Marina Roseman Book Review

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In her book, Marina Roseman takes a dominantly particular approach in explaining meanings of health, illness, and music. Although this style complicates her work, the details are essential to the big picture of how the Temiar healing ceremony works. Benjamin Koen’s universal approach makes his book somewhat conceptually repetitive and distant from the specific Badakhshan healing ceremony. However, his comparisons to other forms of models help understand the diversity in specific forms of practice and the commonality in purpose. Balancing the particular and universal elements is essential to our understanding of the cultural practice by itself and in comparison to others. Roseman justifies using a lot of details to help build our understanding of the sociohistorical and especially cultural context of Temiar beliefs and practices. She focuses on Temiar’s understanding of their selves, others and the universe, source of health and illness and the structure of the healing ceremony. Roseman presents all this information to explain that the “inter-penetrable domain”(4) of the physical world reflects Temiars understanding of the spiritual world. The Temiar believe human souls and spirits of plants, animals and other entities in nature are always interacting to preserve order and…show more content…
Roseman illustrates the ceremony thoroughly because the conditions of who can become medium, the timing, and the patterns in musical performance all have cultural meanings. Specific music and movement structure including instrumental music mimic valued sounds of nature that are parallel to the human heart and create a sense of longing (169). The medium performs his the song with a chorus and instrumental music weaving through complementarily (cite). At the end, the medium pours the kahyek, or waterlike energy coming from other spirits (30), into the patient, making the patient whole and oriented

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