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(Oct. 24) Qianhe Academic Lunch Meeting XXXVII

Last updated :2013-10-21

Topic: Breaking the Curse of Commitment: Consciousness, Disembodiment, and Narrative in Kachin Animist Leaders’ Conversion to Christianity
Speaker: ZHANG Wenyi
11:00-13:30, Thursday, October 24, 2013
Venue: Lecture Room, 1st Floor, Martin Hall, South Campus, SYSU
Organizer: School of Sociology and Anthropology, SYSU

In China as Kachin animism declines ordinary animists stop following taboos; accordingly, spirits get annoyed and curse the ritual officiants. Some officiants then abandon animal sacrifice disembodying their animist knowledge and convert to Christianity. Based on my 29 months of fieldwork, I analyze how a specialist achieves such disembodiment through narrative. Putting previously embodied knowledge into narrative form enables the specialist to make his knowledge an object, rather than part of himself, thus by telling it he sets it aside from himself. This study aims to contribute to understanding of the correlations among narrative, embodiment, disembodiment, and consciousness.

Academic lunch meeting will be divided into two parts:

11:00–12:00 Free Exchanges of Opinions over Tea and Lunch
12:00–13:30 Keynote Speech and Discussion

Our academic lunch meeting will provide free coffee, tea, fruits, desserts and a fine selection of lunch for faculties in School of Sociology and Anthropology. Participants are required to send an email to 783364401@qq.com to confirm their reservation before noon on October 23rd.


We will offer free lunch for 5 to 8 faculties and students from other departments. Your name and major are required in the email. And if you don’t need lunch, please inform us.

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