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Does Kinaalda Ritual Have Lasting Impact on Person's Identity - Essay Example

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Does Kinaalda Ritual Have Lasting Impact on Person's Identity

Today the ritual is fulfilled as in former times.
Kinaalda is a rite of passage, any ritual or ceremony connected with the change of social status of the person or group of people, for example, burial, knighting, initiation, christening (in particular, fighting), etc. In this particular case a girl is initiated into the world of women. Rites of passage are not just ceremonies of moving from one approved state to the next but sometimes happened for attained statutes. As Keith (1964) described: "Kinaalda is a summary, or way of giving meaning to skills and values learned gradually in childhood". (p.35)
In many collective cultures teenage years is a time to undertake appropriate social roles that are often related to tasks to family, kin, or tribe. Obviously, we described a ceremony that stand for attribution of a social identity unfolding that strengthens the vital feminine gender position in matrilineal way of life. The young woman takes part in rituals that make an impact on her role modelling (Changing women) who reflects the understanding of Navajo womanhood. It is the well-off expressiveness of rituals that induce improvement toward finest identity being a very exact ascription of a female identity. (Markstrom and Iborra 2003 p.418-419)
The Changing woman was born by miracle and 4 d...
Modelling of a body was a one of the most important parts of the ceremony. They say, that during this first ritual Kinaalda the changing woman herself modelled her body. It was done in order to honour the Sun and the Moon. The changing woman was "modelled" and got the perfect form.
According to Markstrom and Iborra (2003), "the transition from preparation to separation and beginning of the rite of passage can be understood in psychological terms".(p. 412) It is shown in Erikson's (1968) statement: "Identity formation begins where the usefulness of identification ends" (p. 159). The ritual transformed the nature of social attitudes. In Kinaalda the young woman is not considered to be a child by the adult society but to be a full member. Therefore, the confirmation of her new position is of great importance. Those concerns that can appear again because of obtaining the liberty of this new position and new identity, but not yet having mastering role, are maybe facilitated by the new holding up of the group. As well it is accepted that girl in Kinaalda is beginning her way to adulthood and her family is expected to lead and direct her.
Identify support happens during the next four days after the ritual in which the girl is to have some rest and reveal experiences. Such a break was compared to the rest on the seventh day in the Christianity. Identify reinforcement is shown in the act of giving the rinse water used in the ceremonial hair washing to the mother of the girl who took part in the ceremony. She is to pour it near their house so that her daughter would be drawn to home for all her life.
The important issue to touch upon is the possible temporal effect of the ritual. It must not be forgotten that outcomes leading to the best identity shape ...Show more


In the tribe Navajo there is a ceremony of initiation which is called Kinaalda. At Apaches similar ritual is referred to as "A dance of rising sun". It is a complex ritual which allows to celebrate the beginning of menstrual cycle of a girl. Her transition to the stage of sexual maturity is declared to all tribe and is celebrated by a bright and magnificent ceremony that lasts four days and nights.
Author : emmykshlerin
Does Kinaalda Ritual Have Lasting Impact on Persons Identity
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