Children in the Taiwanese fishing community of Angang have their attention drawn, consciously and unconsciously, to various forms of identification through their participation in schooling, family life and popular religion. They read texts about 'virtuous mothers', share 'meaningful foods' with other villagers, visit the altars of 'divining children' and participate in 'dangerous' god-strengthening rituals. In particular they learn about the family-based cycle of reciprocity, and the tension between this and commitment to the nation. Charles Stafford's 1995 study of childhood in this community (with additional material from north-eastern mainland China) explores absorbing issues related to nurturance, education, family, kinship and society in its analysis of how children learn, or do not learn, to identify themselves as both familial and Chinese.
Rapid industrialization, urbanization, and marketization have led to startling social changes in reform-era China. Mindful of the many forms of social theory that relate modernity to individualism, this volume addresses social and cultural change through the lens of psychological anthropology. The contributors explore Chinese modernity through the psychosocial contradictions experienced by artists, dancers, and poets; by mothers and daughters; by school children and migrant workers; the mentally ill, and others. As a whole, the book provides a disturbing but hopeful portrait of Chinese society, an opportunity to rethink the significance of the concept of modernity, and a vivid reminder of the enmeshment of individual psyches in their wider social and cultural environments.
From Oaxacan wood carvings to dessert kitchens in provincial France, Critical Craft presents thirteen ethnographies which examine what defines and makes 'craft' in a wide variety of practices from around the world. Challenging the conventional understanding of craft as a survival, a revival, or something that resists capitalism, the book turns instead to the designers, DIY enthusiasts, traditional artisans, and technical programmers who consider their labor to be craft, in order to comprehend how they make sense of it. The authors' ethnographic studies focus on the individuals and communities who claim a practice as their own, bypassing the question of craft survival to ask how and why activities termed craft are mobilized and reproduced. Moving beyond regional studies of heritage artisanship, the authors suggest that ideas of craft are by definition part of a larger cosmopolitan dialogue of power and identity. By paying careful attention to these sometimes conflicting voices, this collection shows that there is great flexibility in terms of which activities are labelled 'craft'. In fact, there are many related ideas of craft and these shape distinct engagements with materials, people, and the economy. Case studies from countries including Mexico, Nigeria, India, Taiwan, the Philippines, and France draw together evidence based on linguistics, microsociology, and participant observation to explore the shifting terrain on which those engaged in craft are operating. What emerges is a fascinating picture which shows how claims about craft are an integral part of contemporary global change.
The development of Chinese, Mongolian, and Tibetan Studies in the West since World War II has been accompanied by a dramatic growth in the number of doctoral degrees awarded for research concerned with the countries and civilizations of East Asia. While some of these dissertations have been cited in various sources, until now no definitive reference guide has brought together in a classified, annotated, indexed, and up-to-date manner the entire body of thesis literature on China and Inner Asia written between 1976 and 1990. Included are more than 10,000 entries for dissertations in the humanities and the social sciences, law, medicine, theology, engineering, and other disciplines, with more than half of these works not cited in Dissertation Abstracts International. The entries are classified and grouped together in topical chapters, and the volume includes a detailed table of contents, thousands of cross-references, and three extensive indexes to facilitate use. Each entry includes considerable bibliographic information and a descriptive annotation. The volume also includes information on the availability of the dissertations from UMI, the British Library Document Supply Centre, and other sources worldwide.
Based on extensive fieldwork the author provides unique insights into the functioning of a traditional form of theatre in the economically advanced region of southern Fujian, thus giving a fascinating window on contemporary China.