apparent senselessness of gifts
But, as the proverb says: "It is not right to give and receive."
would be contradictory desire to be both unlimited and limited; result of this is ridiculous. From the perspective of the overall economy of the gift does not mean anything, there is only a waste for the donor.
What's more, it appears that the latter lost only superficially. Not only has authority over the recipient approach, which has been donated to so act, but in addition the recipient of the gift should destroy this power, rewanżując her gift. The competition forces the return in the form of a gift even greater than that obtained - to fully repay , recipients must not only liberate, but you also impose "the power of the gift" to his rival. In this sense, the gifts should be handed to allowance. Thus, the gift is the opposite of what it seemed: to give obviously means that you lose, but as you see loss of benefits to those who suffered it.
In fact, this aspect of the ridicule zakrawającej contradictions inherent in the potlatch , is misleading. First donor bear apparent profit from the difference between his gifts ofiarowanymi and those, which in turn receives. Only those who gives, has the feeling that they are buying - the power - and that wins. For, as I said, in essence, the ideal would be if it was impossible to draw potlatch. advantage is not in any way connected with the profit motive. On the contrary, it encourages the acquisition - and forced - to him to give more, because the need is to be released from the obligations arising from the receipt of the gift.
[Georges Bataille, Part Cursed, Economy-made universe. Limit useful, crowd. Krzysztof Jarosz, Wydawnictwo KR, Warszawa 2002, p. 1979-1980].