Inalienable Possessionstests anthropology’s traditional assumptions about kinship, Annette B. Weiner . Afterword: The Challenge of Inalienable Possessions. : Inalienable Possessions: The Paradox of Keeping-While Giving ( ): Annette B. Weiner: Books. In Inalienable possessions, Annette Weiner () focuses on the paradox of ‘ keeping-while-giving’ rather than the ‘norm of reciprocity’ as the.

Author: Akinosida Tasho
Country: Cameroon
Language: English (Spanish)
Genre: Environment
Published (Last): 24 July 2011
Pages: 203
PDF File Size: 19.62 Mb
ePub File Size: 15.76 Mb
ISBN: 470-5-76639-615-8
Downloads: 36726
Price: Free* [*Free Regsitration Required]
Uploader: Shakalar

About the Book Inalienable Possessions tests anthropology’s traditional assumptions about kinship, economics, power, and gender in an exciting challenge to accepted theories of reciprocity and marriage exchange.

Don’t have an account? In reality these pieces of “property” are sacra that possessilns family divests itself of only with great reluctance and sometimes never.

He states that these objects are “durable wealth [that] is collective property that is continually in circulation among persons who have temporary possession of it. The Forgotten Dimension Source: It is for this reason that women retain high prestige and authority despite the fame of male Kula exchange players.

In possessoons, gift-giving plays an important role in the cultural development of how social and business relations evolve in major economies such as in the case of the Chinese. Economists have often shunned the idea of pondering exactly why people want goods.

Inalienable Possessions by Annette B. Weiner – Paperback – University of California Press

The paradox of keeping-while-giving is a concept certain to influence future developments in ethnography and the theoretical study of gender and exchange. In this way, The Dreaming itself encompasses vast inalienable possessions that are authenticated by the very cosmology under which they are produced.


Marcel Mauss first described inalienable possessions in The Giftdiscussing potlatchesa kind of gift-giving feast held in communities of many indigenous peoples of the Pacific Northwest:. And lastly, in the hierarchical areas, Kula necklaces and bracelets are saved for external exchange only; stone axe blades are used internally.

TrobriandsMalinowskinorm of reciprocityprimitive social relations. University Press Scholarship Online.

Users without a subscription are not able to see the full content. Moreover, they acknowledge differences of identity of individuals or groups linked by various kinds of exchanges. Account Options Sign in. Property Property law by country.

In these cases, women are critical to the “cosmological authentication” of inalienable possessions. Focusing on Oceania societies from Polynesia to Papua New Guinea and including Australian Aborigine groups, Annette Weiner investigates the category of possessions that must not be given or, if they are circulated, must return finally to the giver.

The Paradox of Keeping-while-giving Annette B. Disciplines Anthropology Cultural Anthropology Asian.

Inalienable possessions

Barbara Mills praised her investigation of how “inalienable possessions are simultaneously used to construct and defeat hierarchy”, saying it “opens a boxful of new theoretical and methodological tools for understanding social inequality in past and present societies. Calling attention to their presence in Western history, Weiner points inalineable that her formulations are not limited to Oceania.

Weiner weuner out that the same gender relations of “sibling intimacy” affect the exchange of these inalienable objects. According to Barbara Mills, “Inalienable possessions are objects made to be kept not exchangedhave symbolic and economic power that cannot be transferred, and are often used to authenticate the ritual authority of corporate groups”. The Paradox of Keeping-While-Givingfocussing on a range of Oceanic societies from Polynesia to Papua New Guinea and testing existing theories of reciprocity and marriage exchange.


The chiefs have saved their Kula valuables for external trade, and external possessipns seek to trade with them before they lose their valuables to internal claims.

This is an original point of view that will have real effects possessipns the direction of future fieldwork and comparative analysis.

Hunting-gathering Pastoralism Nomadic pastoralism Shifting cultivation Moral economy Peasant economics. Print Save Cite Email Share. Inalienable Possessions tests anthropology’s traditional assumptions about kinship, economics, power, and gender in an exciting challenge to accepted theories of reciprocity and marriage exchange.

Men had to find women outside their kin groups to marry hence they “lost” their sisters in order to gain wives. Weiner demonstrates that not all gifts must be returned.

Inalienable Possessions: The Forgotten Dimension

Books Digital Products Journals. Thus, when they are transferred from one individual or group to another the objects reserve meaningful bonds associated with that of the giver and their lineage. These gifts are not like those given in regular gift possessions in the West on birthdays for example.

She further argues that inalienable possessions gain the “mana” spirit of their possessors, and so become associated with them. It is even incorrect to speak in these cases of transfer.

The Enigma of the Gift.