A Conversation for Cargo Cults


Post 1

Titania (gone for lunch)

This is the great thing about the Guide - you learn about things you'd never thought existed! Good entry!smiley - ok


Post 2


Yes, fascinating!

Just one tiny flaw that’s crept past the excellent efforts of the Researcher and Editor: in the 2nd paragraph,

“The exchange of goods and objects of wealth are a fundamental way in which communities and social relationships are maintained.”

- should be:

“The exchange of goods and objects of wealth is a fundamental way in which communities and social relationships are maintained.”

(If the sentence had read: “Exchanges of goods ...” then “are” would have been correct.)

A small thing, but it pulls me up short, and this one is creeping into quite a few h2g2 pages.



Post 3

riotact : like a phoenix from the ashes

"john frum" was most likely john FROM... (his hometown).

as anyone who has read "the golden bough" can tell you, magic is at the root of civilisation, and the veneer that makes us SEEM different from these islanders is very thin. their logic is not so different from present day american political theory, and much less dangerous.


Post 4


Thank you Titania smiley - smiley

I agree - I didn't know anything about Cargo Cults before MotDoc referred to them in another entry. So it's all down to him smiley - ok

smiley - cheers
Fbsmiley - starsmiley - star


Post 5

fords - number 1 all over heaven

You're absolutely right on this one Didactylos - I'm such a stickler for good English too, I can't believe I missed that one! smiley - flustered


Post 6


smiley - blush I'm ashamed that one got through Didactylos smiley - sorry I should have spotted it and like Fords, I get grumpy with other people's lousy grammar

Fbsmiley - starsmiley - star


Post 7


Hello riotact smiley - smiley
They're only less dangerous because they're not the most powerful nation in the world smiley - sadface


Post 8


Terrific entry smiley - smiley

I too am surprised that I never knew about these - especially since I researched an entry on Lyndon Johnson smiley - winkeye

Anyway, well done F/b and MotDoc. smiley - bubbly

smiley - blacksheep


Post 9

MotDoc, Temporarily Exiled to Tartu, Estonia

I doubt the incident was a big part of Johnson's career, Jodan.

Congrats to fords and F/b for the excellent work both of them did on this entry. We are all ashamed at missing the typo (especially me since I wrote that part) but I suppose there is no such thing as perfect writing and one way or the other things creep through. Much more shockingly ungrammatical entries have been accepted as edited in the past, to the chagrin of all those associated with the Guide.

As for the comment on how people think, this is one of the basic arguments that Marvis Harris makes in Cows, Pigs, Wars, and Witches which was the source of much of my raw material. He says that however bizarre these rituals and theories may appear to us, there is something inherently magical about the way in which some societies get wealth while others don't, and overall Adam Smith and Yali have a great deal in common. Economics is its own mystical framework, with diagrams that hold great magical power, untouchable but all-powerful gods of supply and demand, and odd rituals to bring wealth to yourself. Perhaps an analysis of the mystical properties of economic theory would be good, at least for the underguide.
smiley - martiansmile

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