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Description - Envisioning Power by Eric Robert Wolf

This text explores the historical relationship of ideas, power, and culture. Responding to anthropolgy's long reliance on a concept of culture that takes little account of power, it is argued that power is crucial in shaping the circumstances of cultural production. It also demonstrates that social-science notions of ideology incorporate power but disregard the ways ideas respond to cultural promptings connect through the medium of culture. Using three societies, Kwakiutl Indians of the Northwest Pacific coast, the Aztecs of pre-Hispanic Mexico and National Socialist Germany, to study, it asks how these societies faced tension posed by ecological, social, political, or psychological crisis, and prompted ideological responses that draw on distinctive, historically rooted cultural understandings. In each study it is analysed how the regnant ideology intertwines with power around the pivotal relationship that govern social labour.

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Book Details

ISBN: 9780520215825
ISBN-10: 0520215826
Format: Paperback
(229mm x 152mm x 19mm)
Pages: 310
Imprint: University of California Press
Publisher: University of California Press
Publish Date: 7-Jan-1999
Country of Publication: United States

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Author Biography - Eric Robert Wolf

Eric R. Wolf, (1923--1999) wrote Europe and the People Without History (UC Press), and numerous other books. He was Distinguished Professor of Anthropology (Emeritus) at H. Lehman College and Graduate School, City University of New York.

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