The Materiality of Magic

An artifactual investigation into ritual practices and popular beliefs

Author: Natalie Armitage

Publisher: Oxbow Books

ISBN: 1785700138

Category: Social Science

Page: 152

View: 6860

The subject of ‘magic’ has long been considered peripheral and sensationalist, the word itself having become something of an academic taboo. However, beliefs in magic and the rituals that surround them are extensive – as are their material manifestations – and to avoid them is to ignore a prevalent aspect of cultures worldwide, from prehistory to the present day. The Materiality of Magic addresses the value of the material record as a resource in investigations into magic, ritual practices, and popular beliefs. The chronological and geographic focuses of the papers presented here vary from prehistory to the present-day, including numinous interpretations of fossils and ritual deposits in Bronze Age Europe; apotropaic devices in Roman and Medieval Britain; the evolution of superstitions and ritual customs – from the ‘voodoo doll’ of Europe and Africa to a Scottish ‘wishing-tree’; and an exploration of spatiality in West African healing practices. The objectives of this collection of nine papers are twofold. First, to provide a platform from which to showcase innovative research and theoretical approaches in a subject which has largely been neglected within archaeology and related disciplines, and, secondly, to redress this neglect. The papers were presented at the 2012 Theoretical Archaeology Group (TAG) conference in Liverpool.
Posted in Social Science

From Medievalism to Early-Modernism

Adapting the English Past

Author: Marina Gerzic,Aidan Norrie

Publisher: Routledge

ISBN: 0429683006

Category: Literary Criticism

Page: 268

View: 7444

From Medievalism to Early-Modernism: Adapting the English Past is a collection of essays that both analyses the historical and cultural medieval and early modern past, and engages with the medievalism and early-modernism—a new term introduced in this collection—present in contemporary popular culture. By focusing on often overlooked uses of the past in contemporary culture—such as the allusions to John Webster’s The Duchess of Malfi (1623) in J.K. Rowling’s Harry Potter books, and the impact of intertextual references and internet fandom on the BBC’s The Hollow Crown: The Wars of the Roses—the contributors illustrate how cinematic, televisual, artistic, and literary depictions of the historical and cultural past not only re-purpose the past in varying ways, but also build on a history of adaptations that audiences have come to know and expect. From Medievalism to Early-Modernism: Adapting the English Past analyses the way that the medieval and early modern periods are used in modern adaptations, and how these adaptations both reflect contemporary concerns, and engage with a history of intertextuality and intervisuality.
Posted in Literary Criticism

Relational Identities and Other-than-Human Agency in Archaeology

Author: Eleanor Harrison-Buck,Julia A. Hendon

Publisher: University Press of Colorado

ISBN: 1607327473

Category: Social Science

Page: 296

View: 9255

Relational Identities and Other-than-Human Agency in Archaeology explores the benefits and consequences of archaeological theorizing on and interpretation of the social agency of nonhumans as relational beings capable of producing change in the world. The volume cross-examines traditional understanding of agency and personhood, presenting a globally diverse set of case studies that cover a range of cultural, geographical, and historical contexts. Agency (the ability to act) and personhood (the reciprocal qualities of relational beings) have traditionally been strictly assigned to humans. In case studies from Ghana to Australia to the British Isles and Mesoamerica, contributors to this volume demonstrate that objects, animals, locations, and other nonhuman actors also potentially share this ontological status and are capable of instigating events and enacting change. This kind of other-than-human agency is not a one-way transaction of cause to effect but requires an appropriate form of reciprocal engagement indicative of relational personhood, which in these cases, left material traces detectable in the archaeological record. Modern dualist ontologies separating objects from subjects and the animate from the inanimate obscure our understanding of the roles that other-than-human agents played in past societies. Relational Identities and Other-than-Human Agency in Archaeology challenges this essentialist binary perspective. Contributors in this volume show that intersubjective (inherently social) ways of being are a fundamental and indispensable condition of all personhood and move the debate in posthumanist scholarship beyond the polarizing dichotomies of relational versus bounded types of persons. In this way, the book makes a significant contribution to theory and interpretation of personhood and other-than-human agency in archaeology. Contributors: Susan M. Alt, Joanna Brück, Kaitlyn Chandler, Erica Hill, Meghan C. L. Howey, Andrew Meirion Jones, Matthew Looper, Ian J. McNiven, Wendi Field Murray, Timothy R. Pauketat, Ann B. Stahl, Maria Nieves Zedeño
Posted in Social Science

