DER Documentary

Yanomamö: A Multidisciplinary Study

launch preview watch a preview

From the Yanomamö series
by Timothy Asch and Napoleon Chagnon
color, 45 min, 1968

NEW! Institutional Streaming Options:

I have read and agree to the Terms & Conditions

Non-profit, K-12, and Individual pricing also available
See pricing information and conditions

This film illustrates the field techniques used by a multidisciplinary team of researchers from the University of Michigan in collaboration with their Venezuelan colleagues. The expedition shown here included specialists in human genetics, serology, epidemiology, demography, dentistry, physical and cultural anthropology, and linguistics.

The film describes the team's objectives — to understand the Yanomamo population structure in genetic and social terms — and the methods used in obtaining data. It touches upon medical problems already apparent in 1968, such as the high death rate from recently introduced measles, to which the Yanomamo had no previous immunity. Insight is provided into the peculiarities of the relationship between the scientists and their subjects: the scientists collect blood specimens, photograph anomalous teeth, and stir human stool samples around in little jars, much to the bewilderment and amusement of the Yanomamo.

The film also includes a brief sketch of Yanomamo culture and society.

Film Festivals, Screenings, Awards
CINE Golden Eagle
American Film Festival Red Ribbon
Festival dei Popoli, Florence, Italy
Sydney Film Festival, Australia
National Educational Film Festival
International Festival of Scientific Films, Rio De Janeiro
4th International Congress of Human Genetics, Paris
International Educational Film Festival, Teheran

Other films in the Yanomamö series:
Arrow Game
The Ax Fight
Bride Service
Children's Magical Death
Climbing the Peach Palm
A Father Washes His Children
The Feast
Jaguar, a Yanomamo Twin Cycle Myth
Magical Death
A Man and His Wife Make a Hammock
A Man Called Bee: Studying the Yanomamo
Moonblood: A Yanomamo Creation Myth
Myth of Naro, as told by Dedeheiwä
Myth of Naro, as told by Kaobawä
New Tribes Mission
Ocamo is My Town
Tapir Distribution
Tug-of-War, Yanomamo
Weeding the Garden
Yanomamö of the Orinoco

Catalog of New Films DER new films catalog cover
Join Our Mailing List
Suport DER
Supported By Massachusetts Cultural Council National Endowment for the Humanities National Endowment for the Arts