Illinois State Library

Illinois Center for the Book


Individual Author Record

General Information

Name:  Jonathan D. Hill  

Pen Name: None

Genre: Fiction

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Illinois Connection

Jonathan D. Hill is a professor in the Department of Anthropology at Southern Illinois University and the author of Keepers of the Sacred Chants: The Poetics of Ritual Power in an Amazonian Society.

Biographical and Professional Information


Published Works Expand for more information


Titles At Your Library

Made from Bone: Trickster Myths, Music, and History from the Amazon (Interp Culture New Millennium)
ISBN: 0252033736

University of Illinois Press. 2008

Made-from-Bone provides the first complete set of English translations of narratives about the mythic past and its transformations from the indigenous Arawak-speaking Wakuénai of southernmost Venezuela. The central character throughout these primordial times is a trickster-creator, Made-from-Bone, who survives a prolonged series of life-threatening attacks. Carefully recorded and transcribed by Jonathan D. Hill, these narratives offer scholars of South America and other areas the only ethnographically generated cosmogony of contemporary or ancient native peoples of South America.

Keepers of the Sacred Chants: The Poetics of Ritual Power in an Amazonian Society
ISBN: 0816511357

University of Arizona Press. 1993

The Wakuenai of the upper Rio Negro region in southern Venezuela employ a form of singing called malikai for ceremonies of childbirth, initiation, and healing. This ritual chanting is a rich amalgam of myth and music, and serves as a means of integrating individuals into a vertical hierarchy of power relations between mythic ancestors and human descendants. Jonathan Hill here shows how the musical and semantic transformations of everyday discourse in malikai integrate the everyday world into a poetic process of empowerment.


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