The Comfort of Things
By (author) Daniel Miller
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Comfort of Things by Daniel Miller
Book DescriptionThe diversity of contemporary London is extraordinary, and begs to be better understood. Never before have so many people from such diverse backgrounds been free to mix and not to mix in close proximity to each other. But increasingly people's lives take place behind the closed doors of private houses. How can we gain an insight into what those lives are like today? Not television characters, not celebrities, but real people. How could one ever come to know perfect strangers? Danny Miller attempts to achieve this goal in this brilliant expose of a street in modern London. He leads us behind closed doors to thirty people who live there, showing their intimate lives, their aspirations and frustrations, their tragedies and accomplishments. He places the focus upon the things that really matter to the people he meets, which quite often turn out to be material things, the house, the dog, the music, the Christmas decorations. He creates a gallery of portraits, some comic, some tragic, some cubist, some impressionist, some bleak and some exuberant. We find that a random street in modern London contains the most extraordinary stories. Mass murderers and saints, the most charmed Christmas since Fanny and Alexander and the story of how a CD collection helped someone overcome heroin. Through this sensitive reading of the ordinary lives of ordinary people, Miller uncovers the orders and forms through which people make sense of their lives today. He shows just how much is to be gained when we stop lamenting what we think we used to be, and instead concentrate on what we are becoming now. He reveals above all the sadness of lives and the comfort of things.
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Book DetailsISBN: 9780745644035
(229mm x 152mm x 22mm)
Imprint: Polity Press
Publisher: Polity Press
Publish Date: 30-May-2008
Country of Publication: United Kingdom
Books By Author Daniel Miller
Webcam, Hardback (January 2014)
* The first book to explore the social meaning of the 'always on' webcam and the role it has come to play in our lives. * Using case studies from the UK and Trinidad and Tobago, the authors examine how webcams have become an integral part of people's everyday life.
Digital Anthropology, Paperback (October 2012)
This book brings together key anthropologists of digital culture to explore what it is to be human in the digital world. Using a range of case studies from Google Earth, to Second Life, to Facebook this is essential reading for students of anthropology, media studies, cultural studies and sociology.
Consumption and Its Consequences, Hardback (June 2012)
* A new book by one of the world s leading anthropologists and a leading figure in the study of material culture. * Brings together Miller s key writings on consumption, consumer capitalism and related topics. * The sequel to Miller s highly successful Stuff.
Blue Jeans, Paperback (February 2012)» View all books by Daniel Miller
Focuses on an everyday item - blue jeans - to learn what one simple article of clothing can tell us about our individual and social lives and challenging, by extension, the foundational anthropological presumption of the normative.
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Author Biography - Daniel Miller
Daniel Miller is Professor of Material Culture at University College London.
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