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Archive for the ‘anthropology’ Category

Beyond Ainu Studies: Changing Academic and Public Perspectives

Posted by UH Press Marketing on 21 February 2014

Hudson-BeyondAinuStudiesIn 2008, 140 years after it had annexed Ainu lands, the Japanese government shocked observers by finally recognizing Ainu as an Indigenous people. In this moment of unparalleled political change, it was Uzawa Kanako, a young Ainu activist, who signalled the necessity of moving beyond the historical legacy of “Ainu studies.” Mired in a colonial mindset of abject academic practices, Ainu Studies was an umbrella term for an approach that claimed scientific authority vis-à-vis Ainu, who became its research objects. As a result of this legacy, a latent sense of suspicion still hangs over the purposes and intentions of non-Ainu researchers.

This major new volume seeks to re-address the role of academic scholarship in Ainu social, cultural, and political affairs. Placing Ainu firmly into current debates over Indigeneity, Beyond Ainu Studies provides a broad yet critical overview of the history and current status of Ainu research.

Posted in anthropology, Asia, ethnography, history, Japan, political science | Tagged: , , | Comments Off

The Hermit’s Hut: Architecture and Asceticism in India

Posted by UH Press Marketing on 15 January 2014

Ashraf-Hermit'sHutAlthough architecture continually responds to ascetic compulsions, as in its frequent encounter with the question of excess and less, it is typically considered separate from asceticism. In contrast, The Hermit’s Hut offers original insight and explores the rich and mutual ways in which asceticism and architecture are played out in each other’s practices. Relying primarily on Buddhist materials, author Kazi K. Ashraf provides a complex narrative that stems from the simple structure of the hermit’s hut, showing how the significance of the hut resonates widely and how the question of dwelling is central to ascetic imagination. In exploring the conjunctions of architecture and asceticism, he breaks new ground by presenting ascetic practice as fundamentally an architectural project, namely the fabrication of a “last” hut.

This innovative book weaves together the fields of architecture, anthropology, religion, and philosophy to offer multidisciplinary and historical insights. It will appeal to readers with diverse interests and in a variety of disciplines—whether one is interested in the history of ascetic architecture in India, the concept of “home” in ancient India, or the theme of the body as building.

November 2013 | 240 pages | 105 illustrations
ISBN: 978-0-8248-3583-5 | $50.00 | Cloth

Spatial Habitus: Making and Meaning in Asia’s Architecture

Posted in anthropology, archaeology, architecture, art & visual culture, Buddhism, philosophy, religion, South Asia | Tagged: , , | Comments Off

Ancient Ryukyu: An Archaeological Study of Island Communities

Posted by UH Press Marketing on 20 December 2013

Ancient Ryukyu explores 30,000 years of human occupation in the Ryukyu Islands, from the earliest human presence in the region up to A.D. 1609 and the emergence of the Ryukyu Kingdom. It focuses on the unique geopolitical position of the islands, their environment, and the many human communities whose historical activities can be discerned. Drawing on the impressive work of dozens of local archaeologists who have brought the islands’ early history to life, Richard Pearson describes explorers and sojourners and colonists who arrived thousands of years ago, and their ancient trade links to Japan, Korea, and China.

Through analysis of work completed at about 120 sites described in dozens of rare Japanese government reports with limited circulation, Pearson is able to show that many modern features of the culture, politics, and economy of the Ryukyu Islands have very deep roots.

“This extremely important study in Pacific and island archaeology makes use of the huge database generated by Okinawan archaeology in the postwar era and places the Okinawan islands in the context of current theoretical debates within island archaeology in the Pacific and beyond. It is also a major study of premodern Okinawa. With its many valuable overviews and discussions, as well as its original analyses and interpretations, it will undoubtedly become the definitive text in English.” —Mark Hudson, Nishikyushu University

November 2013 | 432 pages | 36 illustrations | 20 maps
ISBN: 978-0-8248-3712-9 | $55.00 | Cloth

Posted in anthropology, archaeology, Asia, history, Okinawa | Tagged: , , | Comments Off

