Models and Mirrors: Towards an Anthropology of Public Events

Overview

Ritual is one of the most discussed cultural practices, yet its treatment in anthropological terms has been seriously limited, characterized by a host of narrow conceptual distinctions. One major reason for this situation has been the prevalence of positivist anthropologies that have viewed and summarized ritual occasions first and foremost in terms of their declared and assumed functions. By contrast, this book, which has become a classic, investigates them as epistemological phenomena in their own right. ...
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Overview

Ritual is one of the most discussed cultural practices, yet its treatment in anthropological terms has been seriously limited, characterized by a host of narrow conceptual distinctions. One major reason for this situation has been the prevalence of positivist anthropologies that have viewed and summarized ritual occasions first and foremost in terms of their declared and assumed functions. By contrast, this book, which has become a classic, investigates them as epistemological phenomena in their own right. Comparing public events - a domain which includes ritual and related occasions - the author argues that any public event must first be comprehended through the logic of its design. It is the logic of organization of an occasion which establishes in large measure what that occasion is able to do in relation to the world within which it is created and practiced.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781571811653
  • Publisher: Berghahn Books, Incorporated
  • Publication date: 8/1/1998
  • Edition description: REV
  • Pages: 386
  • Lexile: 1250L (what's this?)
  • Product dimensions: 5.50 (w) x 8.50 (h) x 0.80 (d)

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 30, 2003

    PATH-BREAKING

    Models and Mirrors, for me, is one of the rarest experiences in coming close to a thinker¿s modes of making perceptions, analysis and the making of connections. The ways of thinking are so transparent that the reader is never gone out of touch with the logical labyrinth, which the author creates in the universe of Models and Mirrors. The very question that arises in your mind after reading a line, the author has touched it in the very next one, leading the reader through such inspiring steps into the ecology of mind. Rituals are no more the long, boring corridors of anthropologist¿s `pure¿ disciplinary travelogues- Models and Mirrors have rescued them from their exclusive sites of enactment making them observable to everyone of us whatever your field or discipline may be. Similarly, it makes you look underneath the fascinating spectacles around, so that we may continually ask, how much has actually changed in our lived- in- world. How impactful are the `changes¿ that we usually see (mostly talk about) on the surface? Students of all disciplines, artists and composers, theorists concerned about social transformation, intellectuals stuck up in their `cultural contexts¿ and anyone who likes an exciting mind traveling-can find this book authored by anthropologist, Don Handelman, significantly moving. Models and Mirrors is such a tempting and inspiring volume; poetic and thought provoking; I carry it with me always- the most friendly, caring and challenging work I¿ve encountered. Sreekala S New Delhi, 30-10-2003

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