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Review: The Totalitarianism of Mind

Author(s): Edward W. Said
Reviewed work(s):
The Savage Mind by Claude Lévi-Strauss
Source: The Kenyon Review, Vol. 29, No. 2 (Mar., 1967), pp. 256-268
Published by: Kenyon College
Stable URL:
Accessed: 11/02/2009 18:12

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there is no way of proving Levi-Strauss. THE SAVAGE MIND by Claude suited to Levi-Strauss's cal law of mind that is not adventurous design. mind to naked particularity. the difference between simple THE and complex thought. who reduction can only be in Point Counter Point an. The Universi. which entails the resolute The audacity of Claude denial of everything but the Levi-Strauss's work has a evidence of direct perception. but be- tween the greater immediacy TOTALITARIANISM and intelligibility of the primi- tive concrete and the lesser OF MIND immediacy and intelligibility of the scientific abstraction. for the existence of God. perceptions will be integrated . In Tristes only the law of the primitive Tropiques.has always seemed the method Strauss's postulation of a radi. comic analogy in Aldous It is because this Cartesian Huxley's Lord Gattenden. For.settings-in the unfamiliarity narily mathematical proof of of a Brazilian jungle.95. the tific goal as "a sort of super- difference between primitive rationalism in which sense- and scientific thought is not. lar." A little instance-that anthropology less extraordinary is Levi. Said as we might like to believe. REVIEWS EdwardW. $5.practiced today in the most nounces over the telephone different and distant of that he has "a most extraordi. a superb personal or savage mind but also a very document. and formulates his scien- Levi-Strauss contends.all this except by opening the ty of Chicago Press. he frankly admits close cousin to the laws of his "infirmity" for the particu- modem scientific thought.

today. It is almost scientist and rationalist whose impossible to sum up L6vi. after the appearance of the the Levi-Straussian oeuvre is French original. This is super-ration. Writing about him to apply the findings of his means writing him. or. the name of a species century not because it is of violet. as a student tinker with his ideas piecemeal. By profession a dedicated ably. yet. field anthropologist. about something but because alism fully integrated to the it is something in a very re- sense perception of a common markable way. though it is always the individual must confront possible to have nothing to do what-Ikvi-Strauss said in his with the system by ignoring it. L6vi- It is not entirely fortuitous Strauss is seriously hesitant that LUvi-Strauss is the most when asked. La Savage Mind. to criticize him Strauss seems to feel the in the Anglo-Saxon way. which would elementary kinship structures. So thought. level. As a except for mirrors. The Savage Mind is one dust jacket of the original of the greatest books of the shows. One is as much flower: a pun could not il. As such. of primitive society whose first He seems either to require book was a massive study of total rejection. . or a to a tribe of neolithic Indians kind of slavish paraphrase. Levi- alternatively. In The jectively very concrete. lustrate a point more service. fascinating for that. in Brazil is effectively to deny This kind of problem is charac- his mind and body their habits teristic of the best systematic and customary protection. which is research to other matters-art like being in a room empty and politics. one is dealing Pens6e Sauvage. Leibnitz or Spinoza. severity reminds one of Strauss in a few sentences. The gravity of a very serious re- hardest thing of all is to sponsibility. of which The with a man whose work has Savage Mind is the translation made allowances for practically made anonymously four years every contingency. most primitive every criticism made of it. for example. read by it as a reader of it. structure anticipates nearly ly intelligible. as he was by challenging intellectual figure Georges Charbonnier in 1959." of a whole new system that To expose a civilized man ought to supplant his. as the pretty French Thus. and. its reasoning at its most complete. inaugural lecture at the My contention is that L6vi- CollUge de France in 1960-is Strauss is too important and objectively different and sub. is at the same Possibility itself: provided that time a system of the mind one accepts a few terms. 257 into reasoning and yet lose probably involve the creation none of their properties.

