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49 internautes sur 50 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile
Excellent! The content MUST be considered!2 juin 1999
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Man Corn addresses, with scientific data, the possibility of cannibalism in the American Southwest. Defining how cannibalism can be recognized through taphonomic evidence, Turner systematically addresses 76 sites in the Southwest. Many of the sites hold up to these criteria for cannibalsim and many do not. Turner's detailed descriptions and excellent photographs make this book a must for anyone interested in REALLY addressing cannibalism in the Southwest. As with any good scientific study, Turner has made his argument with easy to understand criteria that can be scientifically challenged should someone choose, instead of dismissing the argument. Turner's explanation for cannibalism includes a Mesoamerican connection with evidence as well as ideas that do not have evidence to back them up. Turner has succeeded in opening up a subject that many do not want to address. Because of this, Turner will be accused of sensationalism. I suggest looking at the evidence in "Man Corn" before making any decision on the side of sensationalism or science. Turner puts before us a scientific study with no intent of sensationalism!
38 internautes sur 38 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile
Superbly written, strongly documented, provocative thesis9 janvier 2005
Robert St. James
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That violence and cannibalism were practiced during the Chaco/Mesa Verde Anasazi period should no longer be in serious doubt. Chapter 3, an extensive look at over seventy sites throughout the Southwest effectively silences any critics who might claim that Turner's assertion is not based on physical evidence. Turner chooses an interesting order of presentation, reviewing the sites in their chronlogical order of discovery. This is probably to underline that many archaeologists and anthropologists in the past came to similar conclusions. Claims of cannibalism are not new, and this is not a sensationalist theory created from a questionable interpretation of previous work in the field. It is a scientific reinforcement of previous observations and masterful overview that confirms that the early pioneers in Southwestern Archaeology were correct. Cannibalism did occur.
Had Turner stopped at a description of his methodology and the sites he reviewed, Man Corn would have been a valuable resource, but only half of what it could have been. Fortunately, Turner goes on to propose a theory explaining cannibalism and the extreme violence accompanying it. In 1993 he made a surprising discovery--the sites showing evidence of cannibalism had a strong correlation with the "Chaco Phenomenon." That is, the sites were from the same geographic area and within the same time period of the Great Houses. In fact, some sites are in fact inside the Great Houses themselves (Pueblo Bonito, Penasco Blanco).
Using this as a base, Turner devotes a chapter to body-processing in Mexico, where cannibalism had long been practiced, a fact well-known to archaeologists. He then makes the connection between Chaco's ties to Mesoamerica and the appearance of cannibalism in the American Southwest. He proposes that actual warrior/priests cultists from the Toltec culture arrived in Chaco, bringing their political system with them, a system built not on peaceful cooperation, but on ritutalistic terror. It's a convincing argument, especially when backed up by a skull found in a high-status burial at Pueblo Bonito--a skull showing dental modification characteristic of Mexican Indians; a modification unknown in the Southwest.
Turner theorizes that they might have been refugees from the collapsing Toltec Empire. My guess would be that they were imperial colonizers intent on taking over the turquoise trade and building it up to be a high-capacity monopoly. But whichever the case, they seem to have brought more than architectural ideas with them. And if, as many have suspected, Mexican religious beliefs influenced the Anasazi, then it's very likely that rituals associated with those religious beliefs were also present.
The book generated a storm of controversy. Not surprisingly, many critics mistakenly assumed that Turner was claiming that all Anasazi at all times were cannibals. This certainly wasn't the case and Turner of course proposes no such thing. But just as Darwin's pioneering work was reduced by misinformed critics to some kind of proof that man was descended from apes, so many critics have assumed Turner's book is somehow racist or culturally insensitive. In fact, just like some of Darwin's more vocal opponents, one gets the impression that some critics haven't even read "Man Corn."
Too bad. Unlike so many other books on the Anasazi, it's not as dry as dust. It's presented in an intriguing way, a survey of the past and a voyage of discovery. It has tons of data, but for each section of data, there is an interesting discussion of what it means.
I cannot recommend this book highly enough. Especialy for those who've tired of the "peaceful stargazers" school of Anasazi research. "Man Corn" makes the Anasazi appear more real, a people who had a dark side as well.
37 internautes sur 40 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile
A controversial topic17 décembre 1999
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Many readers find this and Tim White's book to be controversial, equating any references to cannibaliam as racism; cannibalism is not politically correct.
