Kayapo Chief

ray scupin (scupin@LC.LINDENWOOD.EDU)
Wed, 11 May 1994 10:30:58 -0500

Dear Colleagues:

Every once in awhile I get questions from undergrads regarding
various cultural practices that I cannot answer. I would like to post one
here. Many of them have seen the Kayapo leader Rop-ni of the Mentuktire
who has the extended bottom lip. It there a particular term for this? Do
we use the term lip plug for this? (By the way, just to make it clear,
I'm not suggesting that this practice is a harmful practice---aesthetic
judgments regarding head-flattening, body-piercing, etc. can vary and may not
be harmful practices).

Another question that students raise about this practice
is---since we also see this practice in Africa---isn't this evidence for
some sort of diffusion?

Any clarifications and suggested readings on this would be appreciated.


Ray Scupin
Sociology/Anthropology Dept.
Lindenwood College
209 S. Kingshighway
St. Charles, MO 63301
314-949-4730 (Office)
314-949-9244 (Home)
314-949-4910 (Fax)

Not chaos-like, together crushed and bruised,
But, as the world harmoniously confused:
Where order in variety we see,
And where, though all things differ, all agree

Alexander Pope