Ritual in Late Bronze Age Ireland

Material Culture, Practices, Landscape Setting and Social Context

Author: Katherine Leonard

Publisher: Archaeopress Archaeology

ISBN: 9781784912208

Category: History

Page: 242

View: 7829

This text develops a new perspective on Late Bronze Age (LBA) Ireland by identifying and analysing patterns of ritual practice in the archaeological record. The bookends of this study are the introduction of the bronze slashing sword to Ireland at around 1200 BC and the introduction and proliferation of iron technology beginning around 600 BC. Therefore, it is societal change related to new technology which defines the period discussed as the Irish Late Bronze Age (LBA) herein. Ritual practices find expression in a range of contexts which can be studied separately. However, they require an overarching, integrated ritual system to contextualise and attempt to understand their broader purpose. Similar rituals were consistently enacted in similar locations across the island of Ireland in the LBA. This indicates shared understanding of the way to enact certain rituals as well as shared understanding of what these practices would achieve.
Posted in History

Iconic Books and Texts

Author: James W. Watts

Publisher: Equinox Publishing (Indonesia)

ISBN: 9781781792544

Category: Books

Page: 446

View: 764

Images of books appear in art, advertising and commercial logos to symbolize learning, knowledge and wisdom. In religious and secular rituals around the globe, people carry, show, wave, touch and kiss books and other texts, as well as read them. Such images and rituals utilize the iconic dimension of texts. This volume is the first comprehensive survey of iconic books and texts. It traces their development and influence from ancient to modern times and compares their roles in multiple cultures and religious traditions. The twenty-two essays presented here are original, cutting-edge contributions to this new academic field, and will appeal to students and scholars across the study of religions, literature, book history, archives and libraries.
Posted in Books

Mapping Intermediality in Performance

Author: Sarah Bay-Cheng,Chiel Kattenbelt,Andy Lavender

Publisher: Amsterdam University Press

ISBN: 9089642552

Category: Performing Arts

Page: 304

View: 3951

This insightful book explores the relationship between theater and digital culture. The authors show that the marriage of traditional performance with new technologies leads to an upheaval of the implicit “live” quality of theatre by introducing media interfaces and Internet protocols, all the while blurring the barriers between theater-makers and their audience.
Posted in Performing Arts

The Social Archaeology of Food

Thinking about Eating from Prehistory to the Present

Author: Christine A. Hastorf

Publisher: Cambridge University Press

ISBN: 1316710416

Category: Social Science

Page: N.A

View: 4224

This book offers a global perspective on the role food has played in shaping human societies, through both individual and collective identities. It integrates ethnographic and archaeological case studies from the European and Near Eastern Neolithic, Han China, ancient Cahokia, Classic Maya, the Inka and many other periods and regions, to ask how the meal in particular has acted as a social agent in the formation of society, economy, culture and identity. Drawing on a range of social theorists, Hastorf provides a theoretical toolkit essential for any archaeologist interested in foodways. Studying the social life of food, this book engages with taste, practice, the meal and the body to discuss power, identity, gender and meaning that creates our world as it created past societies.
Posted in Social Science

Analytic Narratives

Author: Robert H. Bates

Publisher: Princeton University Press

ISBN: 9780691001296

Category: Political Science

Page: 249

View: 1578

How can social scientists draw broad, applicable principles of political order from specific historical examples? In this volume, five senior scholars offer a methodological response to this question. The result is both a methodological manifesto and an applied handbook.
Posted in Political Science

Monuments, Empires, and Resistance

The Araucanian Polity and Ritual Narratives

Author: Tom D. Dillehay

Publisher: Cambridge University Press

ISBN: 1139464744

Category: Social Science

Page: N.A

View: 3738

From AD 1550 to 1850, the Araucanian polity in southern Chile was a center of political resistance to the intruding Spanish empire. In this 2007 book, Tom D. Dillehay examines the resistance strategies of the Araucanians and how they used mound building and other sacred monuments to reorganize their political and culture life in order to unite against the Spanish. Drawing on anthropological research conducted over three decades, Dillehay focuses on the development of leadership, shamanism, ritual, and power relations. His study combines developments in social theory with the archaeological, ethnographic, and historical records. Both theoretically and empirically informed, this book is a fascinating account of the only indigenous ethnic group to successfully resist outsiders for more than three centuries and to flourish under these conditions.
Posted in Social Science

