publication of his ï¬eldwork carried out in 1938 â 39 and presented in his doctoral dissertation in 1940. It has not been updated or revised much; the bibliography has only three citations later than 1940. This fact has consequences. It documents many practices that no longer exist. On the other hand, it does not take advantage of many more recent monographic works: Jeffrey and Mary Parsonsâs Maguey Utilization in Highland Central Mexico (1990) is an excellent and much more detailed description of the making of pulque; William Merrillâs RarÃ¡muri Souls (1988) describes the social meaning of tesgÃ¼ino for the Tarahumara; and Alfredo LÃ³pez Austinâs The Myths of the Opossum (1993) explores the mythological relationships among the moon, pulque, and the opossum. Given Brumanâs extensive ï¬eldwork and the period when he explored Mexico, it is a pity that he provides so few ethnographic details. Reading the book is almost like reading an annotated table. He clearly describes the geographic regions involved, the various plants fermented, the groups partaking of the brews, even the characteristics and taste of the various âwines,â but we get practically no description of the role these beverages played in the social, religious, and mythological life
Hispanic American Historical Review – Duke University Press
Published: Feb 1, 2002
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