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•The totem has to be a name that is emblematic •(Page 100)they are kin solely because they bare the same name *read up to page 157 (end of chapter 3) Sept. 23, 2013•Totemism both a religion containing the elementary forms of religious life as well as a form of kinship•Totem was the name of a basic unit of kin•Every member of the Totem shared this name- most often the name of an animal•It was forbidden for members of the clan to eat the flesh of the totem animal•However, certain ceremonial occasions where it was permitted and compulsory to eat the animal- every clan member had to do it•Totem was a name and an emblem—something which stands for something else•Durkheim likens it to what existed in Europe among the aristocracy•Every aristocracy had an emblem or coat of arms•This emblem, this visible sign of the totem (form of an animal), was imprinted on things which belonged to individual clan members and to the clan as a whole•Men do not just place the emblem on things- they also wear it ex. Tattoos•Tattoo is an emblem which represents membership of the group- a kind of identification•Durkheim suggests that the emblem, whether imprinted on things or people, is in fact more sacred than the individual himself/herself•The emblem of the clan is the most sacred-more sacred than the animal•Emblems used during religious ceremonies•Things are classified by sacred or profane by reference to the totem•Cheringas objects of wood and stone- the totemic mark confers sacredness on them•The sacredness stems from one cause- it is a material representation of the clan•Something material stands for something social•Members of other totems can kill and eat the flesh of another’s totem’s animal•Makes sense you can’t eat the animal since it is your kin•Also a prohibition against killing the totem animal as well
•The images of the totemic being are more sacred than the totemic being itself•The animal as a material things becomes the bearer of the collective identity•Durkheim is inching toward the idea that the sacred somehow has something to do with collectivity and the group itself•The human being has a two-fold/ double nature•The sacredness of the clan member relates to the fact that he/she shares something with that particular clan animal•They are both an individual and an animal•Human blood as something both material and also participating in that which is sacred- almost no religious rite in these totemic societies that does not involve human blood•Durkheim disagrees with those who suggest what we have in these totemic societies is animal worship- zoolatry•The animal seems to occupy a lightly higher rank among sacred things•The totem is sometimes called the father or grandfather of the men in the clan- dependency but more so equality•Totemic animal is called the friend or elder brother of its human kin•Man sees the animal of the totemic as associates whose help he believes he can call on•