Home    Number 1, 2014

Primitive Age Initiations in the Circle of "Eternal" Questions

Type of publication: Research Article

About author(s)

M.V. Tendryakova | mashatendryak@gmail.com


initiation, rites of passage, puberty rites, socialization, anthropology/ethnography of childhood, segregation, closed communities


The article addresses controversial questions pertaining to the classification of rites of passage and the taxonomical grounds for separating out the initiation rites; this, on the one hand, distinguishes the age initiations among the multiplicity of life cycle rituals; on the other, makes it possible to reclassify to the same category a variety of different phenomena such as joining a sect, lodge, or fraternity, ordaining a king or knight to an order, as well as baptism, confirmation, and age initiations. The author discusses an array of aspects of initiations: sacrament and access to esoteric knowledge; mechanisms of identifi cation with a new social role; death symbolism; and pain in initiations and various approaches to its interpretation.


Tendryakova, M.V. 2014. Primitive Age Initiations in the Circle of “Eternal” Questions. Etnograficheskoe obozrenie 1: 91-101

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