On the Nature and Transmission of <i>Bimo</i> Knowledge in Liangshan

Bamo Ayi

in Perspectives on the Yi of Southwest China

Published by University of California Press

Published in print March 2001 | ISBN: 9780520219885
Published online May 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780520935259 | DOI:
On the Nature and Transmission of Bimo Knowledge in Liangshan

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This chapter discusses the education of the bimo, the importance of patrilineal transmission of knowledge, and the ideas of education embodied in the long training and apprenticeship before a bimo can perform rituals on his own. For the national Chinese discourse, and to some extent for the local discourse of Yi identity, Nuosu society in Liangshan represents a kind of paradigm for the Yi in general—a society where outside influences were minimal and where one could see in the present what other Yi must have been like in the past, before their cultures were heavily intermixed with acculturative elements from the Han. The cosmopolitan discourse, in recent decades at least, has rejected such rigidly typological and general evolutionary schemes, and tends to view Nuosu society as something sui historically related to the other Yi.

Keywords: Yi identity; national Chinese discourses; Liangshan; cosmopolitan discourse; patrilineal transmission; bimo

Chapter.  6329 words. 

Subjects: Anthropology

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