From Generative Anthropology

Sparagmos is an anthropological term used to refer to the consumption of the ritual object. For Eric Gans, it is a “moment” upon the originary scene, following the initial emission of the originary sign, and then followed by the proto-ritualistic reciprocal acknowledgement of the new group, mediated by the sign. Gans has spoken of the sparagmos in terms of the release of the resentment generated by the orignary scene—the violence suppressed there is “unleashed” upon the object, implying that the consumption following the creation of the sign is in a sense more violent than the more animalistic form of consumption would have been. Katz adds that the sparagmos must also be where the sign is rehearsed and refined as it is used as a way of preventing the sparagmatic violence from becoming “excessive” and undoing the work of the sign.

The only thing preventing each member from overreaching his bounds and turning on his fellows is the sign itself, which we can imagine working within the sparagmos as a kind of reminder of the collective limits making this peaceful consumption possible. Following the sparagmos, as the members of the community face each other over the remains of their victim/meal/deity, the sign would be issued once again, this time pointing to the remainders and mementos of the sacred being, marking the first ritual.