Trees, Knots and Outriggers (Kaynen Muyuw) is the culmination of twenty-five years of work by Frederick H. Damon and his attention to cultural adaptations to the environment in Melanesia. Damon details the intricacies of indigenous knowledge and practice in his sweeping synthesis of symbolic and structuralist anthropology with recent developments in historical ecology. This book is a long conversation between the author's many Papua New Guinea informants, teachers and friends, and scientists in Australia, Europe and the United States, in which a spirit of adventure and discovery is palpable.
Frederick H. Damon is Professor of Anthropology at the University of Virginia.
List of Figures Acknowledgments Introduction PART I: AMONG THE SCIENTISTS: NEW PERSPECTIVES ON THE MASSIM Chapter 1. Return to the Garden: Gwed, locating intentions and interpretive puzzles PART II: TOWARDS AN ETHNOGRAPHY OF TREES Chapter 2. The Trees: Classificatory forms, landscape beacons and basic categories Chapter 3. The Forests and the Fire: Tasim, Inverted Landscapes, and Tree Meanings Chapter 4. A Story of Calophyllum. From Ecological to Social Facts PART III: SYNTHESIZING MODELS Chapter 5. Vatul: A Life Form and a Form for Life Chapter 6. Geometries of Motion: Trees and the Boats of the Eastern Kula Ring References