By Stephen Gudeman
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Extra info for Anthropology and Economy
In minutes one of my companions had fashioned a replacement using his knife to cut and shape a vine, though he was momentarily diverted to kill a deadly snake. On looking around I saw that he and the other two were hefting packs adapted from 100-kilo rice sacks made of ﬁber. The dynamics of thrift in the house are different from the dynamics of proﬁt making in the market. Both are means-to-ends acts; both have to do with limiting the use of means; and both unfold over time. But thrift presumes that the stream of wealth is limited, whereas proﬁt making may expand the stream.
The people would respond that their strength to work came from the house and its base, so drawing on the house model to answer. org/core. org/core/terms. 002 The house a base of savings to make a base, from where did the ﬁrst base come? For some moments, we were met with silence. ’” The people were stumped and there was silence, until another person responded that God gave the ﬁrst base – it was the Garden of Eden. Her answer, elegant and parsimonious, brought closure to their model of economy as a system of circulating wealth.
Through this exchange, houses and their members contain the vital energy of others; strength is distributed and connects people and houses. Sharing in the house through joint work and consumption, which makes each person connected to others, provides the model for exchange between houses through which there is a broader sharing of the vital current that connects one to the other. More complex are the collective work gatherings that have a ritual and festal element, even if they sometimes are ambiguous in intent and can be used to exploit or appropriate.
Anthropology and Economy by Stephen Gudeman