Reading Response Form Final-1.docx - READING RESPONSE YOUR...

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READING RESPONSEYOUR NAME: Elaina AbdallahARTICLE/CHAPTER TITLE: Body Ritual among the NaciremaAUTHOR: Horace MinerSUMMARY OR ABSTRACT (4 pts.)In the article, “Body Ritual among the Nacirema”, author Horace Miner writes of aunique tribe and their unusual customs. He describes them as “a North American group living in the territory between the Canadian Cree, the Yaqui and Tarahumare of Mexico, and the Carib and Arawak of the Antilles.” (Miner 1956, 503). The Nacirema sound like an indigenous tribe, however with careful reading, it becomesclear Miner is describing no other than Americans.According to Miner, the Nacirema culture revolves around their fundamental beliefthat the body is ugly, abhorrent even. In turn, they perform rituals and ceremonies with the goal of reforming and cleansing said dreadful body. The way Miner camouflages Americans by taking common routines and simply rephrasing it is fascinating. For instance, he states that within the houses of the Nacirema exists “shrines” devoted to the purpose of ridding the body of its ugliness. The focal pointwithin these shrines is a chest or box filled with “magical materials” and under exists a Water Temple with holy water pouring from it. The Nacirema believe that by conducting body rituals with these materials they are protected in some way. Allthese elaborate descriptions are simply talking about a bathroom with a medicine cabinet and a sink. Us Americans “unusual body rituals” are simply face-washing, teeth-brushing, shaving etc.

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