Hau (sociology)

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Hau is a notion made popular by the French anthropologist Marcel Mauss in his 1925 book The Gift.[1] Surveying the practice of gifting, he came to the conclusion that it involved belief in a force binding the receiver and giver. The term 'Hau', used by Māori, became a paradigmatic example for such a view.[2] Writing at the turn of the century[when?], Mauss relied on limited sources but his analysis has been expanded and refined.[3]


  1. ^ Mauss M., The gift; forms and functions of exchange in archaic societies, Translated by Ian Gunnison with an Introduction by . E. Evans-Pritchard, London: Cohen and West, 1966: Internet Archive
  2. ^ MacCormack G., Mauss and the 'Spirit'of the Gift, Oceania, Vol. 52, No. 4, Jun., 1982 p.286 Jstor
  3. ^ Maurice Godelier, The enigma of the gift. University of Chicago Press, 1999.

See also[edit]

Gift economy