Cool Tobacco, Sweet Coca
Teachings of an Indian Sage from the Colombian Amazon

By Hipolito Candre Translated by Juan Alvaro Echeverri

Cool Tobacco, Sweet Coca
Paperback, 292 pages £11.95
Published: 1st March 1996
ISBN: 9780952730217
Format: 234mm x 156mm


Cool Tobacco, Sweet Coca is a first-hand account by Hipolito Cadre, an Indian healer from the Colombian Amazon. Translated from the Uitoto language and commented on by the anthropologist Juan Alvaro Echeverri, it contains a selection of Kinerai's narratives, transcribed from numerous tape-recordings, presented in both Uitoto and English. In order to convey the spirit and power of his words, Kinerai's teachings have been rendered in a highly poetic style. He describes how we were formed by the "Word of tobacco and coca", the Word of life, and talks of the Planter of the True Seed, the Word of strength, the Word on discipline, the Invocation for the pregnant mother, the tasks of the mother and the father, and the care of children. He also relates traditional narratives, including the Dreams of Abundance and the story of the giant armadillo. The Spanish-language edition of this book was awarded the National Prize for Indian Literature in Colombia in 1993. Published in association with the COAMA Programme, Colombia and The Gaia Foundation, London.

"What comes across so well in this book, perhaps better than in any other, are the crucial moral and ethical dimensions of what to most would seem to be merely ordinary practical activities. Through such 'Words of life', a genre found throughout the north-western Amazonia, peoples such as the Uitoto convert the practice of livving into a true art of life in which ethics and aesthetics are conjoined ... This book steers a fine course between the exotic and the everyday, bring them together in a powerful synthesis." - Dr Stephen Hugh-Jones, University of Cambridge

Hipolito Candre

Kinerai is the name, in Uitoto language, of Hipolito Candre. He is of the Okaina race but has lived most of his life among speakers of Uitoto. He is an Indian healer from the Colombian Amazon and his teachings recounted in this book, have been translated by Juan Alvaro Echeverri.

Publication Details:

Binding: Paperback, 292 pages
ISBN: 9780952730217
Format: 234mm x 156mm
65 b&w photographs and line drawings

BISAC Code:  OCC000000, REL000000, REL029000, SOC002010, SOC011000
Imprint: Themis Books

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