Since its first publication in 1979, this book, together with its companion volume, The Palm and the Pleiades by Stephen Hugh-Jones, has become established as 'the most competent and sophisticated ethnography to date of any South American tropical forest people' (The Times Higher Education Supplement). Both are now available for the first time in paperback. The book is an integrated account of a Northwest Amazonian society, which elucidates the structural models that underlie and unify the domains of kinship, religion, politics and economics. These dynamic models are built from a rich corpus of ethnographic data drawn from extensive field research, and are developed in such a way that, as far as possible, they reproduce an Indian theory of society. Besides enhancing anthropological understanding of a fascinating culture area, the book's highly original approach makes it an important contribution to the general theory of social and cultural structures.