Transformation in Ritual

  • Mathias Guenther


This and the remaining two chapters deal with transformation as it occurs to humans in the Second Order of Existence, in the contexts, respectively, of ritual, ludic dancing and hunting. Chapter  5 considers humans—of both genders and generations, men and women, girls and boys—in ritual and liminal moments during the trance dance and initiation rite, when, who and what they are undergoes alteration and transition and through it different forms and degrees of transformation. Once again, we meet the lion—the trance dancer’s primary animal avatar, as well as the ubiquitous, myth- and meat-laden eland, at the centre of initiation rites of both girls and boys, the transformed-into animal for both—as well as, in the case of the girls, attendants at the rite, through the kinaesthetic effects of the pan-San eland dance.


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Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2020

Authors and Affiliations

  • Mathias Guenther
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of AnthropologyWilfrid Laurier UniversityOntarioCanada

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