Etic and Emic Events

Etic and Emic Events



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Fafafini are males yet they are raised and regarded as females in the Samoan society. The Fafafini execute some significant functions in their community and because work role in the society is gender based, the Fafafini usually do activities that are meant for females. They usually do domestic chores and other activities that cannot be performed by females because they are physically stronger than females (Schmidt, 2001). Moreover, the Fafafini normally have sexual relationship with men and the relationship is regarded as heterosexual. The view of the relationship between the Fafafini and males is an emic view from the Samoan community perspective whereas the view of the relationship as homosexual is an etic perspective from Westerners who only know of two culturally constructed genders, male and female.


Is a condition that was studied by EdwardFoulks in 1972 and is experienced by Inuits. This condition is called Arctic Hysteria and some of the symptoms include manic episode where an individuals may remove their clothing, run around wildly into water, or roll around the snow as they make nonsense sound s or speak uncontrollably. According to Adler (1995), Foulks argued that surfers of the condition also have conditions that may be diagnosed in Western culture including schizophrenia although none of the conditions corresponds to western diagnosis. Although the western people also experience similar symptoms, the diagnosis differs hence prompting Foulk to conclude that there must be a cultural component to the disorder (Adler, 1995). He considered the culture separately to understand the cause of Arctic Hysteria and resolved that the cause could be social pressures and severe and current ear infections.


Adler, L. L. (1995). Spirit versus Scalpel: Traditional Healing and Modern Psychotherapy. Westport, Conn. [u.a.: Bergin & Garvey.

Schmidt, J. (2001). “Redefining Fa’afafine: Western Discourses and the Construction of Transgenderism in Samoa.” Journal of the Polynesian Society, 86, 157–182.

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