An anthropologist on the moon: Anthropology Blog.: In the suburbs of Time: Humanity..
“ And men will explain each other untold stories that will always be the same. ”
“It takes very little to create mankind”
In March 2001 the c OMPANY AGIP oil , fifth refiner in Europe, with an invested capital worldwide of 4.616 million euros, which has seen their profits in the last eight years in a 297 by 100, signs a contractwith communities Huaorani of Ecuador, to which, in exchange for ceding their territory to propección oil, promises to deliver, literally :
– 50 kilos of rice.
– 50 kilos of sugar.
– Two cubes of fat.
– A bag of salt.
– A referee’s whistle.
– Two soccer balls.
– Fifteen plates.
– Fifteen cups.
– A closet with $ 200 in medicines in a single match.
The Huoranis rejected the offer: you can serve a ball and whistle of referee if it has lost ground in which to play football?
But the huaoraníes it really would have been fooled if you have been fooled? wonder Carlos Fernández Liria and Santiago Alba Rico, philosophers and writers:
“We must be very desperate and hungry to want to grab at all costs more land, more oil, more houses, televisions, cars …, and must be very satisfied, very quiet, to appreciate the treasure of fifteen cups and a football whistle. Among 297 growth of 100 and a ball, some plates and some medicine, reason, imagination, morality, health and poetry have no doubts. Between 100 297 growth and a bowl of rice Any sensible man will choose the rice “
With a bowl of rice and a few very specific things can make a human being. “It takes very little to create mankind” , said Levi-Strauss in his book Tristes Tropiques. “few things are needed to exist, little space , little food, little joy, few utensils or tools, is life in a handkerchief. “
Capitalism throws us a lack of boundaries, denial of humanity and citizenship.
If we are radically anti-capitalist is because capitalism requires the company to set up a kind of junk dimension . With a crude metaphor, one could say that capitalism takes up too much room for society to cope at home. It produces more capital to produce capital. least is if the path satisfy human needs and social. Capitalism is an economy with a society, not a society that has an economy.
But how much effort we have put the apologists of capitalism to make us believe that there is something in human nature insatiable, so that human beings always want to want more, never achieve that anthropologists give them reason. On the contrary,anthropology is used to find the human being rather stopped , stuck in a kind of consistency Neolithic very slowly progressing or not progressing at all. Even if the man had any insatiable, never would be to absurd lengths to which capitalism has led us.
Human beings never would have thought to invent techniques and machinery capable of working for him on a colossal scale and still, despite everything, working excessively same, exhausting and suicidal.Since prehistoric times, when a man has found a way to work less and produce more, which has been sensibly take this advantage to put to rest . Were accurate or slavery whip to make him continue working beyond your needs. Now, we need capitalism. But it is the human being who is insatiable, but capitalism that can not be stopped. The man, insatiable or not, knows stopping to rest. Capitalism.
The Greek myth that Cronus (Saturn) devoured his children at birth , in the same manner as the years the days and hours are consumed endlessly in the inevitability of time passing. Under these conditions it was impossible any human political life. It was as if the wind cast forth below whatever gods and men tried to build. Thus, it was impossible to sit down and talk, to dialogue, to legislate. Citizenship was impossible, because they could not find anything solid to hold on to, not a totem, or a ritual, or a custom, even the language remained, it had all the wind, the weather.Zeus managed to defeat his father Cronos. stopped Weather reign.certainly was passing the time, but he was not the owner of everything.Men might raise institutions, palaces and temples, customs legislation and talk, talk. Weather back and the Word took his place.
At the Neolithic man discovered agriculture and livestock, invented instruments and the most important tools, managed to successfully protect yourself from the elements of nature. But the Neolithic was, above all, a victory over time
. The man had managed to wrest a bit of leisure and tranquility to the merciless passage of days and seasons, open a parenthesis in which simply wasting time and get to chat, a parenthesis, ultimately, that’s what call-to what anthropology calls “culture”
If we think about what is the mythology, we see that they are characterized by a kind of obsession withthe beginning . The myth tells how things happened for the first time : the men and yet animals were different, good and evil still could not differentiate, heaven and earth, day and night, men and women were indistinguishable. So certain things happened, a worldwide flood, a huge fire, a cataclysm.True heroes (gods or men or women or animals or …) staged some adventures and everything that was created to make possible the life of the community.
This obsession with counting beginning at hides mythological mentality animosity against time and history. Claude Levi Strauss used to say that the people he studied were characterized by “the desire of no history” “people are made to last, not to change. “ he said. “They do not want in a historical period, but on a periodic time annul himself as the regular alternation of day and night or the cycle of the seasons”
History is the privilege of Heroes. The Word is the privilege of humans. The Indians think that if they keep their mythological stories remember what to do in each case, and if you follow their customs and rituals, and a flood will never happen, a fire or become terrible things happen when our ancestors had to contend with new and unpredictable events.
They care that nothing happens, and when something happens, you can fix it by word. Man is man from the moment he started to fix things through language. But to reign language, must cease to reign Time Men can not get to talk in the middle of a storm or a cataclysm, and capitalism is a relentless cataclysm.
If the word has more authority than time, is the enormous amount of time to shut up in it, in the voice of experience, of the ancestors and the elders.
“Our science would not have come to understand its importance if in some regions of the Earth men had not stubbornly resisted history, and remained as a vivid proof of what we want to save “
Levi Strauss. Levi-Strauss used to say that anthropologists found their subject matter in the dustbin of historians and sociologists . Anthropology seems to take care of collecting the waste than other human sciences being abandoned along the way. While studying history what changes, anthropology deals with a being bent on repeating . History studies developments. Anthropology studies gossip . The documents studied history, anthropology the oral transmission . The one wants to know what happened, the other what it has happened. And yet, we must ask what anthropology limits “that we want to save”, the least for humans. Today while going dizzying history, anthropology notes that men, by contrast, appear to have been committed to undertake the same task always . The human being always has managed to keep doing what you always did, something like what we see in the unforgettable pictures of there in Tristres nambikaras Tropics: delouse each other, handle a few tools, talk, distinguishing those who are his cousins and believe in the gods. There’s always a corner, a crack, in which the human being does have customs, it is possible to do nothing sit and talk in the House of the Word . The man has managed to protect the history with some effectiveness, as protected nature, building institutions that support their cousins, their gods and their lice, and considering the historical events as part of the natural landscape.
The human being is very limited , much more limited than what has come to be able to do thanks to technology. The human being can even push a button and destroy the world. His power is infinite, but their imagination, reporesentación capcidad, and above all, moral understanding, remain finite, limited, rooted in a kind of coarseness Neolithic. The disproportion between the action and its impact is so great that the imagination becomes disoriented. Humans are made to feel the death of a loved one, even many loved ones and unloved, but the 200,000 number tells us nothing emotionally. ‘s impossible, humanly speaking, feeling responsible for the Iraq war . Where most banal our daily habits (the one to send a message by phone or choose a cereal brand) have a relationship with something terrible is happening in the Congo or the deaths of fifteen children in Indonesia, it is very difficult to apply our traditional concept of responsibility. You can represent the damage that can be done with a club, but not with a cluster bomb. Much less to understand and judge morally the effects of WMD most powerful of all:the world economic system.
If under capitalism we remain human beings is almost a miracle. “
|Father Time Vanquished by Love, Hope and Beauty. Simon Vouet.
“The wreck of man” Santiago Alba Rico, Carlos Fernandez Liria.