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Media Worlds: Anthropology on New Terrainby Faye D. Ginsburg
Synopses & Reviews
After years of avoiding the subject, anthropologists have finally discovered that media can be profitably studied ethnographically and that anthropology of media is not only possible but essential. Media Worlds is a collection of groundbreaking essays by top-notch scholars.aJay Ruby, author of Picturing Culture: Explorations of Film and AnthropologyNot just a book, but the book on the anthropology of the media. The collection works not just as an assemblage but from a sense that every paper adds another perspective to the whole.aDanny Miller, co-author of The Internet: An Ethnographic ApproachThe anthropology of media is in many ways the most dynamic domain of the discipline today. Media Worlds will establish itself immediately as the canonical volume in this long overdue area of study. Its rigorous ethnographic studies of the production, distribution, and reception of film, television, and electronic media around the world will also encourage media and cultural studies to relinquish the exclusivity they afford to the 'text' and to attend to the global social practices of media in toto. An outstanding work.aLucien Taylor, co-author of Cross-Cultural Filmmaking: A Handbook for Making Documentary and Ethnographic Films and VideosThe strength of this lovely collection is in the diversity and range of the case materials that it brings together under one cover.aMichael M. J. Fischer, coauthor of Anthropology as Cultural Critique: An Experimental Moment in the Human SciencesContemporary media studies allow us to continue examining anthropology's traditional subjects in promising new ways. This strong and comprehensive collection by the key figures who have pioneered media studies in anthropology both focuses and surveys the field. As a much needed teaching resource, it will stimulate the proliferation of culture and media courses and will transform the many courses that are built on the identification of peoples as indigenous, minority, or ethnic.aGeorge E. Marcus, editor of the series Late Editions: Cultural Studies for the End of the CenturyMedia Worlds is a compelling argument for how and why media matters in anthropology and the contemporary world. The exciting array of field-defining work bridges anthropology and film, TV, and radio media. Critically revising earlier paradigms for an anthropology of (visual) communication, the authors argue for new and forceful concerns with media activism, representation, nationalism and transnationalism, diasporas, and social engagements with technology.aSteven Feld, Producer of Voices of the Rainforest and Professor of Music and Anthropology, Columbia UniversityIt is amazing that this is the first book of its kind. One would think that an anthropological approach, placing the media squarely within the rich and diverse contexts of social relations and everyday life, would long have been integral to media studies. Not so This wonderful book provides an overdue correction. As the essays here show, we cannot understand lives and societies without understanding the mediascapes we inhabit. This is compulsive reading aIen Ang, author of Living Room Wars: Rethinking Media Audiences for a Postmodern WorldThis landmark collection maps and motivates the anthropological voice in media studies by locating the media in worlds of practice, sentiment, debate, and dissent. Using such vivid examples as the image management of the Dalai Lama and the social organization of Nigerian cinema theatres, the authors remind us that media machineries are no more magical than the social worlds they inhabit and project. Media Worlds will be a boon to scholars and teachers in media studies, anthropology, and global cultural studies.aArjun Appadurai, author of Modernity at Large: Cultural Dimensions of Globalization
A pathbreaking collection of essays in the ethnography of media--a burgeoning new area in anthropology. The co-editors are powerhouses, as are the contributors.
Table of Contents
Machine generated contents note: INTRODUCTION 2 — I. CULTURAL ACTIVISM AND MINORITY CLAIMS — 1. Screen Memories: Resignifying the Traditional in Indigenous Media — FayeD. Ginsburg 39 — 2. Visual Media and the Primitivist Perplex: Colonial Fantasies, Indigenous Imagination, and Advocacy in North America — Harald E. L. Prins 58 — 3. Representation, Politics, and Cultural Imagination in Indigenous Video: General Points and Kayapo Examples — Terence Turner 75 — 4. Spectacles of Difference: Cultural Activism and the Mass Mediation of Tibet — Meg McLagan 90 --II. THE CULTURAL POLITICS OF NATION-STATES — 5. Egyptian Melodrama-Technology of the Modern Subject? — Lila Abu-Lughod zx5 — 6. Epic Contests: Television and Religious Identity in India — Purnima Mankekar z34 — 7. The National Picture: Thai Media and Cultural Identity — Annette Hamilton 52 — 8. Television, Time, and the National Imaginary in Belize — Richard R Wilk 171 — III. TRANSNATIONAL CIRCUITS — 9. Mass Media and Transnational Subjectivity in Shanghai: Notes on (Re)Cosmopolitanism in a Chinese Metropolis — Mayfair Mei-hui Yang 189 — 10. A Marshall Plan of the Mind: The Political Economy of a Kazakh Soap Opera — Ruth Mandel 201 — 11. Mapping Hmong Media in Diasporic Space — Louisa Schein 229 --IV. THE SOCIAL SITES OF PRODUCTION — 12. Putting American Public Television Documentary in Its Places — Barry Dornfeld 247 — 13. Culture in the Ad World: Producing the Latin Look — Arlene Ddvila 264 — 14. "And Yet My Heart Is Still Indian": The Bombay Film Industry and the (H)Indianization of Hollywood — Tejaswini Ganti 281 — 15. Arrival Scenes: Complicity and Media Ethnography in the Bolivian Public Sphere — JeffD. Himpele 301 --V. THE SOCIAL LIFE OF TECHNOLOGY — 16. The Materiality of Cinema Theaters in Northern Nigeria — Brian Larkin 319 — 17. Mobile Machines and Fluid Audiences: Rethinking Reception through Zambian Radio Culture — Debra Spitulnik 337 — 18. The Indian Work of Art in the Age of Mechanical Reproduction: Or, What Happens When Peasants "Get Hold" of Images — ChristopherPinney 355 — 19. Live or Dead? Televising Theater in Bali — Mark Hobart 370 — 20. A Room with a Voice: Mediation and Mediumship in Thailand's Information Age — Rosalind C. Morris 383.
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History and Social Science » Anthropology » Cultural Anthropology