Star Wars Sale
 
 

Special Offers see all

Enter to WIN!

Weekly drawing for $100 credit. Subscribe to PowellsBooks.news for a chance to win.
Privacy Policy

More at Powell's


Recently Viewed clear list


Original Essays | June 20, 2014

Lauren Owen: IMG The Other Vampire



It's a wild and thundery night. Inside a ramshackle old manor house, a beautiful young girl lies asleep in bed. At the window, a figure watches... Continue »
  1. $18.90 Sale Hardcover add to wish list

    The Quick

    Lauren Owen 9780812993271

spacer
Qualifying orders ship free.
$45.25
New Hardcover
Ships in 1 to 3 days
Add to Wishlist
available for shipping or prepaid pickup only
Available for In-store Pickup
in 7 to 12 days
Qty Store Section
1 Remote Warehouse Ethnic Studies- General

This title in other editions

Syrian Episodes: Sons, Fathers, and an Anthropologist in Aleppo

by

Syrian Episodes: Sons, Fathers, and an Anthropologist in Aleppo Cover

 

Synopses & Reviews

Publisher Comments:

When Princeton anthropologist John Borneman arrived in Syria's second-largest city in 2004 as a visiting Fulbright professor, he took up residence in what many consider a "rogue state" on the frontline of a "clash of civilizations" between the Orient and the West. Hoping to understand intimate interactions of religious, political, and familial authority in this secular republic, Borneman spent much time among different men, observing and becoming part of their everyday lives. Syrian Episodes is the striking result.

Recounting his experience of living and lecturing in Aleppo, Syria's second-largest city, John Borneman offers deft, first-person stories of the longings and discontents expressed by Syrian sons and fathers, as well as a prescient analysis of the precarious power held by the regime, its relation to domestic authority, and the conditions of its demise. Combining literary imagination and anthropological insight, the book's discrete narratives converge in an unforgettable portrait of contemporary culture in Aleppo.

We read of romantic seductions, rumors of spying, the play of light in rooms, the bargaining of tourists in bazaars, and an attack of wild dogs. With unflinching honesty and frequent humor, Borneman describes his encounters with students and teachers, customers and merchants, and women and families, many of whom are as intrigued with the anthropologist as he is with them. Refusing to patronize those he meets or to minimize his differences with them, Borneman provokes his interlocutors, teasing out unexpected confidences, comic responses, and mutual misunderstandings. He engages the curiosity and desire of encounter and the possibility of ethical conduct that is willing to expose cultural differences.

Combining literary imagination and anthropological insight, Syrian Episodes offers an unforgettable portrait of contemporary culture in Aleppo.

Review:

"...a book startling in its frankness about the Princeton professor's friendly, frustrating, and even flirtatious encounters in Syria's second-largest city." Nina C. Ayoub, Chronicle of Higher Education

Review:

"Part travel book, part social anthropology, it is a fascinating account of the everyday lives of ordinary Syrian men." Sydney Morning Herald

Synopsis:

"Syrian Episodes, a novel and seductive mix of conversation, description, and interpretation, radiates happily from the small to the big picture. The dynamics of desire-of mutual attraction fueled by difference; of buying, selling, and collecting; of eating, living, teaching, and traveling in a new environment-structure each of the book's episodes. It doesn't avoid the anguish and risks of encountering people and persuading them to accept us. Simply put, Syrian Episodes comes at a good time to help give shape to an anthropology that posits human encounters as a rich source of knowledge that the reading of texts, no matter how sophisticated, can't provide."--Abdellah Hammoudi, author of A Season in Mecca

"John Borneman's Syrian Episodes is an exquisite and compulsively readable account of a picaresque sojourn in Aleppo, Syria. The book raises the nervous matter of experience in anthropology, troubles the bad faith of much ethnographic intention, and develops an approach that refuses to patronize. This is one of the more exciting--and ethically and intellectually demanding--works of anthropology that I have read in years, and also among the most beautiful. There is no other book like it."--Lawrence Cohen, University of California, Berkeley

Synopsis:

When Princeton anthropologist John Borneman arrived in Syria's second-largest city in 2004 as a visiting Fulbright professor, he took up residence in what many consider a "rogue state" on the frontline of a "clash of civilizations" between the Orient and the West. Hoping to understand intimate interactions of religious, political, and familial authority in this secular republic, Borneman spent much time among different men, observing and becoming part of their everyday lives. Syrian Episodes is the striking result.