to feel that Sartre's antago- mologies" of the kind that one nism to system is the result of finds between members of an insufficient thoroughness. But there is a demonstrable To say that The Savage Mind continuity between this ami- is also a damaging attack on cable cutting-down of Sartre. thought or ahistorical. as well as is the critique of Sartre. of which Le cru et le cuit (Sartre. There no mean feat. preparing an answer: it all subtitled Mythologiques (an. Sartre is to remark how which is prefaced and con- Sartre and Levi-Strauss now cluded with genuine protest- divide French intellectual life ations of admiration. its from object B. system. one is made of A is primarily its divergence . and it is suita- he had summed up his previous bly left to the end of the book. or between Very few writers give the primitive and scientific mind. is now (The Raw and the Cooked). a pause like Sartre. in his own words. alone but from its difference its impulse demonic. Sartre becomes in- method so that he can produce cluded in Levi-Strauss's book. The significance manner vigilant. the chapter is also Levi- cal descriptions of native Strauss's way of showing how practices all over the world. to and given a place in his however. promises to be the great intel- other pun). impression of having thought Over the years. the most formidably difficult literally. Sartre arguing for as intelligible objects. the machinery to do the job. "Difference. even the most intractable Lvi-Strauss is nothing if opponent can be assimilated not methodologically secure. Object history and Lvi-Strauss for A derives its intelligibility for system. is atic thought is really the most the wedge between things that "objective" subject of men's makes possible their perception attention.) only volume to have appeared. and The Savage thought. is the first and lectual debate of the decade. work before launching a vast after Lvi-Strauss has set up and interminable enterprise. he has perfect. different families. the assimilation is and a theoretical reprise. Since L4vi-Strauss's the perceiver not from itself rationale is highly nuanced. of course. It is a victory of form Mind with his Totemism repre.258 REVIEWS his tendency is to show "ho. even lyri. more energetically than L6vi- ed his so-called structural Strauss. over matter. but wittily engaging. I understand. and ILAvi- between them: the purpose of Strauss's description of how this lofty controversy is to the savage mind confronts show whether historical what is different from it. With an adversary sent. the last work in what the French call chapter of The Savage Mind sciences humaines." before all.

never. there is no for a code. person who uses it. a piano is different are naturally useful to them. even precious. What is Frazer. correspondence between words Hierarchies of value that place and objects if only because society A above society B are words are not substitutes for local my. as to is classification. physics should not cannot depend on a one-to-one appear to be very sloppy. as people do who are difference. is the only way in which man since writing seems to have differs from animals. by the highly (words) intelligible to every complex. kvi- society has a whole theory Strauss wrote that "the re- about the importance of a cow lation between man and his as opposed to that of a dog. believed that common to all people. or insti. cation. SAID 259 from B and C. the activity itself. In a fascinating specu- Strauss offers no explanation lation he allowed himself as he for the necessity of communi. an activity what that divergence might in that always takes place on an fact be. arbitrary and absurd when ences-hence. is com. But nothing is difference. neolithic age. a rage for order. writing.EDWARD W. simply in terms of nature. To a primitives name things that musician. and so on. appeared in a great number of cieties have language: this is different societies during the a "given. standards of the aboriginal munication. "savages" did everything arbi- theless. or a system of signs real reason why. govemed by emotions and not the reasons for each confusions. however. Similarly. . chatted with Charhonnier. there must be tempts now to show that the something all writing has in primary activity of the mind common. needs is mediated by culture The diversity of knowledge is and cannot be conceived something with which L6vi. he does suggest that it IAvi-Strauss reasoned that.. Communication Arandas. In Totemism. more basic to humanity than Every society codes. it is not really possible unconscious level. and. In fact. is the perception of trarily. to say without assembling It used to be thought that several enormous lists. a language. its view of the the mytho-physical order of identity and character of Australian natives may appear things based on their differ. And although L6vi. The reason of nuclear physics." Strauss begins. he says. All so. one named. while tutionalizes. from a violin for reasons other The converse is true: things than those an antique dealer are useful because they are would advance." L6vi-Strauss at. a system of compared with the structures words.ths that tum up when objects: their spheres are a pre-literate society acquires different.

