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Uto-Aztecan studies: A discussion

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image of Method & Theory in the Study of Religion

This article grew out of participation in the Workshop on Uto-Aztecan Religions and Cosmologies. The goal of the workshop was to explore similarities and differences in the religions and cosmologies of the various Uto-Aztecan societies. In this article I follow two lines of inquiry: The one promotes a comparative discussion of cosmological structural systems, and the other attempts to identify one or more motifs which might prove to be evident in Uto-Aztecan mythologies. Based on the religion of the Hopi Indians of Arizona, I suggest that one of the most productive motifs is that of gender. For the Hopis it is shown that cosmology and gender seem to converge in social and religious statements about gender that include androgynous and duogynous themes. Insights from mythology and ritual are then applied to the social ideals and practices of the Hopis.

Affiliations: 1: University of Aarhus, Denmark


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