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Durham e-Theses
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Healing the Individual, Healing the Community
Shamanic Rituals and Funerals of the Wana People of Morowali

SCALICI, GIORGIO (2019) Healing the Individual, Healing the Community
Shamanic Rituals and Funerals of the Wana People of Morowali.
Doctoral thesis, Durham University.

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This thesis offers an intricate analysis of three Wana rituals developed over a period of five years’ research reflection, focusing in depth on two of the rituals, the momago (healing ceremony) and kayori (funeral). It posits that Wana shamanism provides opportunities for creating ‘a sense of community’ (kasintuwu) at the same time that it can address individual ills, by bringing people together on ritual occasions. This idea is developed into a concept of 'density', with rituals cast as 'rites of densification' that temporarily recreate the primordial unity of the community. These concepts are then related to a conceptualisation of space-time in which the Wana remain at the origin and centre of the world, while those who have been dispersed (including to the West) have thrived at the physical periphery. Scalici also describes a concept of power in which local and visible people are powerless while those who have dispersed and are invisible, including spirits, are more powerful: this also maps on to a gender division in which women remain at home while men, and especially shamans, wander. Music is interpreted as being essential to the rituals because of its ability to connect people to the invisible realm and enable the wandering of shamans, as well as to control emotions.

Item Type:Thesis (Doctoral)
Award:Doctor of Philosophy
Keywords:Shamanism, Indigenous religions, Death, Community, Music, Mythology
Faculty and Department:Faculty of Arts and Humanities > Theology and Religion, Department of
Thesis Date:2019
Copyright:Copyright of this thesis is held by the author
Deposited On:27 Aug 2019 13:06

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