that of are purposely systematized in space. cannot approxi- corresponds to and reflects a mate. enforced calm. only because the quantity of which is another way of saying objects available in an ad- that he has not been able to vanced literate society is acquire as much as we have. The distinction between a are more satisfactory in the so-called primitive and a last analysis because they deal modem culture was described completely with what is by Levi-Strauss to Charbon- present. Of a mechanical system. who One runs through a set of un- is a particle in a vast ocean he varying cycles (a culture can neither fully see nor govemed entirely by rites and .260 REVIEWS almost always the writing comprehend. without yet. but the Eskimo has cause of the disparity in a perfect science of the temperature between its parts. Words are able to mediate-the scientist's first written in inventories. synchrony. diachrony (to get as ours provide testimony that better is to go forward. greater? The documents Thus. in what he calls a station- considering the other de. tax traffic jam-or filter through records-primitive dictionar. and a combustion present to an Eskimo than to engine. whose standards terminism. concepts are not helpful in a catalogues. ary culture. which is primarily a order to ensure perpetual system of relations between equilibrium and a sort of co-present societies. the method of Strauss argues that spatial functioning is just as complex systems-so-called totemic as ours. is to have more). L6vi. a UNESCO Guinea tribesman is inferior pamphlet) that one race or to us because he has not culture is superior to another advanced in time as we have. (L6vi-Strauss asked in Race We believe that a New and History. classifications. for instance. the begins as an instrument of more obscure the overall power that consigns things to scheme. lists of slaves. some efficient decoding appa- ies. This bears on a culture's ratus. like that course. for writing greater our knowledge. which functions be- a Parisian. The rule is that "the scale of values. a great deal less is of a watch. The Parisian is dealing feeling for power and for directly with events he is un- private property." Who can presume to place. we submit our reasoning (which are objects) of history to the determinism of temporal in a cumulative society such succession. as well as "regaining" nier as the difference between time that has been lost. which assures a sense of progress. concrete that the Parisian. the power to classify is say with Gobineau's certainty attested to in writing.

This is a group activi. unanimity. the perfect forms of order are available to model for it. and. temal conflict. Syntax and grammar ty." The detached. and to kinship structures. clan B. on the is to submit to the sequence of other. or the very notion of natu- are more capable of general ral scales. to order. it is link the objects meaningful- ing historical change. On the one hand. or ing the power and unintelligi. it be orderly: to be a system. that it (the system) can events merely by acknowledg. aside from disorder. beyond the conscious and egalitarian. clan C. a a universal human trait. of discrete events. on the other. in nearly every way rather. description than vocabulary is not Beethoven's Third is. One way ly to each other. and yet this He says. The code is of discontinuous particulari. E flat.a system must be systematic. ruled by the and shifting images which men principle of entropy (the hold. Levi-Strauss writes in his Symphony and Wagner's . confronts the world group of objects. like a grid.EDWARD W. and. or language.semble each other. from them bility of history. system of differences is appli- that the one thing man cannot cable to the differences be- bear. to be alone. for example.decoding machine. A primitive. SAID 261 minute laws of behavior). encode. certain societies between to connect. To be systematic means that certain relations between Levi-Strauss is saying that objects and classes of objects there are two ways of dealing must on the one hand appear with and to some extent resist. is musical tonali- the mind. political upheavals main principle of order is that and so on). far less calm grasp. and clan D. and dog. As Levi-Strauss How then does man order? puts it in Totemism: "it is not Since every society has a the resemblances which re- completely different classifi. grid. with its class unconscious possibilities. a bear-are linked by because men are never alone. and explains the correspondence in begins immediately to classify. their differences. the complete range of modern society. This is the ty-L6vi-Strauss never speaks essence of totemism." impossible to explain every The perfect analogy for the particular of every system. in. while Structural Anthropology that the other functions at a greater the anthropologist's "goal is to level of energy. but the cation. one must discover what that I can think of. in Race and History. and be applicable to a similar however. where of an individual-because it is certain animals-an eagle. let us say. is tween clan A.therefore translatable-which ties.and a set of taboos.

