Some of the most prominent social and cultural anthropologists have come together in this volume to discuss Maurice Godelier's work. They explore and revisit some of the highly complex practices and structures social scientists encounter in their fieldwork. From the nature-culture debate to the fabrication of hereditary political systems, from transforming gender relations to the problems of the Christianization of indigenous peoples, these chapters demonstrate both the diversity of anthropological topics and the opportunity for constructive dialogue around shared methodological and theoretical models.
The significance that people grant to their affiliations as members of nations, religions, classes, races, ethnicities and genders is evidence of the vital need for a cosmopolitan project that originates in the figure of Anyone – the universal and yet individual human being. Cosmopolitanism offers an alternative to multiculturalism, a different vision of identity, belonging, solidarity and justice, that avoids the seemingly intractable character of identity politics: it identifies samenesses of the human condition that underlie the surface differences of history, culture and society, nation, ethnicity, religion, class, race and gender. This book argues for the importance of cosmopolitanism as a theory of human being, as a methodology for social science and as a moral and political program.
Combining rich personal accounts from twelve veteran anthropologists with reflexive analyses of the state of anthropology today, this book is a treatise on theory and method offering fresh insights into the production of anthropological knowledge, from the creation of key concepts to major paradigm shifts. Particular focus is given to how 'peripheral perspectives' can help re-shape the discipline and the ways that anthropologists think about contemporary culture and society. From urban Maori communities in Aotearoa/New Zealand to the Highlands of Papua New Guinea, from Arnhem Land in Australia to the villages of Yorkshire, these accounts take us to the heart of the anthropological endeavour, decentring mainstream perspectives, and revealing the intimate relationships and processes that create anthropological knowledge.
Given the anthropological focus on ethnography as a kind of deep immersion, the interview poses theoretical and methodological challenges for the discipline. This volume explores those challenges and argues that the interview should be seen as a special, productive site of ethnographic encounter, a site of a very particular and important kind of knowing. In a range of social contexts and cultural settings, contributors show how the interview is experienced and imagined as a kind of space within which personal, biographic and social cues and norms can be explored and interrogated. The interview possesses its own authenticity, therefore—true to the persons involved and true to their moment of interaction—whilst at the same time providing information on human capacities and proclivities that is generalizable beyond particular social and cultural contexts.
Anthropology by American Anthropological Association