Recounting his experience of living and lecturing in Aleppo, Syria's second-largest city, John Borneman offers deft, first-person stories of the longings and discontents expressed by Syrian sons and fathers, as well as a prescient analysis of the precarious power held by the regime, its relation to domestic authority, and the conditions of its demise. Combining literary imagination and anthropological insight, the book's discrete narratives converge in an unforgettable portrait of contemporary culture in Aleppo.

We read of romantic seductions, rumors of spying, the play of light in rooms, the bargaining of tourists in bazaars, and an attack of wild dogs. With unflinching honesty and frequent humor, Borneman describes his encounters with students and teachers, customers and merchants, and women and families, many of whom are as intrigued with the anthropologist as he is with them. Refusing to patronize those he meets or to minimize his differences with them, Borneman provokes his interlocutors, teasing out unexpected confidences, comic responses, and mutual misunderstandings. He engages the curiosity and desire of encounter and the possibility of ethical conduct that is willing to expose cultural differences.

Combining literary imagination and anthropological insight, Syrian Episodes offers an unforgettable portrait of contemporary culture in Aleppo.

Table of Contents

List of Illustrations vii

Preface ix

Acknowledgments xxix

Chapter I: P Aleppo 1

"Prayer is better than sleep" 1

Imad's Japanese Girlfriend 7

Farce 11

"I would rather have children than fly" 13

"Once you love deeply, you never forget" 21

"My father says he saves for me" 23

"As long as she gets along with me, she will have no problems with my mother" 26

"Do you desire your mother?" 29

Traffic, or the Normal Order of Things 31

Preparing to Teach 42

Administrative Pleasantries 43

"But we are homophobic!" 52

"So, what do you think of Muslims?" 62

"I'd like to be the next president" 68

"The religious people see this and hate it, but they cannot turn it off" 74

"God will tell us when we have to do something" 84

"Kiss Daddy! Kiss Daddy!" 88

Chapter II: P The Souk 96

"Come into my shop and let me take you" 96

"Do you have a brother?" 100

"Ossi oder NorMAL?" 103

The Souk's Logic of Exchange 107

Fathers, Sons, Brothers, and Inheritance 112

Dream Collector 115

Dream of the Mistress 117

"How great is my disappointment when I see my dreams breaking down" 119

"Every woman thinks I only want to sleep with her" 123

Cell Phone, Cassettes, String Underwear 127

"That is fieldwork!" 128

"A father, perhaps a brother" 130

Fathers and Sons 145

"It is a blessing" 149

The Rumor 153

Chapter III: P Syria 156

"These are my children" 156

Aleppian Food, in Public 162

Obtaining an Exit Visa 166

The Ba'ath Party 169

Student Radicals 175

Teaching Anthropology and American Culture 178

Cat on a Hot Tin Roof 187

Wild Dog Attack 190

Chapter IV: P Reflections on Teaching and Learning in Syria 192

Pedagogy 192

Lectures 194

Films 196

Coda: January 2006 200

Further Reading 225

Index 233

Product Details

ISBN:
9780691128870
Author:
Borneman, John
Publisher:
Princeton University Press
Location:
Princeton
Subject:
Ethnology
Subject:
Anthropology - Cultural
Subject:
Fathers and sons
Subject:
Islamic Studies
Subject:
Ethnic Studies
Subject:
Anthropology
Subject:
Middle Eastern Studies
Subject:
Philosophy, Arab
Subject:
Ethnology - Syria - Aleppo
Subject:
anthropology;cultural anthropology
Copyright:
Publication Date:
April 2007
Binding:
HARDCOVER
Grade Level:
College/higher education:
Language:
English
Illustrations:
49 halftones
Pages:
280
Dimensions:
9 x 6 in

