Cultural Intimacy

Author: Michael Herzfeld
Publisher: Routledge
ISBN: 1317297547
Format: PDF, ePub
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In the third edition of this important and influential book, Michael Herzfeld revisits the idea of ‘cultural intimacy’. The chapters examine a range of topics touching on the relationship between state and citizen, and the notion of ‘national character’. Herzfeld provides a developed theoretical framework and additional clarification of core concepts such as disemia, social poetics and structural nostalgia. The text has been fully updated in light of recent scholarship and events, including comment on Greece and the European Union. There is new material drawn from regions such as Thailand and China, and further consideration of religious intimacy and its impact on cities. The book improves our understanding of how states, societies and institutions function and illustrates the relevance of anthropology to contemporary issues such as globalization, censorship, ethnic conflict and nationalism.

Mirror for Man

Author: Clyde Kluckhohn
Publisher: Routledge
ISBN: 1351606158
Format: PDF, Mobi
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While the world has undoubtedly been shrinking, at the same time it has grown more complex. The likelihood of culture clashes leading to outright conflict is high, perhaps higher than ever. As Andrea L. Smith convincingly argues in her new introduction to this classic work, certain questions are as valid today as in 1949, when Mirror for Man was first published. Can anthropology break down prejudices that exist between peoples and nations? Can knowledge of past human behavior help solve the world’s modern problems? What effect will American attitudes likely have on the future of the world? In Mirror for Man, Clyde Kluckhohn scrutinizes anthropology, showing how the discipline can contribute to the reconciliation of conflicting cultures. He questions age-old race theories, shows how people came to be as they are, and examines limitations in how human beings can be molded. Taking up one of the most vital questions in the post-World War II world, whether international order can be achieved by domination, Kluckhohn demonstrates that cultural clashes drive much of the world’s conflict, and shows how we can help resolve it if only we are willing to work for joint understanding. By interpreting human behavior, Kluckhohn reveals that anthropology can make a practical contribution through its predictive power in the realm of politics, social attitudes, and group psychology. Andrea L. Smith’s new introduction provides convincing evidence for the continuing importance of one of the earliest “public intellectuals.”

Evolution and Social Life

Author: Tim Ingold
Publisher: Routledge
ISBN: 1317198123
Format: PDF, ePub, Docs
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Evolution is among the most central and most contested of ideas in the history of anthropology. This book charts the fortunes of the idea from the mid-nineteenth century to recent times. By comparing biological, historical, and anthropological approaches to the study of human culture and social life, it lays the foundation for their effective synthesis. Far ahead of its time when first published, the book anticipates debates at the forefront of contemporary thinking. Revisiting the work after almost thirty years, Tim Ingold offers a substantial new preface that describes how the book came to be written, how it was received and its bearing on later developments. Unique in scope and breadth of theoretical vision, Evolution and Social Life cuts across the boundaries of natural science and the humanities to provide a major contribution both to the history of anthropological and social thought, and to contemporary debate on the relationship between human nature, culture, and social life.

The Reinvention of Primitive Society

Author: Adam Kuper
Publisher: Taylor & Francis
ISBN: 1351852973
Format: PDF, ePub, Mobi
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Adam Kuper’s iconoclastic intellectual history argues that the idea of “primitive society” is a western myth. The “primitive” is imagined as the opposite of the “civilised”. But this is a protean myth. As ideas about civilisation change, so the image of primitive society must be adjusted. By way of fascinating account of classic texts in anthropology, ancient history and law, Kuper reveals how this myth underpinned academic research and inspired political programmes. Its ancestry is traced back to classical western beliefs about barbarians and savages, and Kuper also tackles the latest version of the myth, the idea of a global identity of “indigenous peoples”. The Reinvention of Primitive Society is a key text in the history of anthropology, and will interest anyone who has puzzled about the very idea of “primitive society” – and so, by implication, about “civilisation”.

Singing a Hindu Nation

Author: Anna Schultz
Publisher: Oxford University Press
ISBN: 0199730830
Format: PDF
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Singing a Hindu Nation is a study of rāgsgtrīya kīrtan, a western Indian performance medium that combines song, Hindu philosophical discourse, and nationalist storytelling. Author Anna Schultz demonstrates how, through this particular form of musical performance, the political becomes devotional, and explores why it motivates people to action and violence.

