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Guests of a sheik the violence of everyday life in Brazil by: Nancy Scheper-Hughes - Book Report/Review Example

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Name Subject Instructor Date Death Without Weeping Death Without Weeping: The Violence of Everyday Life in Brazil is a book written by Nancy Scheper-Hughes that seeks to bridge the gap between ethnographic report and personal story. The book is an extensive analysis of the Author’s 25-year experience in Alto do Cruziero, Brazil…
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Guests of a sheik the violence of everyday life in Brazil by: Nancy Scheper-Hughes
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Guests of a sheik the violence of everyday life in Brazil by: Nancy Scheper-Hughes

Download file to see previous pages... The principle focus of the book is the nature of mothers’ love for their infants especially the impoverished women, and maternal care. The author also noted extreme conditions that led to mothers not mourning their young ones’ deaths and views this a unique behavior (Scheper-Hughes 23). Nancy’s premise was based on the facts that maternal love exhibited by mothers in this region was substantially different from other cultures. This was in relation to the indifference regarding the deaths of their infants. Just like Nancy Scheper-Hughes, many readers of the book wondered why poor women in Bom Jesus bore so many babies. According to the numbers in the book, poor women went through at least ten pregnancies only for them to rear about four children as compared to their middle class counterparts who experienced two to three pregnancies. The rate of survival of the poor mother’s children was low owing to their poor living status. However, their perception remained adamantly on three children as the ideal number of babies in a complete family. The poor Bom Jesus women went through many pregnancies because of ignorance of birth control methods, their spiritual teachings, traditions and beliefs. The poor women of Bom Jesus are spiritual and followed the religious teachings strictly that took place every Sunday during mass. According to the majority of women in this region, bearing many children was the will of God. They believed that many children are blessings and bringing them up in extreme poverty was a small sacrifice to conform to God’s wishes. Another reason for having so many children by the poor women is ignorance and conservative behavior regarding birth control. In their view, old women believed that birth control was used by women who were not willing and ready to get married and bear children. However, some younger women had resulted to using some birth control but were never consistent (Scheper-Hughes 73). Therefore, they eventually got pregnant as many times as their older poor women in their community. The maternal philosophy of women of Bom Jesus was that being a good mother, a woman was supposed to have no attachment to some children because traditionally certain infants ‘wanted’ to die. This system of thought developed over the years after the realization of high expectancy of child deaths and infant mortality. These happenings were met by indifferent mothers who did not care much about their departed infants. Consequently, the women who bore the children who ‘wanted’ to die would take the initiative to help them in their journey to heaven. However, this was negligence that actually caused most of the infant deaths. Irrespective of the reasons for death that included diseases, starvation, dehydration or general negligence, the mothers never mourned their infants (Scheper-Hughes 85). The system of thought among women in this region was also shaped by extreme poverty, social and cultural influences and support from religious beliefs that accepted and encouraged the act of not morning dead infants. The author pointed out that forming relationships with people living situations of extreme poverty necessitates embracing pain and difficulties that influence the consciousness of the mothers. The pain of abject poverty and diseases makes the women used to the unfortunate events in their lives and does not give room for mourning. Women in Bom Jesus explained that irrespective of ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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