Download Self Consciousness: An Alternative Anthropology of Identity by Anthony Cohen PDF

By Anthony Cohen

ISBN-10: 0415083230

ISBN-13: 9780415083232

This article establishes the significance of the person, emphasizing the necessity to comprehend participants' information of themselves and their production in their personal social contexts and stipulations. Drawing relatively on quite a lot of ethnographic stories and components of anthropology from world wide, it proposes that anthropological fields, corresponding to tradition, society and social kin can be approached from the self upwards. The paintings demonstrates how social methods akin to ritual symbolism, association, rhetoric, socialization, marriage, naming, ethnicity and cultural nationalism are diversified in keeping with the desires of the inventive self, and the way emphasizing awareness to the actual, the person, and to self cognizance can either tell and self-discipline the bigger photograph.

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Additional resources for Self Consciousness: An Alternative Anthropology of Identity

Example text

Another mode of creativity which was more prominent in the anthropological literature was that of the performing self.

All I plead for here is that we should pay more careful attention to their limits, and to the ways in which they impinge upon individuals, than we have done in the past. SELF AGAINST ORTHODOXY I have suggested above that we cannot take for granted the existence of common understandings and meanings among even closely knit groups of people: that is, that we should always be careful to distinguish between the appearance and the reality of an interpretation common to different individuals. I will argue and illustrate the point in greater detail in later chapters.

By contrast, to ‘be spherical’ is to have merged all dimensions into a perfect shape—just as the self, fully immersed in water, is a perfect unity. The sphere rotates on its own axis, through its mid-point. Therefore the Mbuti say, ‘We should always be in the middle of our sphere. That is when there is ekimi. ’ In a sense, the sphere is the forest, but only in that the forest symbolises the harmony and balance which is the ideal of Mbuti social life. 3 The Mbuti’s image lends itself well to the view of social membership presented earlier which sees the self being tugged in different directions by multiple claims and loyalties, some of which may be mutually antagonistic.

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