Some feel this book should be removed from press for that reason.
Having read both books, I feel that Turner & Turner make some convincing arguments for cannibalistic activity during periods of the southwestern US. If one reads this book with an open mind as to the culture and the difficulty of life during periods of stress in one of the world's most rugged landscapes, it can be a valuble reference.
The butchering, defleshing, cooking and disposal of human bones with other faunal remains is strongly suggestive of cannibalism--for ritual, subsistence or both. I find some of Turner's conclusions to be based on some rather scant evidence, but time will tell if he is correct.
Like the Maya, the Anasazi have long been viewed as peaceful; the myth of the platonic Amerind living in harmony with nature. But over time the dwellings of the Anasazi became increasingly defensive structures, suggesting there was some sort of conflict. And as with the Mayans, the myth is slowly melting away to show the Anasazi as a far more warlike people. Just like the rest of us.
After this book was written and I first reviewed it over five years ago, more evidence of cannibalism has surfaced, including a human coprolite (preserved fecal material) containing digested human myoglobin (from heart or striated muscle tissue) at Cowboy Wash. This is fairly conclusive evidence that some cannibalsim has occured, though we still don't know why. I suggest readers draw their own conclusions from all the evidence.
Remember that some extant cultures like the peoples of New Guinea have practiced cannibalism within the last twenty years, and that does not make them any less wonderful of people; it's always dangerous to project one's own views of right-and-wrong upon another culture. In particular if that culture crashed 800 years ago.
A previous writer's comment that this book will lead to an increase in looting is without merit; sites have been described in thousands of publications over the years (including USGS topographic maps), and a book is hardly likely to be a guide to looters who usually live nearby.
25 internautes sur 30 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile
Professional22 août 2000
Gnarly Old Dude
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(I'm just a lifetime Arizona resident/spectator) This book is a scholastic report from years of intensive work about a sensitive subject. One that most of us seem to automatically stay away from and think is not PC to even mention. Just read it for what it is: facts collected and reported on by professionals and add it to your data base. Its amazing the number of people in the field an average Arizonan like me has bumped into that seem to want to think there's another agenda here. I don't sense one; they seem to have done a fine job and one that is long past due. Now we need more information...from 4Corners, Hohokam, Mogollon and Mexico, and about the Mesoamerica connections at all these areas.
6 internautes sur 7 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile
Evidence!10 août 2011
Noah E. Wisecarver
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The authors of this book, the Turners present a great deal of well organized and well supported evidence for violence and cannibalism in the SW. Their evidence of cannibalism seems very sound, and they carefully separate it from the more common war violence. I had the experience of working at Al Skinner's, 8th cent. Sedillo site in Albuquerque, N.M. and personally examined two victims of violence without cannibalism. I also got a good loopk at Ti'we near Espanola, N.M,(Its been badly potted) and saw that many exposed rooms had been badly burned and saw a quartz, egg shaped grooved war club head (Ute) and several non-pueblo projectile points opn the surface in the main plaza. Again war violence but no indication of cannibalism. Hopi and Zuni tradition speak of Ogre and Monster Katchinas who punish and eat disobediant children, and the story the of the Warrior twins who destroyed the Giants who hunted the people is well known. Whether or not cannibalism was brought to the SW by Mexican followers of Tlaloc, the Plumed Serpent cults of Mexico and Central American heavily influenced the societies of SW as well as the SE from the 9th cent. until the present. Stories of the Plumed Serpent are found today at Hopi, Zuni, Jemez, and among the Central Yupik of Western Alaska as well as many other modern Native American peoples. Trade between the American SW and Mexico is clearly supported by items of exchange including shell,copper, macaws, turqoise, as well as many borrowed Mwxican architectual traits more than suggest direct communication between the SW and Mexico. All in all, the Turners arguement concerning cannibalism as one of several strong indicators of a physical intrusion by the carriers of Mexican politics, culture and religion directly into the American SW, is very strong. The fact that this theory is socially incorrect makes little sense to me. I would never support the idea that only the 16th cent. Spanish explorers were capable of physically connecting the peoples of the SW and the peoples of Mexico. Native Americans were quite capable of traveling long distances in pursuit of trade, fleeing famine, making war raids or taking captives. Read this book!! It is very revealing.