marks in the inaugural lecture: and. it is still not adequately described in any easy to accept the proposition but imprecise terms? The same that language. which stand as inter- Strauss believes that the syn. or synchronic. as of symbols and signs. its sheer presence. Peano's arithmetic was an at- it is therefore a language. It is as if the what are we to say of the codes of a society were puns melody as melody? Other than on each other. which is a aspect is essentially harmonic. It is Strauss that these levels are far easier. for IMvi-Strauss calls it. This. it is a "term "men communicate by means in the system" or a species. they are chosen simply in anthropology and primitive because they are available. subject matter. I meaning before they enter the should add. L6vi. and sistently proposes in The the bear have no intrinsic Savage Mind-although. We can parallel each other. he has no interest in or regard through speech. but albeit a different one from the it is a tonality that makes both one spoken. a logic common to them all ing our analysis with a study rather than to a common of the harmonic system." The music plays the controlling very fact that men do com- part. everything is symbols and lodic. the second me. each expresses the guarantees the following re- system of E flat in some way. Harmony and and politics. tention the mind's activity. for melody. he is only doing system. Yet. ngorous logic. One important ground rule is what IAvi-Strauss per- is that the eagle. marriage. Their say and show that Beethoven's systematic character is due to Eroica is in E flat by illustrat. ty of describing history as the can be shown to be based on a succession of events. totemism is a system of signs. can it be Nonetheless. convinces Levi- melody are inextricable. he would argue. psychology what has been done and they acquire systematic in linguistics and mathematics meaning once chosen. though it does not mean municate on many levels. mediaries between two [or chronic or harmonic aspect of more] speaking subjects. If during the last 75 years. and by in- question applies to the difficul. art. signs. for has a double character: on the it is Saussure whose work one hand. on the other. The first anthropology. the dog. draws on the linguistic theory Every note in these two scores of Ferdinand de Saussure. conversation of man with man. tempt to base all the oper- . Here IAvi-Strauss of them intelligible to the ear. however. to codes of exchange (conveying study and define harmony a variety of messages) that than to define melody. or diachronic.262 REVIEWS Prelude to Das Rheingold.

the mind's instinct is terms that make up the field always to "totalize.EDWARD W." to link of the relation. tations-who means a lot to with a duck.. and." Form and everything in sight to this syntax. existing in several the matter. great extent in physical This logic. as I have called science." do that L6vi-Strauss is re- L6vi-Strauss's theory is that markably brilliant. is best expressed in mvths. A sign. S. mytho-logic has the power to lation. Created out objects become terms in the of bits and pieces. sition. let us say. sition-as.. for example. matter basic pattem of "binary oppo- far more than vocabulary. "it is clear that light. as Russell tween high and low. But. Objects therefore L6vi-Strauss-the primitive become signs. Like with relation to objects near Wemmick in Great Expec- them-an eagle. one direction and its the structure of the relation opposite. "is better mathematics in a logic. be- idea of structure that held re. myths are mind's logic at the species superstructures capable of in- level: when they are identified credible metamorphoses. What matters dimensions. later Bertrand Russell-super. in other words. one of of identity is usually one of op- whose central tenets was an position-as. "is something performing a large number of di- which stands to somebody for verse tasks. His universe of instruments . SAID 263 ations of the discipline on Paul Ricoeur that a sign is three primitive axioms and five born during the moment be- primitive rules. he does not subordinate each capacity." so that even in very Russell adds. as C. this "is the primitive Australian tribes one state of our knowledge of notes a fantastic and subtle nature. Frege-and tween sense and non-sense. be- lations together. The "bricoleur" is adept at Peirce had said." he says in ceded Peano and grounded The Savage Mind. says Levi- does not depend upon the Strauss. unlike the engi- something in some respect or neer." In a phrase that of them to the availability of raw echoes Merleau-Ponty (to materials and tools conceived and whom The Savage Mind is procured for the purpose of the dedicated). dark and wrote in 1919. nature of our terms. and to a very ent axes. along many differ- in mathematics.. is not the intrinsic it. "any classification. but. which stand as myth-maker indulges in links between images or "bricolage": percepts and concepts. Lvi-Strauss told project. between facts and ideas. for example. but the and it is in his analyses of what logical nature of their interre." for "we know more logic capable of extraordinary about the form of nature than gradations.

