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Counterparts: Co-presence and ritual intersubjectivity

Authors
Journal
Language & Communication
0271-5309
Publisher
Elsevier
Volume
33
Issue
3
Identifiers
DOI: 10.1016/j.langcom.2013.07.001
Keywords
  • Phenomenology
  • Ritual Practice
  • Participation Frames
  • Shamanism
  • Maya

Abstract

Abstract Taking Schutz’s analysis of interaction relations as a point of departure, this paper examines intersubjectivity through the lens of shamanic divination and exorcism in Yucatec Maya. Shamanic practice alters and in some ways contradicts the principles of reciprocity, mutuality and congruence that lie at the heart of intersubjectivity as Schutz defined it. The co-engagement of shaman with patient is mediated by ritual objects on the altar, the intercorporeal space of performance and legions of spirits who though invisible are nonetheless made present. Intersubjectivity is effectively dismantled and reorganized, not as the universal foundation of co-engagement, but its occasional by-product.

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