Don’t Sleep, There are Snakes: Life and Language in the Amazonian Jungle

In this course, we have already read about many of the early explorers who came to the Amazon. They entered with their own expectations and dreams, many of which collapsed once they experienced true Amazon, its landscape and its people. In the book Don’t Sleep, There are Snakes: Life and Language in the Amazonian Jungle, we see twentieth century linguist Daniel Everett approach an Amazonian people group with his own preconceived notions. He expects to find a vibrant culture of painted forest people who he will convert to his own religion, Christianity. Once there, Everett finds these people are neither painted or willing adopt foreign ideas. Instead, they convert him to a new way of life, security, and happiness: the way of the Pirahã.

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