The set of customs. a system that takes names in their place. plants. multiplicity. towards the concrete. and by scrupulous applies his theory to names we attention directed entirely give to pet dogs. as in the case of the grid. that is. L6vi-Strauss most often calls it." distance from the grid increases. that. does no more than project (which would presuppose apply to a rigid and discontinuous besides. and fish can be squander them and destroy them filtered and "come out" in a at the end of every individual ex. But these in all phases of the tnrbe'sex- apparently contradictory attitudes istence. at the other end It might be said that the engineer of the grid. . as a sub-set of the culture. while the of the living.264 REVIEWS is closed and the rules of his game of classification: they are finite and are always to make do with "what. As their materials or "instrumental sets.meaningful synthesis. .. extinguishes the names questions the universe. or structure. there were. . always be filled or are done away ators" but they can be used for any with under the impact of the same operations of the same type. Here is a ceives all of empirical reality passage on the logic of names: and translates what is ad- mitted into ideas of unity. race horses. Through it men... . others dogs. Hence. and a slight shift in its logic engineer. istence. movement which. as many sets of tools and position or another. They [the sets] are either taken by the living as each represent a set of actual and symbols of positions which must possible relations. the bricoleur'sapparatus classification such as is to be is a set of basic "permutation found among primitive people groups" that fabricate the everywhere. to impose a the bricoleur's means cannot structure on the continuous flux of therefore be defined in terms of a generation. They then get rid of them the mythology of the Brazilian by forbidding them and coin other Bororos. at least in is enough to secure this in one theory. they are "oper. each society. The structure's in fact merely express two aspects impulse to totalization derives of a constant property of systems from the logical observation of ."." It re- and tame birds. category. onlybasic tonality. is thus a total system of Thus. or from human endeavors. . last practically for ever. . . The mind that system of names given by creates this is characterized by tribes to flowers and weeds. By its rules and ever is at hand. inflexible in form. over their names and make them and elements. Some societies jealously watch number. as there are different kinds of [the dead] lose their names which projects). . "bricoleur" addresses himself to a collection of oddments left over The grid. . In its "consuming symbolic am- a dazzling manner Lvi-Strauss bition . or operator. .

