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The Origin of Table Manners

Mythologiques, Volume 3

"The Origin of Table Manners is the third volume of a tetralogy devoted to American Indian mythology. Unlike the first two volumes (The Raw and the Cooked, From Honey to Ashes), which are devoted to South American myths, the present one establishes relations with North America, which is the subject of the fourth (The Naked Man). . . . In the course of the analysis, the myths link up with ideas of more general interest. Thus, we find discussions of numeration, of morals, and of the origin of the novel. . . . The Origin of Table Manners is thus of special interest to students of American Indian mythology, although it contains ideas of interest to other fields and even to the general reader."—Daniel C. Raffalovich, American Anthropologist

"An immense anthropological erudition is here wielded by one of the world’s finest minds, and the myths themselves have never been taken more seriously. . . . [Lévi-Strauss] raises issues and then resolves them with the suspenseful cunning of a mystery novelist."—John Updike, New Yorker

552 pages | 8 maps and line drawings | 5.30 x 8.00 | © 1978

Anthropology: Cultural and Social Anthropology

Table of Contents

Table of Symbols
Part One: The Mystery of the Woman Cut Into Pieces
1. At the Scene of the Crime
2. A Clinging Half
Part Two: From Myth to Novel
1. The Days and the Seasons
2. The Daily Round
Part Three: The Canoe Journey of the Moon and the Sun
1. Exotic Love
2. The Stars in their Courses
Part Four: Exemplary Little Girls
1. On Being a Young Lady
2. The Porcupine’s Instructions
Part Five: A Wolfish Appetite
1. The Embarrassment of Choosing
2. A Dish of Tripe Mandan Style
Part Six: An Even Balance
1. Groups of Ten
2. Three Adornments
Part Seven: The Rules of Good Breeding
1. The Susceptible Ferryman
2. A Short Treatise on Culinary Anthropology
3. The Moral of the Myths
Index of Myths
General Index

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