Clifford Geertz, in his 1973 Interpretation of Cultures, brought about an epistemological revolution unprecedented since Levi-Strauss's structuralism. In place of Levi-Strauss's deep structures, Geertz placed "deep meanings" and "thick descriptions," in a synthesis of the American tradition of cultural anthropology and new qualitative approaches in the humanities. He powerfully synthesized and gave the heart of anthropology's tradition a new and enriched conceptual language that came to be known as "interpretive anthropology" and that placed meaning over form in the center of social analysis. This book maps the circuits of cross
fertilizations among disciplines in the humanities and social sciences that have developed from Geertz's "interpretive turn."
Panourgia and Marcus bring together anthropologists working in various parts of the world (Greece, Bali, Taiwan, the United States) with classicists, historians, and scholars in cultural studies. The volume takes into account global realities such as 9/11 and the opening of the Cypriot Green Line and explores the different ways in which Geertz's anthropology has shaped the pedagogy of their disciplines and enabled discussions among them. Focusing on place and time, locations and temporalities, the essays in this volume interrogate the fixity of interpretation and open new spaces of inquiry. The volume addresses a wide audience from
the humanities and the social sciences-anyone interested in the development of a new humanism that will relocate the human as a subject of social action.
NENI PANOURGIA is Associate Professor of Anthropology at Columbia University. She has published Fragments of Death, Fables of Identity: An Athenian Anthropography, winner of the Grand Jury Prize of the International Society of Ethnohistory and co-winner of the Chicago Folklore Prize. She has co-edited, with George E. Marcus, the volume Ethnographica Moralia: Experiments in Interpretive Anthropology (Fordham). GEORGE MARCUS is Chancellor's Professor of Anthropology at the University of California, Irvine. He is the author of Ethnography Through Thick and Thin, Writing Culture: The Politics and Poetics of Ethnography (with James Clifford), Anthropology as Cultural Critique: An Experimental Movement in the Social Sciences (with Michael Fischer), and editor of Critical Anthropology Now: Unexpected Contexts, Shifting Constituencies, Changing Agendas.