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This study focuses on the issues of secrecy, ambiguity and flexibility in what is known as the 'morning circle' in German schools. The morning circle has a longstanding tradition in the German school system and is widely practised. Over the past twenty years, this tradition has been the subject of increasing academic debates, many of which have suffered from one-sided viewpoints that reduce the morning circle to a warm-up phase for the school day or a means of teaching language. What has not been addressed in these debates is the initial notion of the circle as 'the primary feature of new education' (Petersen) - which challenged traditional educational ideas -, or the question as to why the morning circle has become so widespread in German schools today.
This volume consists of a number of carefully-selected readings that represent a wide range of discussions and theorizing about ritual. The selection encompasses definitional questions, issues of interpretation, meaning, and function, and a roster of ethnographic and analytical topics, covering classic themes such as ancestor worship and sacrifice, initiation, gender, healing, social change, and shamanic practices, as well as recent critical and reconstructive theorizing on embodiment, performance, and performativity. In their Introduction to the volume, the Editors provide an overall survey and critical consideration of topics, incorporating insights from their own long-term field research and reflections on the readings included. The Introduction and readings together provide a unique research tool for those interested in pursuing the study of ritual processes in depth, with the benefit of both historical and contemporary approaches.
This book argues that the breaking and re-making of frames of analysis underlie the history of theorizing in anthropology. Pamela J. Stewart and Andrew J. Strathern note that this mode of analysis risks fabricating over-essentialized dichotomies between viewpoints. The authors advocate a mindful, nuanced, people-centered approach to all theorizing-one that avoids total system approaches (-isms) and suggest that theory should relate cogently to ethnography. Mindful anthropology, as this book envisages it, is not a specific theory but a philosophical aspiration for the discipline as a whole.
This volume brings together a selection of classic and contemporary articles written by anthropologists over the last sixty years. The essays reflect the move from earlier preoccupations with 'culture' and 'relationality' and cast new light on the relevance of ethnography for organisational and social theory.
Roy Rappaport argues that religion is central to the continuing evolution of life, although it has been been displaced from its original position of intellectual authority by the rise of modern science. His book, which could be construed as in some degree religious as well as about religion, insists that religion can and must be reconciled with science. Combining adaptive and cognitive approaches to the study of humankind, he mounts a comprehensive analysis of religion's evolutionary significance, seeing it as co-extensive with the invention of language and hence of culture as we know it. At the same time he assembles the fullest study yet of religion's main component, ritual, which constructs the conceptions which we take to be religious and has been central in the making of humanity's adaptation. The text amounts to a manual for effective ritual, illustrated by examples drawn from anthropology, history, philosophy, comparative religion, and elsewhere.
How are ethnographic knowledge and anthropological theory created out of field experiences? Spanning Papua New Guinea, Taiwan, and Scotland, and Ireland, Stewart and Strathern show how fieldwork in apparently different areas can lead to unexpected comparisons and discoveries of similarities in human cross-cultural patterns of behavior.
This volume provides analyses of a range of subjects and issues in the death penalty debate, from medicine to the media. The essays address in particular the personal complexities of those involved, a fundamental part of the subject usually overridden by the theoretical and legal aspects of the debate. The unique personal vantage offered by this volume makes it essential reading for anyone interested in going beyond the removed theoretical understanding of the death penalty, to better comprehending its fundamental humanity. Additionally, the international range of the analysis, enabling disaggregation of country specific motivations, ensures the complexities of the death penalty are also considered from a global perspective.

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