Hutterites And Zuni The Hutterites and The Zuni The Hutterites Often confused for Amish countrymen these people practice a similar way of life. However the Hutterites, unlike the Amish embrace some yet few creature comforts. Of these are electricity and gas powered machinery such as trucks and tractors. The Hutterites originated during the Protestant Reformation in the sixteenth century and are one of the three surviving Anabaptist groups. (Hostetler, 1) Their beliefs hold that man is evil and “fallen” from the grace of God. The harmony of nature is deterministic and man stands outside this harmony because of the Genesis account of original sin.
The Hutterites exist and a pseudo-egalitarian manner. They are communal yet deal with a market economy. This market economy is yet based on a fundamental principle of positive reciprocity. Profit is strictly viewed as sin. Fair trade is upheld in all exchanges.
Most of what is traded is done so between colonies. Which gives rise for marital prospects between them. These trades are done is hope of redistribution of geographically scarce resources. The Hutterites live in the northern Midwest states and the central southern provinces of Canada. They speak the original tongue of their ancestors, which is German and hold fast to their customs of an agricultural society.
Their geographic location provides rich soils for crop raising and virgin land is excellent grazing field for cattle. Livestock is used as a food source, often traded, or bought depending on the economical need of the colony. Their agricultural needs are met by the use of natural fertilizers, a formidable workforce consisting of men age 15 and older, and by use of modern farming machines, that only unmarried men are allowed to use. Smaller tools for harvesting and processing are still made and used communally. Every person capable of working is expected to perform work assigned to him or her.
Work patterns are clearly marked with age and sex distinctions and by formal authority patterns enforced through informal means. Men are more directly engaged in the income producing phases of the colony, while the women are assigned to family, domestic, and food preparation tasks. With the exception of these positions, work roles [communal] for women rotate, with the change over taking place on Sunday night. (Hostetler, 31) This overall efficient use of labor groups despite sexist argument results from strong adherence to tradition. Work is considered important, not in terms of individualistic conceptions of time, money, or man-hours, but as means of communal living. The distribution patterns reflect colony conceptions of impartiality and equality in sharing.
The amount and kinds of goods are determined by the rules of the council, a grouping of the elders. Although the society is communal and modern in its technology and productive features, its adherence to religious authority prevents a distributive economy based on material wants. The Hutterites are not only communal in production, but also in their consumption and distribution. Food is consumed in a communal setting. Clothing and most needs of the individual are distributed through the resident household.
A communal corporation for the welfare of the colony and its constituents holds any profits made from outside commerce with the outside world. Patterns of reciprocity between individuals and families are made possible through monthly allowances to individuals from the colony. Kinship is especially relevant in the exchange of gifts, favors, and work substitutions. The Hutterite view of property forbids merchandising or profiteering from inter-colonial trade of goods. This inter-colonial trade is fundamental for redistribution of resources and inter-colonial relationships, including marriages.
After Baptism, women are eligible for courtship, which is done mostly secretively and solely known by the couples parents. This courtship lasts from two to six years, where in this time the prospective mates may only see each other once a year, depending on truck transportation and trading needs of the colony. When a man wishes to marry and a significant courtship has preceded the man may ask his father’s permission to marry. In which upon his consent the man must ask his preacher for permission. The preacher in turn asks for consent from the council.
After the announcement of the council for permission the man must be accompanied by his father and grandfather to the would be bride’s colony on a Wednesday. Upon arrival, permission from the brides preacher and council allows the groom to request the brides hand in marriage. When acceptance is granted everyone of church age accompanies them to the ceremony the same day. The ceremony lasts fifteen minutes and the bride and groom’s parents retire to the brides house for celebration; this celebration is called a “hulba”. Thursday the “hulba” is continued and on Friday the bride, groom, father and grandfather return to their colony.
The newlyweds will live with the groom’s parents in the groom’s room, which is no longer referred to as his room but “her” room. In a new environment, the bride is familiar with only one aspect of her new life. She need only memorize who is who and their relative social significance. The political structure of the Hutterites is based mostly on informal age groups: birth to two years, kindergarten (three to five), school children (six to fourteen), young people (fifteen to baptism). To the Hutterites baptism is one of two life rites of passage, the other that of death.
