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Citation Information

Type Thesis or Dissertation
Title Hard custom, hard dance: Social organisation,(un) differentiation and notions of power in a Tabiteuean community, Southern Kiribati
Author(s)
Publication (Day/Month/Year) 2010
URL https://helda.helsinki.fi/bitstream/handle/10138/23357/hardcustom.pdf?..
Abstract
This work analyses social organisation on the island of Tabiteuea in the Micronesian state of Kiribati, examining the intertwining of hierarchical and egalitarian traits, meanwhile bringing a new perspective to scholarly discussions of social differentiation by introducing the concept of 'undifferentiation' to describe non- hierarchical social forms and practices. Particular attention is paid to local ideas concerning symbolic power, abstractly understood as the potency for social reproduction, but also examined in one of its forms; authority understood as the right to speak. The workings of social differentiation and undifferentiation in the village are specifically studied in two contexts connected by local notions of power: the meetinghouse institution (te maneaba) and traditional dancing (te mwaie).

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