Nonnie Furbee

Professor Nonnie Louanna Furbee

Primary Field
Linguistic Anthropology
https://anthropology.missouri.edu/
Professor Emerita of Anthropology, University of Missouri, Department of Anthropology
Latest Updates
    PostedSaturday, August 7, 2021 at 1:49 AM
    Current Research I am writing two books. Both take up disruption in Tojol-ab'al Mayan villages. 1) The first describes how responses to a miracle that occurred in the village of Lomantán—a religious reflection of the Zapatista Uprising—tamped down conflicts associated with the Uprising by diverting resources to supporting to the miracle. When the miracle brought fame to Lomantán, it attracted money and labor from many Tojol-ab'al villages to create a pilgrimage site in Lomantán. The unusual cooperation among communities spared them much disorder. 2) The second book examines the cosmological underpinnings of agricultural practice in Tojol-ab'al communities and gives cosmological support to the 'vegetative metaphor' that is thought to govern Mayan ideas about the roles of humans in the cosmos. Festivals mark seasonal changes important to agricultural activity that ensures a proper harvest. The predictability of appropriate climate in seasons is now challenged by global warming.
    Current Research I am writing two books. Both take up disruption in Tojol-ab'al Mayan villages. 1) The first describes how responses to a miracle that occurred in the village of Lomantán—a religious reflection of the Zapatista Uprising—tamped down conflicts associated with the Uprising by diverting resources to supporting to the miracle. When the miracle brought fame to Lomantán, it attracted money and labor from many Tojol-ab'al villages to create a pilgrimage site in Lomantán. The unusual cooperation among communities spared them much disorder. 2) The second book examines the cosmological underpinnings of agricultural practice in Tojol-ab'al communities and gives cosmological support to the 'vegetative metaphor' that is thought to govern Mayan ideas about the roles of humans in the cosmos. Festivals mark seasonal changes important to agricultural activity that ensures a proper harvest. The predictability of appropriate climate in seasons is now challenged by global warming.
Knowledge / Expertise
Interest/Specialty Areas Mayan Languages (Tojol-ab'al) Language, Culture, and Thought Language Documentation Endangered Languages Knowledge Acquisition Expert Systems Classification and Categorization Indigenous Knowledge Methods
Biography

Profile My intellectual concerns are language, culture, and thought, and the relationships among them. I am both a Mesoamericanist, specifically a Mayanist, and an Andeanist. I have also worked in the North American Great Plains to describe and document the language of the Chiwere Siouan, the language of the Otoe, Missouria, and Ioway. In 2003, I took early retirement to work more extensively on the research interests I've outlined below, and to involve myself more with service to the profession - through efforts to maintain endengered languages. I spend about 3 months each year in the field in Latin America (in Chiapas, Mexico, and in Peru), but I continue to work with graduate and undergraduate students, mostly helping to train and place them in field settings.

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