the physicist's the world of a given ensemble. processes and formulae-into be it that of a historical epoch. and eagle. in not simply a play about which e and m and c are Phaedra or Andromache. of course. is an object of lated event. by extension. or that of a formal whole we spondence to the empirical call Racine.EDWARD W. there can be no order thought rests on the parallel- at all. of which information) and in totemism verbal language is the domi- . Barthes' same predicament. and a meaning. All of Levi-Strauss's no order. verb. the formu. The mind elects the and neolithic culture. of exultation. example. but-as elsewhere assigned to other with all systems-it parallels forms of behaviour. There is no third possi. so simply referential: e = mc2 does that one work by Racine. Rather. since. ani- the mathematician's symbols mating and making intelligible and equations. if there is them). perhaps be. demon- wildness of all meaning. measurable linguistic density. Conversely. the writer blank stare" of a "virgin whose work has provoked the landscape . all netics (the programming of human activity is the creation computers with quantified of sign systems. bear divide the world between where. The technique of cal. in cyber. so monotonous most vehement reaction among as to deprive [even] its academics in France. L6vi-Strauss states pline is amenable to Levi- that modern science faces the Strauss's theories." or syntax. first altemative. whose sphere is total. "language absorbs. SAID 265 the rule of the excluded (the creation of a model in middle: if there is order and which a lion. The literary criticism of cause it cannot tolerate "the Roland Barthes. la belongs to a sign system. "mythology. lays bare the structure of the biologist's lists of species. Like Levi-Strauss. also say that it is polytechni- ture model. reality they describe is formal Barthes considers written and abstract rather than documents as sign systems. In identities that have their Racine's work. though "writing" as an intransitive materially different. It codes its writer's biography. Barthes says. for not account for a specific iso. in a kind The system is highly de. ." strates how still another disci- Boldly. . all the functions veloped. languages whose corre. ism between modem science bility. it must be every." It has become possible miniaturization and codifying for Barthes now to speak of is formally similar. he findings-the chemist's table. one might objective reality like a minia. Instead. place. and it too interest is neither the individu- elects the alternative of order al work nor the individual and meaning.

and are to be read theory of the unconscious." There is no thing-in- regions where form cannot itself to which all structures penetrate as it is with suc. The complexities the universal dictionary of the of history and the turmoil of unconscious. on psychoa. ultimately refer and by which cesses of form. formalists. as it was classificatory grid. even confusion. of the same for all individuals and in human actuality? Both in his all instances where the unconscious reply to Sartre's philosophy at pursues its activity . . myth. The human experi. however. but it is Whereas Freud has grounded merely one among many modes the meaning of our actions in of knowledge." system of language as terms in . et le cuit. . refuse to believe that the un- ence with which literature conscious is any more than a deals is transformed. defined in the tradition of and inevitably. L6vi-Strauss's latest grettably feels. Lvi-Strauss and reality are either capable of Jacques Lacan. Since these laws are mense flux. psychoanalyst who seems in. Sartre's others. In Structural Anthro. for literature out any transcendental is as much concemed with subject. The very touches the mind at every concept of meaning as it is point. returns the same answer: history is fascinating. his system bears acutely. . with- in such criticism. becomes significant. for us and for To all of this. What unconscious structures it according of history? What of human to its laws and thus transforms it action and work. All language and system pology. the vo. the end of The Savage Mind cabulary matters less than the and elsewhere. Ikvi-Strauss structure. ordered like in the work of the Russian a language. only to the extent that the philosophy is opposed. as lines in a gigantic musical ducing it to a "function-the score. If yes. they then enter the fluenced by "structuralism. into a series of The introduction to Le cru linguistic propositions. Westem humanism is itself a nalysis. it is not difficult to symbolic function": understand why Richard Wagner is Levi-Strauss's god. a book. of the im- into language. the preconscious is the individual Music is the distant model of lexicon where each of us accumu. but . or not. re. they can all be reduced to a Because LAvi-Strauss'swork univocal meaning. he reinterprets Freud's are myths. all languages because it is at lates the vocabulary of his personal the same time clearly intelligi- history. correctly defines his corresponding lack of passion philosophy as "Kantian.266 REVIEWS nant one. one re. . an avant-garde linguistic formulation. this vocabulary ble and finally untranslatable.

