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'The Whiteman' is one of the most powerful and pervasive symbols in contemporary American Indian cultures. Portraits of 'the Whiteman': linguistic play and cultural symbols among the Western Apache investigates a complex form of joking in which Apaches stage carefully crafted imitations of Anglo-Americans and, by means of these characterizations, give audible voice and visible substance to their conceptions of this most pressing of social 'problems'. Keith Basso's essay, based on linguistic and ethnographic materials collected in Cibecue, a Western Apache community, provides interpretations of selected joking encounters to demonstrate how Apaches go about making sense of the behaviour of Anglo-Americans. This study draws on theory in symbolic anthropology, sociolinguistics, and the dramaturgical model of human communication developed by Erving Goffman. Although the assumptions and premises that shape these areas of inquiry are held by some to be quite disparate, this analysis shows them to be fully compatible and mutually complementary.
Revised and updated, the 2nd Edition of Living Language: An Introduction to Linguistic Anthropology presents an accessible introduction to the study of language in real-life social contexts around the world through the contemporary theory and practice of linguistic anthropology. Presents a highly accessible introduction to the study of language in real-life social contexts around the world Combines classic studies on language and cutting-edge contemporary scholarship and assumes no prior knowledge in linguistics or anthropology Features a series of updates and revisions for this new edition, including an all-new chapter on forms of nonverbal language Provides a unifying synthesis of current research and considers future directions for the field
One of the most popular anthropological case studies published in the last two decades, the latest edition of The Gebusi incorporates important new fieldwork, bringing ethnographic excellence and a riveting story fully up to date. Readers are welcomed into the lives of Papua New Guinea rainforest dwellers to witness a dramatic arc of cultural change and human transformation. When Knauft first studied them, Gebusi practiced powerful spirit séances and sorcery divinations, held resplendent initiations that included distinctive sexual customs, and endured high rates of violence. Sixteen years later, he found them participating in market activity, schooling, government programs, and sports; performing their own popular music; and practicing Christianity. More recently, Gebusi have been battered by economic hardship and withdrawal of government services—but have admirably revitalized their culture and livelihood. Sustained by traditions, access to land and waterways, and a keen sense of humor and vitality, Gebusi exhibit resilience and dignity amid conditions of continuing uncertainty and change. An absorbing, well-written, and humanistic account based on profound scholarship, The Gebusi, 4/E includes end-of-chapter “Broader Connections” that link Gebusi experiences to major anthropological topics—subsistence, kinship and marriage, politics, religion, gender and sexuality, ethnicity, nationalism, modernity, and the ethics of engaged and applied anthropology. A stunning full-color photo insert accentuates Knauft’s absorbing narrative. Callouts to instructional videos recorded with Gebusi and to an extensive online image bank on the author’s website further enrich the ethnography.
Should babies sleep alone in cribs, or in bed with parents? Is talking to babies useful, or a waste of time? A World of Babies provides different answers to these and countless other childrearing questions, precisely because diverse communities around the world hold drastically different beliefs about parenting. While celebrating that diversity, the book also explores the challenges that poverty, globalization and violence pose for parents. Fully updated for the twenty-first century, this edition features a new introduction and eight new or revised case studies that directly address contemporary parenting challenges, from China and Peru to Israel and the West Bank. Written as imagined advice manuals to parents, the creative format of this book brings alive a rich body of knowledge that highlights many models of baby-rearing - each shaped by deeply held values and widely varying cultural contexts. Parenthood may never again seem a matter of 'common sense'.
Cultural anthropologist Keith H. Basso (1940–2013) was noted for his long-term research of the Western Apaches, specifically those from the modern community of Cibecue, Arizona, the site of his ethnographic and linguistic research for fifty-four years. One of his earliest works, The Cibecue Apache, has now been read by generations of students. It captures the true character of Apache culture not only because of its objective analyses and descriptions but also because of the author’s belief in allowing the people to speak for themselves. Basso learned their language, became a trusted friend and intimate, and returned to the field often to gather data, participate, and observe. Basso’s goal in this now-classic work is to describe Cibecue Apache perceptions, experiences, conflicts, and indecision. A primary aim is to depict portions of the Western Apache belief system, especially those dealing with the supernatural. Emphasis is also given to the girls’ puberty ceremony, its meaning and functions, as well as modern Apache economic and political life.
"Gilmore's study brings new voices and experiences to current debates about religion versus spirituality through her richly textured descriptions of the characters, events, and spaces that make up the seemingly strange but culturally significant Burning Man festival. Readers will discover that Burning Man is a wonderful illustration of the dialectic between self and community at the heart of much of American religion today. Gilmore persuades us that those who trivialize this event by seeing it as a huge party, miss the ways in which Burning Man provides an unusual snapshot of diverse forms of American spiritual-seeking."--Sarah Pike, author of Earthly Bodies, Magical Selves: Contemporary Pagans and the Search for Community "At the generative core of research in ritual studies is a balancing act: on the one hand, involved; on the other, distanced. On the one hand, committed; on the other, critical. On the one hand, attentively rooted in ethnographic details; on the other, broadly theorized. Theater in a Crowded Fire walks that tightrope with remarkable agility."--Ronald L. Grimes, author of Deeply into the Bone
American anthropologist Ernestine McHugh arrived in the foothills of the Annapurna mountains in Nepal, and, surrounded by terraced fields, rushing streams, and rocky paths, she began one of several sojourns among the Gurung people whose ramro hawa-pani (good wind and water) not only describes the enduring bounty of their land but also reflects the climate of goodwill they seek to sustain in their community. It was in their steep Himalayan villages that McHugh came to know another culture, witnessing and learning the Buddhist appreciation for equanimity in moments of precious joy and inevitable sorrow. Love and Honor in the Himalayas is McHugh's gripping ethnographic memoir based on research among the Gurungs conducted over a span of fourteen years. As she chronicles the events of her fieldwork, she also tells a story that admits feeling and involvement, writing of the people who housed her in the terms in which they cast their relationship with her, that of family. Welcomed to call her host Ama and become a daughter in the household, McHugh engaged in a strong network of kin and friendship. She intimately describes, with a sure sense of comedy and pathos, the family's diverse experiences of life and loss, self and personhood, hope, knowledge, and affection. In mundane as well as dramatic rituals, the Gurungs ever emphasize the importance of love and honor in everyday life, regardless of circumstances, in all human relationships. Such was the lesson learned by McHugh, who arrived a young woman facing her own hardships and came to understand—and experience—the power of their ways of being. While it attends to a particular place and its inhabitants, Love and Honor in the Himalayas is, above all, about human possibility, about what people make of their lives. Through the compelling force of her narrative, McHugh lets her emotionally open fieldwork reveal insight into the privilege of joining a community and a culture. It is an invitation to sustain grace and kindness in the face of adversity, cultivate harmony and mutual support, and cherish life fully.

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