Philippe Descola Quotes
“In marked contrast to the relaxed, typically Latin attitude of the Dominicans the Protestant missionaries were still proceeding at full blast with the fight for souls. These North American evangelists of strictly fundamentalist inclination combined in a curious fashion strict adhesion to the literal meaning of the Old Testament With mastery of the most modern technology. Most of them came from small towns in the Bible Belt, armed with unshakably clear consciences and a rudimentary smattering of theology, convinced that they alone were the repositories of Christian values now abolished elsewhere. Totally ignorant of the vast world, despite their transplantation, and taking the few articles of morality accepted in the rural Amenca of their childhoods to be a universal credo, they strove bravely to spread these principles of salvation all around them.
Their rustic faith was well served by a flotilla of light aircraft, a powerful radio, an ultra-modern hospital and four-wheel-drive vehicles -- in short, all the equipment that a battalion of crusaders dropped behind enemy lines needed.”
“As I see it, anthropology’s mission is to attempt, alongside other sciences but using its own methods, to render intelligible the way in which organisms of a particular kind find a place in the world, acquire a stable representation of it, and contribute to its transformation by forging with it and between one another links either constant or occasional and of a remarkable but not infinite diversity. Before constructing a new charter for the future in gestation, we need first to map out those links, understand their nature more clearly, establish their modes of compatibility and incompatibility, and examine how they take shape in their patently distinctive ways of being in the world.”