Download e-book for iPad: Anthropology through the Looking-Glass: Critical Ethnography by Michael Herzfeld

By Michael Herzfeld

ISBN-10: 0521389089

ISBN-13: 9780521389082

Utilizing Greek ethnography as a replicate for an ethnography of anthropology itself, this ebook finds the ways that the self-discipline of anthropology is ensnared within the similar political and social symbolism as its item of research. the writer pushes the comparative ambitions of anthropology past the normal separation of tribal item from indifferent medical observer, and provides the self-discipline a serious resource of reflexive perception in keeping with empirical ethnography instead of on ideological hypothesis by myself.

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Additional info for Anthropology through the Looking-Glass: Critical Ethnography in the Margins of Europe

Example text

What, too, is one to make of frequent affirmations that Greece has "lost the light" to "Europe"? While it is true that most anthropologists do not voluntarily share these attitudes, the countries from which the discipline largely originates represent the origins of the stereotypes as well. One of the most characteristic traits that the Greeks deny in themselves, but attribute to others more "oriental" than themselves, is that of fatalism. As ordinarily understood, this term means passive and total resignation to future events.

1 Prominent among these is the theologically derived metaphor of a fall from cultural grace. This metaphor is familiar from the anthropology of the mid-Victorian period, which had inherited from its medieval and Renaissance theological roots the image of a humanity struggling toward ultimate redemption from the consequences of original sin. Whether the so-called savages of this world were corrupt backsliders from the great evolutionary destiny, or were simply retarded in progress toward it, the imagery remained firmly judgmental.

2 A secular cosmology Rules and imperfections: some comparisons The tension between idealized Greek culture and the direct experience of Greek social life provides an instructive parallel with some of the fundamental symbolic oppositions of anthropological discourse. 1 Prominent among these is the theologically derived metaphor of a fall from cultural grace. This metaphor is familiar from the anthropology of the mid-Victorian period, which had inherited from its medieval and Renaissance theological roots the image of a humanity struggling toward ultimate redemption from the consequences of original sin.

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Anthropology through the Looking-Glass: Critical Ethnography in the Margins of Europe by Michael Herzfeld


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