treating different subject-matter. duced to psycho-chemical It could have been called The processes in the brain of Predatory Mind: it is very everyone who participated in much a book reminding. is whether such an end may be constituting thought: it consti. then they remain the events of 1917. to make the reduction and scribed. independent of any inexplicable. and by it can never have. a myth. and wil it not then language. mind-obsessed book." he says. event in the work of a histori. the reward of only a few gifted tutes the events it describes. Strauss sums his thought up "will never give forth the ring in Le cru et le cuit: of bygone harmonies. history thereby properly to re-create is partially described in the event. object and word. It would. which they become capable of The savage's myth is a fabri. The Savage Mind is a an. Levi-Strauss would require further psycho-chemi- agree. or dialectical. but physics). is radical inauthenticity. as Sartre calls it. One may legitimately wonder thought. ruthless. if not. individuals like Lvi-Strauss Historical actuality. perpetually outside it and however. ethnography. subject. things. he says." accede to the same objectivity. claiming for dialectical systems of truth become mutually reason a priority and veracity convertible into each other. as an ensemble. of reconciling contra. in short. For. more terms of his science. take many lifetimes consequently cannot be de. real discipline. cation. yet it can always be re. acquires the character of an ob- dictions. its grammar. L6vi- "A cracked bell. the other lost forever. even though L6vi. or art. If you say. so rigorous- "the point of departure in any ly in search of its roots may quest for intelligibility. however. rather than a sort of Russian Revolution. of explaining the jective reality. is elevated built-in aspiration within any to the status of a whole. it is quite cal analyses of the researchers' obvious that a description of brains? Objectivity is best dis- the French Revolution and the covered in the rules of any actual event are two different discourse (history. does not. SAID 267 it. and .EDWARD W. yes. rather the description is present when than in its subject matter. sociology. This." Primi- tive thought recognizes man's Having made possible an investi- predicament in a way that gation of the conditions by which Sartre. yet he authentic. spoken. a way of linking dis. is not to say that He has defined objectivity in history is. by definition. leaves open the possibility that Strauss concedes that it is any science. which is ever-changing. Historical. parities. like the himself.

for the possi- the totalitarianism of his ble. and recreation. If he is also a Erich Auerbach argued. or a scientist and grace is to call a halt to it. system is only one tendency of simple or complex. is a Virgilian hymn to chord over Wagner's Ring.Humanism and religion. "linguista sum: Yet. with Roman intemalizing all information. The mind's opposite "an uninvited guest"-as Lvi. and. No longer the mind. language is the ment ne plus ultra. Man's only knowledge. a satanic myth of process creates. which he respects for its all the more real after such a profoundly neutral energies. cultures structure everlastingly being that have submitted to and translated into the language it disappeared in the systematic employs in the operations of study of their souls by Western intelligibility.and peace of body and mind. Like Vico. Levi-Strauss's remarkable linguistici nihil a me alienum moral sense. presiding over all strangely out of place in his activity like the great E-flat system. He is all societies long "for leisure. particularity and diversity. lieve. or what the Marxists are sadly "beyond thought and call praxis. realm of the possible and the Levi-Strauss is aware that intelligible. Jakobson. Ex. Levi- totalitarian anthropologists Strauss is a Faustian gramn. and a super. really all those things. but especially an in. is vision as L6vi-Strauss's. everything is possible. a all over the world. and freedom.268 REVIEWS waming. recog- colossal pun. as rationalist.which seems discourse.nizes the abyss that such a play. The marian of the spoken. To it. Concemring language ation of a gigantic computer he might say. vali- totalitarian." The tenden- fundamental totality for the cy for diversity is also behind sciences of man. cherished particularities that perience. that Lvi-Strauss's frequent lament totality is only apprehended over the recent extinction of as an object of study through many small primitive cultures the structure of the mind." genious scientist. tendency is its appetite for Strauss had once called it." L6vi-Strauss is either a Mann's Doctor Faustus. I be. it is because the date such yeamings. which are mind." Yet. . like that of puto. the mind of its itself the totalitarian instru- powers. and act by which this extinction consequently a grammarian of occurs is not unlike the oper- culture. for philosopher of genius. is clearly "the beneath society. like L6vi-Strauss himself. a fantastic word. the mind is the tonality of all Tristes Tropiques.