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
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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.

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
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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

Iconic Books and Texts


Author: James W. Watts
Publisher: Equinox Publishing (Indonesia)
ISBN: 9781781792544
Category: Books
Page: 446
View: 2078

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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.

Mapping Intermediality in Performance


Author: Sarah Bay-Cheng,Chiel Kattenbelt,Andy Lavender
Publisher: Amsterdam University Press
ISBN: 9089642552
Category: Performing Arts
Page: 304
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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.

An Anthropology of Architecture


Author: Victor Buchli
Publisher: A&C Black
ISBN: 0857853015
Category: Architecture
Page: 224
View: 8406

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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.

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
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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.

Analytic Narratives


Author: Robert H. Bates
Publisher: Princeton University Press
ISBN: 9780691001296
Category: Political Science
Page: 249
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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.

Reconstructing Chinatown

Ethnic Enclaves and Global Change
Author: N.A
Publisher: U of Minnesota Press
ISBN: 9781452903569
Category: Chinatown (New York, N.Y.)
Page: 248
View: 7858

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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: 8035

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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.

Archaeology

The Discipline of Things
Author: Bjørnar Olsen
Publisher: Univ of California Press
ISBN: 0520274164
Category: Social Science
Page: 255
View: 7149

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“This book exhorts the reader to embrace the materiality of archaeology by recognizing how every step in the discipline’s scientific processes involves interaction with myriad physical artifacts, ranging from the camel-hair brush to profile drawings to virtual reality imaging. At the same time, the reader is taken on a phenomenological journey into various pasts, immersed in the lives of peoples from other times, compelled to engage their senses with the sights, smells, and noises of the publics and places whose remains they study. This is a refreshingly original and provocative look at the meaning of the material culture that lies at the foundation of the archaeological discipline.”—Michael Brian Schiffer, author of The Material Life of Human Beings “This volume is a radical call to fundamentally rethink the ontology, profession, and practice of archaeology. The authors present a closely reasoned, epistemologically sound argument for why archaeology should be considered the discipline of things, rather than its more commonplace definition as the study of the human past through material traces. All scholars and students of archaeology will need to read and contemplate this thought-provoking book.”—Wendy Ashmore, Professor of Anthropology, UC Riverside "A broad, illuminating, and well-researched overview of theoretical problems pertaining to archaeology. The authors make a calm defense of the role of objects against tedious claims of 'fetishism.'"—Graham Harman, author of The Quadruple Object

Re-constructing Archaeology

Theory and Practice
Author: Michael Shanks,Christopher Tilley
Publisher: Routledge
ISBN: 1134886098
Category: Social Science
Page: 312
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First published in 1992. Routledge is an imprint of Taylor & Francis, an informa company.

New Romantic Cyborgs

Romanticism, Information Technology, and the End of the Machine
Author: Mark Coeckelbergh
Publisher: MIT Press
ISBN: 0262035464
Category: Science
Page: 336
View: 1843

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An account of the complex relationship between technology and romanticism that links nineteenth-century monsters, automata, and mesmerism with twenty-first-century technology's magic devices and romantic cyborgs.

The Routledge Companion to Remix Studies


Author: Eduardo Navas,Owen Gallagher,xtine burrough
Publisher: Routledge
ISBN: 1134748817
Category: Social Science
Page: 532
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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.

The Dark Knight's Captive Bride


Author: Natasha Wild
Publisher: Createspace Independent Publishing Platform
ISBN: 9781540342904
Category:
Page: 454
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She is the daughter of his enemy...and the keeper of his heart. Richard de Claiborne, the dark earl of Dunsmore, serves King Edward Plantagenet well. Sworn to obey his king's every order, he nevertheless chafes at the command he wed the daughter of his enemy--a man who slew his father in cold blood. But King Edward wants peace in his lands, and he will stop at nothing to get it. If he has to order his most powerful Marcher lord to marry a Welsh princess, he considers it a small price to pay. Princess Gwenllian is a political pawn. When she's forced to marry the evil Black Hawk de Claiborne, she quakes at his fierceness and brutality. But she does her duty to her father and her people, knowing she will never surrender to her enemy. In the halls of Black Hawk's great keep, Gwen glimpses a man who can be tender and passionate-and who teaches her about breathtaking sensuality and a desire so great it threatens every vow she ever made to keep her heart locked tight. As war once more looms between Wales and England, Gwen realizes a terrible truth: she's in love with the enemy. When long-buried secrets threaten to destroy her fragile happiness, she must make a terrible choice-or watch the man she loves sacrifice his life to save hers...

Changing Families

An Ethnographic Approach to Divorce and Separation
Author: Bob Simpson
Publisher: Berg Publishers
ISBN: 9781859739198
Category: Family & Relationships
Page: 181
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Recent decades have seen spectacular increases in the levels of divorce and separation across the Western world. This important development is having a radical impact on the conduct and nature of family relationships. This book offers an original investigation of these critical transformations through an ethnographic analysis of post-divorce family life in Britain and provides insightful answers to vexing questions, such as: - What cultural values and ideologies motivate and shape concerns over relationships when marriage ends? - Which relationships continue and why? - What cultural values underpin the financial transactions that take place or (more commonly) fail to take place after divorce? Drawing on extensive interviews with those most affected by divorce, the author argues that the positive sentiments traditionally associated with the notion of kinship are wholly inadequate when it comes to understanding divorce, but that kinship can provide an illuminating window through which to consider the breakdown of marital relations. This book represents a significant contribution to current debates over the changing form and expression of relationships in Western society in the late twentieth century.

Theory and Practice in Archaeology


Author: Ian Hodder
Publisher: Routledge
ISBN: 1134797338
Category: Social Science
Page: 298
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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.

Tragic Spirits

Shamanism, Memory, and Gender in Contemporary Mongolia
Author: Manduhai Buyandelger
Publisher: University of Chicago Press
ISBN: 022601309X
Category: Social Science
Page: 304
View: 3618

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The collapse of socialism at the end of the twentieth century brought devastating changes to Mongolia. Economic shock therapy—an immediate liberalization of trade and privatization of publicly owned assets—quickly led to impoverishment, especially in rural parts of the country, where Tragic Spirits takes place. Following the travels of the nomadic Buryats, Manduhai Buyandelger tells a story not only of economic devastation but also a remarkable Buryat response to it—the revival of shamanic practices after decades of socialist suppression. Attributing their current misfortunes to returning ancestral spirits who are vengeful over being abandoned under socialism, the Buryats are now at once trying to appease their ancestors and recover the history of their people through shamanic practice. Thoroughly documenting this process, Buyandelger situates it as part of a global phenomenon, comparing the rise of shamanism in liberalized Mongolia to its similar rise in Africa and Indonesia. In doing so, she offers a sophisticated analysis of the way economics, politics, gender, and other factors influence the spirit world and the crucial workings of cultural memory.