What deep insights into human cultures do non-specialists miss out on?
June 16, 2017 1:18 AM Subscribe
A question for anthropologists, linguists, cultural historians and other humanities scholars. What's the most thought-provoking custom, idea, metaphor or sociocultural phenomenon you've encountered in the academic literature that non-experts will probably never get to hear about? For example, the "sound-painting" of the Siwu , the absence of fiction or art among the Pirahã people [pdf], or the popularity of communism in 500 AD Persia [pdf]. Or to put it another way: in all your years of digging around in dusty old journals, what was your biggest "whoa" moment?