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Maya Apocalypse: Seventeen Years with the Women of a Yucatan Village

Maya Apocalypse: Seventeen Years with the Women of a Yucatan Village (Hardback)

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Maya Apocalypse is the record of a fieldwork experience which, as happens so often, ended up quite differently from the way it was originally planned. Felicitas Goodman was conducting in a research project about speaking in tongues (glossolalia). After recording this non-ordinary speech behaviour among English and Spanish speaking members of Pentecostal congregations, she sought to discover whether speaking a so-called "exotic," i.e. non-Indo-European language would in some way change certain basic linguistic patterns. A Mexican Apostolic Pentecostal minister kindly recommended the preacher in a Maya village in Yucatan (Mexico). The congregation she came to know in 1969 subsequently experienced a "crisis cult" in response to a prediction of the end of the world, which was to take place on September 1, 1970. Goodman subsequently spent a part of every year until 1986 with the women of the congregation. Maya Apocalypse is a record of that fieldwork, which eventually covered not only the events in the temple, both ordinary and extraordinary, but also the lives of the women who acted as informants, especially Dona Eus, to whom this work is affectionately dedicated.

Felicitas D. Goodman taught anthropology at Denison University until her retirement. She has written a number of books, including Speaking in Tongues; The Exorcism of Anneliese Michel; How about Demons; Ecstacy, Ritual, and Alternate Reality; and Where the Spirits Ride the Wind.

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