McQuirtS_LASA2.pptx - IDENTITY FORMATION Stephanie McQuirt...

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IDENTITY FORMATION Stephanie McQuirt
OKIEK RITES OF PASSAGE In Kenya, a tribe called Okiek has a rite of passage ceremony for boys and girls when they are between 14 and 16 years of age (Delaney, 1995, para. 2). The children undergo circumcision. They spend 1-6 months in seclusion away from opposite sex adults. They paint themselves in the likeness of wild creatures. They receive secret knowledge from same-sex adults. They produce a roar similar to a mythical creature using a special horn.
There is an initiation for girls that is performed by the Tukuna people who live in the Amazon (Delaney, 1995, para. 4). When the girls begin menstruation for the first time, they go into seclusion for 1-3 months. During this time, the girl is believed to be in the underworld and in danger from demons. Towards the end of seclusion, visitors come and wear masks to become incarnations of the demons. For two days, the girl stays in seclusion wearing paint that is meant for protection. She comes out of seclusion on the third day and spends the day dancing with her family. The initiation is completed when the girl receives a fire brand from a shaman that she throws at the demons to break their power over her. TUKUNA RITES OF PASSAGE
COMPARISON TO AMERICAN RITES OF PASSAGE While the Okiek and Tukuna tribes rites of passage involve physical seclusion, American rites of passage do not. American rites of passage include, but are not limited to, graduation from high school, getting a drivers license, going through puberty, and getting a job. According to Delaney (1995), all rites of passage include specific elements. She names these elements as separation from society, instruction from elders, a transition (this being the transition to adulthood), and acknowledgement of the changed status by society (Delaney, 1995, para. 1). These elements

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