The Potlatch Papers: A Colonial Case History

封面
University of Chicago Press, 1997年12月8日 - 276 頁
Variously described as an exchange of gifts, a destruction of property, a system of banking, and a struggle for prestige, the potlatch is one of the founding concepts of anthropology. Some researchers even claim to have discovered traces of the potlatch in all the economies of the world.

However, as Christopher Bracken shows in this elegantly argued work, the potlatch was in fact invented by the nineteenth-century Canadian law that sought to destroy it. In addition to giving the world its own potlatch, the law also generated a random collection of "potlatch papers" dating from the 1860s to the 1930s. Bracken meticulously analyzes these documents—some canonical, like Franz Boas's ethnographies, others unpublished and little known—to catch a colonialist discourse in the act of constructing fictions about certain First Nations and then deploying those fictions against them. Rather than referring to objects that already exist, the "potlatch papers" instead gave themselves something to refer to; a mirror in which to observe not "the Indian," but "the European."
 

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內容

ACKNOWLEDGMENTS
SENDOFF
2
FOLDING
6
THREE ZONES
7
LIMIT
8
FOLD
12
GIFT
24
GIVING
34
THE TEXTUAL GIFT
97
DESTROYING PROPERTY
29
SACRIFICE
153
AT THE LIMIT FIRE
164
EATING
168
GIVING EATING
169
REMEMBERING DEATH
181
WHITE CANNIBALS
186

NAMELESS DISTRIBUTION
35
THE MARK OF EXPENDITURE
37
PATLACH
42
ENCOUNTERING LANGUAGE
51
WORDS AND THINGS
55
A DOUBLE INSCRIPTION
63
DOCTORING
70
CORRESPONDENCES
75
POTLACK
79
WHITE PURVEYORS
92
POET OF MEMORY
198
SUMMARY OFFENSES
205
EXACT INFORMATION
213
EPILOGUE
222
THE IMAGE AND THE GIFT
223
ANOTHER FOLD
225
NOTES
228
BIBLIOGRAPHY
246
INDEX
262
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