A Comparative Study of Amerindian Social Organisation
Author: Peter Riviere
Publisher: Cambridge University Press
Category: Social Science
View: 4171The Amerindian peoples of Guiana, the geographical region of north-east South America, have long been recognized as forming a distinct variety of the tropical forest culture. In this book, Peter Rivière employs a comparative perspective to reveal that Guianan societies, generally characterized as socially fluid and amorphous, are in fact much more highly structured than they first appear, and he identifies certain common patterns of social organization that result from sets of individual choices and relationships. By contrasting the characteristics of Guianan society with those from elsewhere in Lowland South America, he constructs a spectrum of complexity of Amerindian social structure, and argues that the Guianan variant represents the logically simplest form of organization in the area.