The University of Wisconsin Press
Latin America / Travel / Women's Studies / Anthropology
Into the Hearts of the Amazons
In Search of a Modern Matriarchy
A provocative travel narrative about one of the world's few matriarchal societies
Into the Hearts of the Amazons is part enthralling travel adventure through a little-known world and part popular ethnography, exploring how Zapotec women earned their legendary status in a remote corner of southern Mexico. To satisfy his curiosity about this culture, Tom DeMott journeyed to the Isthmus of Tehuantepec, where he discovered a thriving modern-day matriarchy among the people of the Isthmusa cultural crossroads, breeding ground for rebels, and home to a half-million Zapotecs. DeMott integrated himself into the culture by joining in the rites of spring (where women pelt the men with fruit); by interviewing the women who control the marketplace where men are rarely seen; and by honoring the saints with drink and dance at all-night ceremonies. Evoking these singular women and their culture, DeMott tackles a primal question: What would life be like if women, rather than men, had the advantage?
"For centuries the Isthmus of Tehuantepec, like a magnet, has attracted travelers, adventurers, scholars, romantics, and rebels. Something about Oaxaca and the Zapotec culture appeals to the curious and restless. DeMott's fine memoir captures the spirit of this quest. It will be of interest to anthropologists and general readers alike."Howard Campbell, author of Zapotec Struggles
"Driven by an unquenchable personal passion for his subject, Tom DeMott has produced an exceptional narrative that deconstructs the cliches of a Mexican region and a people shrouded in romance and myth. Acutely observed, richly experienced, Into the Hearts of the Amazons exposes issues of matriarchy and culture through intimate, often bizarre, and surreal yet indelibly moving close encounters with the people of Juchitán and Tehuantepec."Tony Cohan, author of On Mexican Time and Mexican Days
"A perfectly balanced blend of first-person narrative, anecdote, and research on the region."Brian Bouldrey, editor of Traveling Souls: Contemporary Pilgrimage Stories
For more information regarding publicity and reviews contact our publicity manager, Chris Caldwell, phone: (608) 263-0734, email: email@example.com
There is a press kit available for Tom DeMott's book.For additional information, see Tom DeMott's Web site at tomdemott.com
Of related interest
The Purple Land
W. H. Hudson
With a new introduction by Ilan Stavans
Illustrated by Keith Henderson
ISBN 0-299-18224-X Paper
The Americas series
272 pp. 6 x 9
Cloth $26.95 t
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