Religion Reaction Essay: “Body Ritual Among The Nacirmea”
The reaction essay is based upon Horace Miner’s article “Body Ritual Among the Nacirema,” published in Wiley-Blackwell’s, in conjunction with the American Anthropological Association, journal American Anthropologist. The essay will consist of two sections: an article summary and a reaction discussion.
Horace Miner wrote the article “Body Ritual among the Nacirema”, in which he described and detailed the various body rituals practiced among the Nacirema culture. Horace starts the article by explaining that anthropologists encounter all types of cultural and ritualistic extremities, but the Nacirema body rituals are ...view middle of the document...
The Nacirema people consume and store the magic potions within the shrine room, and consume the potions for the prevention of body ailments and to help cure sickness. The article then describes the community temple believed to help the extremely sick, which an individual can only enter after offering a rich gift to the custodian. Once inside of the temple, an individual undergoes a series of painful and humiliating rituals believed to cure human sickness and possession. According to the article, if an individual survives the temple ritual, he or she then must offer another great gift before return home. Finally, the article detail taboo associations with sex, pregnancy, and human excrement, and describes how individuals hide these taboos from the community.
The article “Body Ritual among the Nacirema” by Horace Miner easily sparks strong opinions among the readers. Miner invokes a sense of puzzlement in his reader by his description of the Nacirema practices concerning the human body.
The description provided from Miner’s article on the views of the Nacirema people concerning pregnancy is unusual, and the description raised a serious question in my opinion while reading the article. My reaction to the privacy and sense of shame regarding pregnancy within the Nacirema population is a sense of bewilderment. Pregnancy is usually celebrated because pregnancy and babies are the reason a culture thrives and continues it’s legacy, so for the Nacirema people to hide pregnancy creates an idea that the Nacirema people aren’t proud of their culture and people. If the Nacirema people feel shame regarding the...