Household Social Reproduction and the Canonical Communication of Habitus

  • Richard E. Blanton
Part of the Interdisciplinary Contributions to Archaeology book series (IDCA)


In the first chapter I discussed several analytical studies that showed how house form communicates cosmological principles, what I refer to as canonical communication. Within my community and house data there is a surprising deficiency of detailed information relating to this aspect of house form and use; none of my sources contains as rich a description of domestic symbolism as is found in, for example, Blier (1987), Bourdieu (1973), Cunningham (1973), or Gossen (1972), in which houses are shown to constitute a link between broad cosmological principles on the one hand, and gender, generational, and rank differences on the other. But the comparative lack of information in the coded sources cannot be taken to mean that canonical communication was of no importance in at least some of my coded cases. Although the data are poor, they are sufficient to demonstrate a considerable degree of variation in the richness and quantity of canonical communication in the houses in my sample, what Waterson (1990: xvi) refers to as “symbolic load.”


Costly House Social Reproduction Rural House Cosmological Principle House Form 
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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 1994

Authors and Affiliations

  • Richard E. Blanton
    • 1
  1. 1.Purdue UniversityWest LafayetteUSA

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