Presentation on theme: "Sociology 12 Rites of Passage. Defined Rite of passage: a ritual associated with a crisis or a change of status (as marriage, illness, or death) for."— Presentation transcript:
Sociology 12 Rites of Passage
Defined Rite of passage: a ritual associated with a crisis or a change of status (as marriage, illness, or death) for an individual. Three classic parts to rites of passage- 1) separation from normal life, 2) liminal (on threshold) state of between, 3) reincorporation into society with new status.
Birth and Childhood Christian- Name child after parent or grandparent. Blackfoot Indians of Alberta and Montana- hold child to sun - naming ceremony. (so radiance of sun will follow child through life). Ashkenazi Jew, !Kung (Namibia, Botswana) - never name after living relative.
Continued Mormons - baptize at age 8. Father gives blessing and enters name into register Palau, Micronesia, mothers are frequently isolated to protect mom and child from blood of birth (impurity, evil power) Orthodox Jewish boy, 3 first haircut (opsherenish). All hair is cut by parents and friends. Only sidelocks (peyot) are left. Signifies baby is changing to boy. Same in Bali among Hindus, Massai warriors (Kenya)
Initiation of Adolescence Lesse tribe, Zaire: girls reach menarche (menstrual phase), secluded with other girls Some Muslim countries (North Africa) - female circumcision is common (reduces infidelity) if the woman is not circumcised she is considered unfit to marry Jews: bar mitzvah - boys: aged 13. They are now accountable for their actions. They can now join the group for public prayer (minyan). They can now bless and read from the torah and Haftorah (prophetic), the bat mitzvah for girls.
Adolescence Continued Texas boy, Inuit boy: hunting is a necessary milestone on road to adulthood. The !Kung in Namibia cannot marry women till they have killed an animal. Vanuatu boys (Brazil) dive from 50 ft towers with elastic vines tied to foot just long enough to stop them from crashing (bunji jumping) The Surfista (young teen boys) in Rio ride on top of train ducking overhead rails and wires. They also have rituals of transvestism and humiliation.
Adolescence Continued In East Los Angeles Gang members beat up new recruits. Fraternities- Hazing rituals. Cosa Nostra (“The thing of ours”)- “Made Ceremonies” West Point Cadets escort girls at NYC debutante ball. Graduation shows that we value education: childhood is ending and adulthood is beginning.
Adolescence Continued Prom: biggest event for adolescents in the year. Break the rules as a last vestige of adolescence (in our society). People dance the night away, stay out all night, get close.
Marriage Burgundy, France. A married couple lead a procession through the town on foot. Japan - a fog machine is used in modern ceremonies. White dresses and veils. Marriage in western-style hotel. Only one third of marriages are still arranged. Couples now frequently have a get-acquainted period. Traditional wedding: woman in white makeup, kimono, elaborate hair and headdress, usually held at home over 2 or 3 days.
Marriage Continued Monrovia, Liberia. Couple surrounded by children and flowers (universal symbol for fertility in marriage) Ancient Rome and Greece: brides carried stems of wheat and wreaths of holly Japan: families of the bride and groom attend a prenuptial (premarriage) agreement
Adulthood Before modern medicine and growing life spans, children were considered the primary commitment in marriage. Our life expectancy is now so long that new transitional phases exist. What happens after the children grow up. The mid-life crises was not known in earlier cultures (nor is it prevalent in some modern cultures).
Adulthood Continued 1) retirement ? 2) menopause? 3) golden anniversaries?
Divorce Catholics make divorce hard, but have annulments. In Islam, a man need only say "I divorce you" three times. Most divorce rituals favour men.
Death and Remembrance Death ceremonies honour the dead and consecrate their passage to the next world. This forces people to realize they are not immortal. Guatemala - the dead are honoured at funeral meal. Friends and family gather. The coffin passes in front of the church where a last blessing is offered.
Death Continued England: body is sent in a Daimler Hearse, something unaffordable in the person's lifetime.
The End Thanks to: Joseph Campbell Wayne MacIntyre