Re: ritual destruction

desmith (
29 Nov 1996 17:09:16 GMT

Jason Morris ( wrote:
> what is the name of the ritual done by an eskimo/indian group in the
> northwest US? i know it involves the destruction of property but i
> can't recall its name or why they do it. please message me at
> thanks in advance.

You are almost certainly referring to the word "potlatch." The groups
involved are on the Northwest Coast. The designations of these groups may
not matter for your purposes. Eskimo of the adjacent southern part of
Alaska are probably also involved, but the Northwest Coast goups are the
ones involved in the Classic "potlatch."

Derek G. Smith
Department of Sociology and Anthropology
Carleton University
Ottawa, Ontario, Canada K1S 5B6
Email address: