Anthropology through the Looking-Glass: Critical Ethnography by Michael Herzfeld

By Michael Herzfeld

Utilizing Greek ethnography as a reflect for an ethnography of anthropology itself, this publication unearths the ways that the self-discipline of anthropology is ensnared within the related political and social symbolism as its item of research. the writer pushes the comparative targets of anthropology past the normal separation of tribal item from indifferent medical observer, and provides the self-discipline a severe resource of reflexive perception according to empirical ethnography instead of on ideological hypothesis on my own.

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Some of the most dramatic expressions of this secular reading of original sin came 32 Anthropology through the looking-glass from writers such as Herder and Hegel, who were deeply implicated in the rise of national and statist ideologies. 258], cited in Cassirer 1946:266-7). Here, starkly, is the ahistorical reality of historicism - the perfect Urtext, the abolition of contingency, for which mere mortals constantly yearn. Hegel's position offers a salutary lesson. Like Herder in Germany and Vico in Italy, Hegel was to become a symbol of philosophies very unlike what he preached.

The centuries of the Enlightenment and Romanticism recast original sin still further, as Europe assumed immediate responsibility for its intellectual weaknesses as a precondition for historical perfectibility, and transmuted the polyglot agonies of Babel into a cult of transcendent European erudition. Some of the most dramatic expressions of this secular reading of original sin came 32 Anthropology through the looking-glass from writers such as Herder and Hegel, who were deeply implicated in the rise of national and statist ideologies.

Like that description, it is strongly indicative of the imbalance of power between those who confer such stereotypes and those to whom they are applied. Similarly, at a more general level, when Greeks criticize their own alleged proclivity ofefthinofovia, they reinforce a stereotype that the Great Powers have long used both to justify intervening in Greek affairs and to cover their disregard for Greek aspirations. The fall of the City: culture and imperfection These implications of inequality reappear in the refractions of the doctrine of original sin that characterize the cultural ideologies of modern Greece.

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