This unusual and richly-illustrated book is the story of the relationship between the Nage people of eastern Indonesia and the birds alongside which they co-exist. Based on fieldwork carried out over a period of some fifteen years, it aims for a total view of how a human community interacts with another zoological class, giving birds a chosen place in human ideas and social practice. As well as a fascinating ornithological study of Indonesian bird life, Nage Birds offers a much-needed critique of current theoretical argument on how non-Western societies categorize and evaluate different species and modes of being.
Table of Contents
Chapter 1: Introduction Chapter 2: Ethno-ornithological Classification: Generic Categories and Ethno-taxonomy Chapter 3: Intermediate Categories, Binary Associations, and Nomenclature Chapter 4: Things That Go Po In The Night: Ethnotaxonomy and Symbolic Classification Chapter 5: Spiritual Birds Chapter 6: Birds as Omens and Taboo Chapter 7: Hibernating Swallows, Kite Stones, and the Legless Nightjar: Some Curiosities of Nage Bird Knowledge Chapter 8: Birds in Myth and Metaphor Chapter 9: The Story of Tupa Lelu, or How Birds of Prey Became Chicken Thieves Chapter 10: Comparisons and Conclusions