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Le Regard du serpent: Réflexions sur la théorie de la contamination chez les Bisa de Haute-Volta

Sylvie Fainzang
L'Homme
T. 24, No. 3/4 (Jul. - Dec., 1984), pp. 83-89
Published by: EHESS
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/25132072
Page Count: 7
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Le Regard du serpent: Réflexions sur la théorie de la contamination chez les Bisa de Haute-Volta
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Abstract

Les Bisa envisagent la contamination sous le double rapport des conditions dans lesquelles elle se réalise et de la signification qu'elle revêt. Ils reconnaissent ainsi deux schémas distincts dont l'un postule la transmission " mécanique " (" naturelle ") d'une propriété, et l'autre une opération de marquage du corps, ayant valeur de sanction (" surnaturelle ") d'une faute. Cet article invite à s'interroger sur la validité de certaines analyses selon lesquelles les représentations relatives à la contamination seraient toutes dotées d'une fonction sociale. /// The Bisa apprehend contamination in the dual perspective of the conditions in which it occurs and the meaning it acquires. They thus recognize two distinct explanatory schemes: one postulating the "mechanical" ("natural") transmission of a given property, the other a corporal manifestation signifying ("supernatural") punishment. This article raises questions regarding the validity of the view that all representations related to contamination necessarily have a social function.

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