In and around the Himalayan foothills, small culturally distinct societies - some now Chinese ethnic minorities (Naxi and Mosuo among others) - share a complex history of contact with different societies, especially with the Han, the Mongol, the Tibetan, and the Hill Peoples in Indochina and India. Many of these societies share unilineal descent or bilineal descent patterns that can be traced into ancient history. Several of them are or used to be matrilineal, including the Mosuo, who not only practice matrilineality but who promote non-marriage customs.
There are many gaps in the ethnographic records, as well as a fragmentation of information that blurs our understanding of these cultures. For Volume 2, Issue I of Matrix: a Journal for Matricultural Studies, we invite contributions from scholars (ethnologists, historians, anthropologists, and linguists, among others) who have worked with these societies. The goal is to develop a synthesis between social structures and worldview, including religions, cosmologies and views of the environment.
Potential topics for this issue of Matrix include both aspects of cultural systems in the past and their present fate in contemporary East Asian states. Possibilities include but are not limited to the following:
- the articulation between matrilines and subsistence patterns
- the link between ritual life and matrilines
- the role of the brother / sister relationship in social and ritual life
- linguistic markers and support of matriculturality
- ethnographic or ethnohistorical accounts
- Buddhism and matriculture
- Bon traditions and matrilineality
- economic development and matriculture
Please forward an abstract of 300 words (max) to email@example.com (subject line: Matrix Vol.2, Iss. I) before 16 August 2019.
Matrix: a Journal for Matricultural Studies is an open access, peer-reviewed and refereed scholarly journal published by the International Network for Training, Education, and Research on Culture (Network on Culture), Canada. Matrix is published online on a biannual basis.
For many years, scholarship has explored the expression and role of women in culture from various perspectives such as kinship, economics, ritual, etc., but so far, the idea of approaching culture as a whole, taking the female world as primary, as a cultural system in Geertz' classical sense of the term - a matriculture - has gone unnoticed. Some cultures have a weakly defined matricultural system; others have strong matricultural systems with various ramifications that may include but are not limited to, matrilineal kinship, matrilocality, matriarchal governance features - all of which have serious consequences relative to the socio-cultural status of women, men, children, and the entire community of humans, animals, and the environment.
The main objective of Matrix is to provide a forum for those who are working from this theoretical stance. We encourage submissions from scholars from around the world who are ready to take a new look at the ways in which people - women and men, historically and currently - have organized themseves into meaningful relationships; the myths, customs, and laws which support these relationships; and the ways in which researchers have documented and perhaps mis-labeled the matricultures they encounter.