Arguments with Ethnography Comparative Approaches to History, Politics and Religion

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  • Format: Hardcover
  • Copyright: 1999-02-01
  • Publisher: Berg Pub Ltd
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Arguments with Ethnography presents a major critique of the globalisation of the culture principle in anthropology. The study contends that the subjective anthropology promoted through postmodernism represents an extreme development of long established, highly patronising and misleading evaluations in the anthropologist's creative role in the construction of theory. Arguing that theory-building is dependent on the actual study of peoples - a study which is empirically based and historically sensitive - the book advocates the "fieldwork mode of production and reproduction". The simplest model for the construction of empirically-grounded theory involves three interacting sets of factors: the subjective ethnographer and his deployment of current theoretical assumptions; the multi-layered ethnographic "facts" disclosed by fieldwork; the geopolitical and historical contexts in which fieldwork is conducted. Book jacket.

Author Biography

Ioan Lewis is Professor Emeritus of Anthropology at London School of Economics

Table of Contents

Prefacep. ix
Acknowledgementsp. xvi
History 'Functionalised'p. 1
A historico-functionalist debate: (Ernesto De Martino, Michel Leiris and E.E. Evans-Pritchard)p. 26
Deconstructing Descentp. 37
Frontier Fetishism and the 'Ethiopianisation' of Africap. 58
Writing Nationalism in the Horn of Africap. 69
Present and Past in North-East African Spirit-Possessionp. 80
The 'Wise Man's Choice': Conversion Theoriesp. 97
Shamans and Sex: a Comparative Perspectivep. 106
Ethnography and Theory in Anthropologyp. 115
Bibliographyp. 145
Indexp. 163
Table of Contents provided by Ingram. All Rights Reserved.

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