Key Debates in Anthropology

Author: Tim Ingold
Publisher: Routledge
ISBN: 1134748833
Format: PDF, Mobi
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Every year, leading social anthropologists meet to debate a motion at the heart of current theoretical developments in their subject and this book includes the first six of these debates, spanning the period from 1988 to 1993. Each debate has four principal speakers: one to propose the motion, another to oppose it, and two seconders. The first debate addresses the disciplinary character of social anthropology: can it be regarded as a science, and if so, is it able to establish general propositions about human culture and social life? The second examines the concept of society, and in the third debate the spotlight is turned on the role of culture in people's perception of their environments. The fourth debate focuses on the place of language in the formation of culture. The fifth takes up the question of how we view the past in relation to the present. Finally, in the sixth debate, the concern is with the cross-cultural applicability of the concept of aesthetics. With its unique debate format, Key Debates in Anthropology addresses issues that are currently at the top of the theoretical agenda, which register the pulse of contemporary thinking in social anthropology. It will be of value to students who are not only introduced to the different sides of every argument, but are challenged to join in and to develop informed positions of their own.

In Search of the Primitive

Author: Stanley Diamond
Publisher: Taylor & Francis
ISBN: 1351615459
Format: PDF, Kindle
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Anthropology is a kind of debate between human possibilities-a dialectical movement between the anthropologist as a modern man and the primitive peoples he studies. In Search of the Primitive is a tough-minded book containing chapters ranging from encounters in the field to essays on the nature of law, schizophrenia and civilization, and the evolution of the work of Claude Levi-Strauss. Above all it is reflective and self-critical, critical of the discipline of anthropology and of the civilization that produced that discipline. Diamond views the anthropologist who refuses to become a searching critic of his own civilizations as not merely irresponsible, but a tool of Western civilization. He rejects the associations which have been made in the ideology of our civilization, consciously or unconsciously, between Western dominance and progress, imperialism and evolution, evolution and progress.

Nature and Society

Author: Philippe Descola
Publisher: Routledge
ISBN: 1134827156
Format: PDF, ePub, Mobi
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The contributors to this book focus on the relationship between nature and society from a variety of theoretical and ethnographic perspectives. Their work draws upon recent developments in social theory, biology, ethnobiology, epistemology, sociology of science, and a wide array of ethnographic case studies -- from Amazonia, the Solomon Islands, Malaysia, the Mollucan Islands, rural comunities from Japan and north-west Europe, urban Greece, and laboratories of molecular biology and high-energy physics. The discussion is divided into three parts, emphasising the problems posed by the nature-culture dualism, some misguided attempts to respond to these problems, and potential avenues out of the current dilemmas of ecological discourse.

The Ethnopoetics of Space and Transformation

Author: Professor Stuart C Aitken
Publisher: Ashgate Publishing, Ltd.
ISBN: 1472400003
Format: PDF, ePub, Docs
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Change is inevitable, we are told. A job is lost, a couple falls in love, children leave home, an addict joins Narcotics Anonymous, two nations go to war, a family member's health deteriorates, a baby is born, a universal health care bill is voted into law. Life comprises events over which we have considerable, partial, or little or no control. The distance between the event and our daily lives suggests a quirky spatial politics. Our lives move forward depending upon how events play out in concert with our reactions to them. Drawing on nearly three decades of geographic projects that involve ethnographies and interviews with, and stories about, young people in North and South American, Europe and Asia and using the innovative technique of ethnopoetry, Aitken examines key life-changing events to look at the interconnections between space, politics, change and emotions. Analysing the intricate spatial complexities of these events, he explores the emotions that undergird the ways change takes place, and the perplexing spatial politics that almost always accompany transformations. Aitken positions young people as effective agents of change without romanticizing their political involvement as fantasy and unrealistic dreaming. Going further, he suggests that it is the emotional palpability of youth engagement and activism that makes it so potent and productive. Pulling on the spatial theories of de Certeau, Deleuze, Massey, Agamben, Rancière, Žižek and Grosz amongst others, Aitken argues that spaces are transformative to the degree that they open the political and he highlights the complexly interwoven political, economic, social and cultural practices that simultaneously embed and embolden people in places. If we think of spaces as events and events encourage change, then spaces and people become other through complex relations. Taking poetry to be an emotive construction of language, Aitken re-visualizes, contorts and arranges people's words and gestures to express the importance of emotions as they affect the way we sense the past, present and future, and help us negotiate events.

Mimesis and Alterity

Author: Michael Taussig
Publisher: Routledge
ISBN: 1351853864
Format: PDF, Kindle
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In this ambitious and accomplished work, Taussig explores the complex and interwoven concepts of mimesis, the practice of imitation, and alterity, the opposition of Self and Other. The book moves from the nineteenth-century invention of mimetically capacious machines, such as the camera, to the fable of colonial ‘first contact’ and the alleged mimetic power of ‘primitives’. Twenty years after the original publication, Taussig revisits the work in a new preface which contextualises the impact of Mimesis and Alterity. Drawing on the ideas of Benjamin, Adorno and Horckheimer and ethnographic accounts of the Cuna, Taussig demonstrates how the history of mimesis is deeply tied to colonialism and the idea of alterity has become increasingly unstable. Vigorous and unorthodox, this cross-cultural discussion continues to deepen our understanding of the relationship between ethnography, racism and society.