Evil Media

Author: Matthew Fuller,Andrew Goffey

Publisher: MIT Press

ISBN: 0262304406

Category: Social Science

Page: 248

View: 8932

Evil Media develops a philosophy of media power that extends the concept of media beyond its tried and trusted use in the games of meaning, symbolism, and truth. It addresses the gray zones in which media exist as corporate work systems, algorithms and data structures, twenty-first century self-improvement manuals, and pharmaceutical techniques. Evil Media invites the reader to explore and understand the abstract infrastructure of the present day. From search engines to flirting strategies, from the value of institutional stupidity to the malicious minutiae of databases, this book shows how the devil is in the details. The title takes the imperative "Don't be evil" and asks, what would be done any differently in contemporary computational and networked media were that maxim reversed.Media here are about much more and much less than symbols, stories, information, or communication: media do things. They incite and provoke, twist and bend, leak and manage. In a series of provocative stratagems designed to be used, Evil Media sets its reader an ethical challenge: either remain a transparent intermediary in the networks and chains of communicative power or become oneself an active, transformative medium.
Posted in Social Science

Institutional Design In New Democracies

Eastern Europe And Latin America

Author: Arend Lijphart

Publisher: Routledge

ISBN: 042997941X

Category: Political Science

Page: 288

View: 7734

Posted in Political Science

An Anthropology of Architecture

Author: Victor Buchli

Publisher: A&C Black

ISBN: 0857853015

Category: Architecture

Page: 224

View: 5410

Ever since anthropology has existed as a discipline, anthropologists have thought about architectural forms. This book provides the first overview of how anthropologists have studied architecture and the extraordinarily rich thought and data this has produced. With a focus on domestic space - that intimate context in which anthropologists traditionally work - the book explains how anthropologists think about public and private boundaries, gender, sex and the body, the materiality of architectural forms and materials, building technologies and architectural representations. Each chapter uses a broad range of case studies from around the world to examine from within anthropology what architecture 'does' - how it makes people and shapes, sustains and unravels social relations. An Anthropology of Architecture is key reading for students of anthropology, material culture, geography, sociology, architectural theory, design and city planning.
Posted in Architecture

Consuming the Romantic Utopia

Love and the Cultural Contradictions of Capitalism

Author: Eva Illouz

Publisher: Univ of California Press

ISBN: 9780520917996

Category: Social Science

Page: 332

View: 5169

To what extent are our most romantic moments determined by the portrayal of love in film and on TV? Is a walk on a moonlit beach a moment of perfect romance or simply a simulation of the familiar ideal seen again and again on billboards and movie screens? In her unique study of American love in the twentieth century, Eva Illouz unravels the mass of images that define our ideas of love and romance, revealing that the experience of "true" love is deeply embedded in the experience of consumer capitalism. Illouz studies how individual conceptions of love overlap with the world of clichés and images she calls the "Romantic Utopia." This utopia lives in the collective imagination of the nation and is built on images that unite amorous and economic activities in the rituals of dating, lovemaking, and marriage. Since the early 1900s, advertisers have tied the purchase of beauty products, sports cars, diet drinks, and snack foods to success in love and happiness. Illouz reveals that, ultimately, every cliché of romance—from an intimate dinner to a dozen red roses—is constructed by advertising and media images that preach a democratic ethos of consumption: material goods and happiness are available to all. Engaging and witty, Illouz's study begins with readings of ads, songs, films, and other public representations of romance and concludes with individual interviews in order to analyze the ways in which mass messages are internalized. Combining extensive historical research, interviews, and postmodern social theory, Illouz brings an impressive scholarship to her fascinating portrait of love in America.
Posted in Social Science

