Thinking Through Things: Theorising Artefacts Ethnographically

Thinking Through Things: Theorising Artefacts Ethnographically

By: Sari Wastell (editor), Amiria Henare (editor), Martin Holbraad (editor)Paperback

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Drawing upon the work of some of the most influential theorists in the field, Thinking Through Things demonstrates the quiet revolution growing in anthropology and its related disciplines, shifting its philosophical foundations. The first text to offer a direct and provocative challenge to disciplinary fragmentation - arguing for the futility of segregating the study of artefacts and society - this collection expands on the concerns about the place of objects and materiality in analytical strategies, and the obligation of ethnographers to question their assumptions and approaches. The team of leading contributors put forward a positive programme for future research in this highly original and invaluable guide to recent developments in mainstream anthropological theory.

About Author

The editors of this volume all completed doctoral studies in the Department of Social Anthropology at the University of Cambridge in the early 2000s. Amiria Henare conducted fieldwork in New Zealand and Scotland, and is now a curator in the Cambridge University Museum of Archaeology and Anthropology, lecturing in the Department of Social Anthropology. Martin Holbraad has studied money and divination in Cuba, and now lectures in Social Anthropology at University College London. Sari Wastell's has conducted research into Basque identity in Spain and divine kingship in Swaziland. She is a lecturer in the Department of Anthropology at Goldsmith's College in the University of London.


1. Thinking through things 2. `Smuk is king': the action of cigarettes in a Papua New Guinea Prison 3. Taonga Maori: encompassing rights and property in New Zealand 4. The `legal thing' in Swaziland: res judicata and divine kingship 5. Collection as a way of being 6. Separating and containing people and things in Mongolia 7. Talismans of thought: shamanist ontologies and extended cognition in northern Mongolia 8. Differentiation and encompassment: a critique of Alfred Gell's theory of the abduction of creativity 9. The power of powder: multiplicity and motion in the divinatory cosmology of Cuban Ifa

Product Details

  • ISBN13: 9781844720712
  • Format: Paperback
  • Number Of Pages: 248
  • ID: 9781844720712
  • weight: 386
  • ISBN10: 1844720713

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