diverse interdisciplinary study. The textual theory she proposes has wider ramifications for studies of Latin America in general, while recognizing the specifically regional practices of indigenous struggles in the face of nation building and economic globalization.

   Comments on the book / Comentarios sobre el libro

“This exceptional book offers the first full-length, critical study of Andean textual theory. Essential reading for those seeking to understand indigenous histories and cultures in the midst of the process of globalization.”
     Elizabeth Monasterios, University of Pittsburgh
“Este libro excepcional ofrece el primer estudio detallado y crítico de la teoría textual andina. Es lectura esencial para aquellos quienes buscar entender las historias y culturas indígenas en el meollo del proceso de la globalización.”
     Elizabeth Monasterios, University of Pittsburgh
This is an unparalleled ethnography in the detail with which it paints a coherent system of thought articulated through the textual production of stories, weaving, knots, schooling and many other social practices.
     JLAS, Andrew Canessa, University of Essex
Ésta es una etnografía sin paralelo en el detalle con que pinta el sistema coherente de pensamiento articulado mediante la producción textual de cuentos, el textil, los nudos, la escolarización y muchas otras prácticas sociales.
     JLAS, Andrew Canessa, University of Essex

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