Socialization during childhood is a preparation for initiation into adulthood. (Hostetler, 57) This socialization occurs through age groups or levels of institutionalized education. These levels are respectively: Klein-Schul (kindergarten), Gross-Schul (German school), Suntag-Schul (Sunday school), and Gebet (daily evening sermons). Gender and obedience are taught through patriarchal sexual constraints in work, school, and prayer. Corporal public punishment and general fear of social ostracization reinforce these. However all social control in the Hutterites is derived primarily from their religion.
All laws and social mores governed by their collective interpretations of the bible. Sundays are strictly reserved for prayer, and service is held nightly at the end of the workday. The colony (those of church age, 15 and older) sits on wood benches and the council sits to the side of the preacher facing the audience. Seating is organized by sex and age; men on one side, women on the other. .
An analysis of the Hutterite church service can function to highlight characteristics of their pattern of life. (Hostetler, 34) There is no real tangible church. Service is held in an unimportant and inornate schoolhouse. Sacred space is not confined to one room or one building (Hostetler, 34), rather all of which God respects can be a place of worship. Service is restful and unhurried; the hymns are sung slow and with emotion of a people that take God’s worship seriously and soulfully. The service makes visible the authority pattern of the community and the emphasis of its supernatural right.
Service is used also as instruction in their discipline, faith, history, and their reason for existence. Even the post service communal meal serves as a symbol of “breaking bread with one another.” The church service reinforces the basic patterns of Hutterite life and simultaneously gives relief and depth to daily work. (Hostetler, 36) The peaceable meetings of service and post communal meal set the night for pleasant discussion and debate for new expansions or group projects. Any grievances are sought to be extinguished through passive group discussion with the preacher and council as authoritative figures whose words are carefully sought and respected. Aggression is all but non-existent. Children are enculturized to handle anger, frustration, and violent thought stoically.
They tend not to harbor long term grievances and hold council decisions as if ordained by God himself. This lack of aggression is not from blind obedience or fear of lawful repercussion, for the Hutterites have an informal law doctrine. Obedience comes from a mixture of tradition, respect, and intimidation. Gossip and side-talk form an elaborate and intangible social adherence to the rules and decisions of the elders. The pattern of socialization is remarkably consistent from one colony to the next, from one family to the next, and from one individual to the next. The system is sufficiently flexible and rewarding that an unusually high rate of success occurs, and deviancy is rare.
The Hutterites regard themselves as Christians maintaining the proper social order and not as a rationalized experiment in communal living. (Hostetler, 93) The continual existence of the society is secondary only to God. The Hutterite is raised and lives in a social pattern that is believed to be divinely ordained, apart from any cause and effect relationship. He exists in the service and obedience of God’s word integrating economic and spiritual values into a community of absolutist ideology without compromise. The Zuni The Zuni Mountains rise from the jagged and ruptured plains of New Mexico, hundreds of feet high, rock-strewn by wind, sand and water.
The wild canyons, painted sandstone mesas, red-banded cliffs, and the solitary buttes of rock all interposed by pinon and cedar best characterize these mountains. The Zuni Mountains and surrounding region is a harsh desert environment, visited seasonally by floods, droughts, raging sandstorms, and intensely hot and dry summers. Below and beyond these mountains, in the nearly waterless wilderness lives the American Indian tribe of Zuni. The Zuni people have made many adaptations to survive the harsh seasons. Similar to cliff-dwellings, Zuni domiciles are long, boxed ranches of adobe, crisscrossed in squares, piled up and receding from the one below to form a massive pyramid resembling a broken flight of stairs (Cushing, 48). The structure is a honeycomb hill of mud connected by ladders, rafters, chimneys, and irregular fences enclosing gardens.
The adobe buildings offer the Zuni protection from the elements. The adobe clay is unscathed when the strong winds begin to blow across the desert and raise red clouds of scouring sand into the air. The clay fences provide barriers for their precious gardens from winds that would otherwise destroy the crops. Livestock is housed in adobe corrals, giving the animals shade. Cool in the summer, the buildings are also easy to heat when temperatures plummet.
Before the American Government changed it, the Zuni were practicing a system of floodwater irrigation over a w …