Other books you might like

  1. Hanging Out in the Virtual Pub Used Trade Paper $24.50
  2. Gender and the South China Miracle Used Trade Paper $11.95

Related Subjects

History and Social Science » Anthropology » Cultural Anthropology
History and Social Science » Politics » General
History and Social Science » Sociology » Islamic Studies

Syrian Episodes: Sons, Fathers, and an Anthropologist in Aleppo New Hardcover
0 stars - 0 reviews
$45.25 In Stock
Product details 280 pages Princeton University Press - English 9780691128870 Reviews:
"Review" by , "...a book startling in its frankness about the Princeton professor's friendly, frustrating, and even flirtatious encounters in Syria's second-largest city."
"Review" by , "Part travel book, part social anthropology, it is a fascinating account of the everyday lives of ordinary Syrian men."
"Synopsis" by , "Syrian Episodes, a novel and seductive mix of conversation, description, and interpretation, radiates happily from the small to the big picture. The dynamics of desire-of mutual attraction fueled by difference; of buying, selling, and collecting; of eating, living, teaching, and traveling in a new environment-structure each of the book's episodes. It doesn't avoid the anguish and risks of encountering people and persuading them to accept us. Simply put, Syrian Episodes comes at a good time to help give shape to an anthropology that posits human encounters as a rich source of knowledge that the reading of texts, no matter how sophisticated, can't provide."--Abdellah Hammoudi, author of A Season in Mecca

"John Borneman's Syrian Episodes is an exquisite and compulsively readable account of a picaresque sojourn in Aleppo, Syria. The book raises the nervous matter of experience in anthropology, troubles the bad faith of much ethnographic intention, and develops an approach that refuses to patronize. This is one of the more exciting--and ethically and intellectually demanding--works of anthropology that I have read in years, and also among the most beautiful. There is no other book like it."--Lawrence Cohen, University of California, Berkeley

"Synopsis" by , When Princeton anthropologist John Borneman arrived in Syria's second-largest city in 2004 as a visiting Fulbright professor, he took up residence in what many consider a "rogue state" on the frontline of a "clash of civilizations" between the Orient and the West. Hoping to understand intimate interactions of religious, political, and familial authority in this secular republic, Borneman spent much time among different men, observing and becoming part of their everyday lives. Syrian Episodes is the striking result.

Recounting his experience of living and lecturing in Aleppo, Syria's second-largest city, John Borneman offers deft, first-person stories of the longings and discontents expressed by Syrian sons and fathers, as well as a prescient analysis of the precarious power held by the regime, its relation to domestic authority, and the conditions of its demise. Combining literary imagination and anthropological insight, the book's discrete narratives converge in an unforgettable portrait of contemporary culture in Aleppo.

We read of romantic seductions, rumors of spying, the play of light in rooms, the bargaining of tourists in bazaars, and an attack of wild dogs. With unflinching honesty and frequent humor, Borneman describes his encounters with students and teachers, customers and merchants, and women and families, many of whom are as intrigued with the anthropologist as he is with them. Refusing to patronize those he meets or to minimize his differences with them, Borneman provokes his interlocutors, teasing out unexpected confidences, comic responses, and mutual misunderstandings. He engages the curiosity and desire of encounter and the possibility of ethical conduct that is willing to expose cultural differences.

Combining literary imagination and anthropological insight, Syrian Episodes offers an unforgettable portrait of contemporary culture in Aleppo.

spacer
spacer
  • back to top
Follow us on...




Powell's City of Books is an independent bookstore in Portland, Oregon, that fills a whole city block with more than a million new, used, and out of print books. Shop those shelves — plus literally millions more books, DVDs, and gifts — here at Powells.com.