The Magic of Coin-Trees from Religion to Recreation

The Roots of a Ritual

Author: Ceri Houlbrook

Publisher: Springer

ISBN: 331975517X

Category: History

Page: 307

View: 5860

This book traces the history of ritual landscapes in the British Isles, and the transition from religious practice to recreation, by focusing on a highly understudied exemplar: the coin-tree. These are trees imbued with magical properties into which coins have been ritually embedded. This is a contemporary custom which can be traced back in the literature to the 1700s, when it was practiced for folk-medical and dedicatory purposes. Today, the custom is widespread, with over 200 coin-trees distributed across the British Isles, but is more akin to the casual deposition of coins in a wishing-well: coins are deposited in the tree in exchange for wishes, good luck, or future fortune. Ceri Houlbrook contributes to the debate on the historic relationships between religion, ritual, and popular magic in British contexts from 1700 to the present.
Posted in History

Changing Families

An Ethnographic Approach to Divorce and Separation

Author: Bob Simpson

Publisher: Berg Publishers

ISBN: 9781859739198

Category: Social Science

Page: 181

View: 2407

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Posted in Social Science

Theory and Practice in Archaeology

Author: Ian Hodder

Publisher: Routledge

ISBN: 1134797338

Category: Social Science

Page: 298

View: 8469

In this latest collection of his articles, of which seven are written especially for this volume, Ian Hodder captures and continues the lively controversy of the 1980s over symbolic and structural approaches to archaeology. The book acts as an overview of the developments in the discipline over the last decade; yet Hodder's brief is far wider. His aim is to break down the division between the intellectual and the "dirt" archaeologist to demonstrate that in this discipline more than any other, theory must be related to practice to save effectively our rapidly diminishing heritage.
Posted in Social Science

The Routledge Companion to Remix Studies

Author: Eduardo Navas,Owen Gallagher,xtine burrough

Publisher: Routledge

ISBN: 1134748817

Category: Social Science

Page: 532

View: 4569

The Routledge Companion to Remix Studies comprises contemporary texts by key authors and artists who are active in the emerging field of remix studies. As an organic international movement, remix culture originated in the popular music culture of the 1970s, and has since grown into a rich cultural activity encompassing numerous forms of media. The act of recombining pre-existing material brings up pressing questions of authenticity, reception, authorship, copyright, and the techno-politics of media activism. This book approaches remix studies from various angles, including sections on history, aesthetics, ethics, politics, and practice, and presents theoretical chapters alongside case studies of remix projects. The Routledge Companion to Remix Studies is a valuable resource for both researchers and remix practitioners, as well as a teaching tool for instructors using remix practices in the classroom.
Posted in Social Science

The Science of Sacrifice

American Literature and Modern Social Theory

Author: Susan L. Mizruchi

Publisher: Princeton University Press

ISBN: 9781400822478

Category: Literary Criticism

Page: 496

View: 3239

From ritual killings to subtle acts of self-denial, the practice and rhetoric of sacrifice has a special centrality in modern American literature. In a compelling interdisciplinary investigation, Susan Mizruchi portrays an episode in American cultural history when the literary movement of realism and the fledgling field of sociology both converged in the belief that sacrifice is basic to sociality. This is a book about the fascination that sacrifice held for writers--principally Herman Melville, Henry James, and W.E.B. Du Bois--and also for those who articulated the main tenets of modern social theory, an inquiry that eventually spans historical events such as public lynchings and the political scapegoating of immigrants a century ago. The execution in Billy Budd Sailor, the death of Du Bois's first-born son in The Souls of Black Folk, Henry James's preoccupation with renunciation and scapegoating, and the self-denying working classes of Norris and Stein all illustrate repeated stagings of sacrificial rituals from a Biblical past. For Mizruchi, the peculiar persistence of this aesthetic construct becomes a guide to a rich theological and social-scientific tradition distinctive to the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries, and including such influential works as Smith's Lectures on the Religion of the Semites, Frazer's Golden Bough, and Ross's Sin and Society. The major features of sacrifice--its original association with spiritual doubt, its function as a form of spiritual economics that sustained divisions between the fortunate and the bereft, and its role in fixing boundaries between aliens and kin--held strong symbolic value for writers struggling to reconcile faith with rationalism, and communal coherence with capitalist expansion. Mizruchi eloquently demonstrates how the conceptual power of sacrifice made it a key mediator of cultural change, from the decline of sympathy and the significance of "race" in an emerging multicultural society to the revival of maternal self-sacrifice.
Posted in Literary Criticism