The Kanak Awakening: The Rise of Nationalism in New Caledonia

Posted by UH Press Marketing on 13 December 2013

In The Kanak Awakening, David Chappell examines the rise in New Caledonia of rival identity formations that became increasingly polarized in the 1970s. It explores in particular the emergence of activist discourses in favor of Kanak cultural nationalism and land reform, multiracial progressive sovereignty, or a combination of both aspirations. Most studies of modern New Caledonia focus on the violent 1980s uprising, which left deep scars on local memories and identities. Yet the genesis of that rebellion began with a handful of university students who painted graffiti on public buildings in 1969, and such activists discussed many of the same issues that face the country’s leadership today.

“This is a very valuable contribution to the literature on New Caledonia’s recent history and the search for Kanak identity in a world of decolonization. The author shows an excellent command of the literature, not only the discussions leading up to the ‘Melanesia 2000’ event but the long archaeological and anthropological record. It is a valuable synthesis of the ways in which the political and the cultural have connected to produce and interesting experiment of decolonization without independence.” —John Kim Munholland, Professor Emeritus, Department of History, University of Minnesota

November 2013 | 352 pages | 7 illustrations
ISBN: 978-0-8248-3818-8 | $60.00 | Cloth
Pacific Islands Monograph Series No. 27

Posted in anthropology, development, ethnography, history, Melanesia, Pacific, Pacific Islands studies, political science | Tagged: | Comments Off

Dilemmas of Adulthood: Japanese Women and the Nuances of Long-Term Resistance

Posted by UH Press Marketing on 11 December 2013

Dilemmas of AdulthoodIn Dilemmas of Adulthood, Nancy Rosenberger investigates the nature of long-term resistance in a longitudinal study of more than fifty Japanese women over two decades. Between 25 and 35 years of age when first interviewed in 1993, the women represent a generation straddling the stable roles of post-war modernity and the risky but exciting possibilities of late modernity.

Rosenberger’s analysis establishes long-term resistance as a vital type of social change in late modernity where the sway of media, global ideas, and friends vies strongly with the influence of family, school, and work. Women are at the nexus of these contradictions, dissatisfied with post-war normative roles in family, work, and leisure and yet—in Japan as elsewhere—committed to a search for self that shifts uneasily between self-actualization and selfishness. The women’s rich narratives and conversations recount their ambivalent defiance of social norms and attempts to live diverse lives as acceptable adults. Dilemmas of Adulthood is essential for anyone wishing to understand how Japanese women have maneuvered their lives in the economic decline and pushed for individuation in the 1990s and 2000s.

November 2013, 224 pages, 2 illustrations
$24.00; ISBN: 978-0-8248-3696-2, Cloth
$50.00; ISBN: 978-0-8248-3887-4, Paper

Posted in anthropology, Asia, cultural studies, gender studies, Japan, sociology, women's studies | Leave a Comment »

Regionalizing Culture: The Political Economy of Japanese Popular Culture in Asia

Posted by UH Press Marketing on 10 December 2013

Regionalizing CultureThis ambitious work provides a comprehensive, empirically grounded study of the production, circulation, and reception of Japanese popular culture in Asia. While many studies typically employ an interactive approach that focuses on the “meaning” of popular culture from an anthropological or cultural studies point of view, Regionalizing Culture emphasizes that the consumption side and contextual meaning of popular culture are not the only salient factors in accounting for its proliferation. The production side and organizational aspects are also important. In addition to presenting individual case studies, the book offers a big-picture view of the dramatic changes that have taken place in popular culture production and circulation in Asia over the past two decades.

“This highly informative book provides a comprehensive examination of the successful deployment of Japanese popular culture throughout East Asia. Surveying a broad spectrum of cultural products, including games, animation, and TV drama, it argues both that there is a Japanese model to popular cultural production and that that model of cultural commodification has contributed to the regionalization of East Asia. The use of extensive interviews with diverse stakeholders, including both industry personnel and audience, provides a fresh approach to the subject that will satisfy a growing interest in Japanese popular culture in university curriculum.” —Lisa Leung, Lingnan University, Hong Kong

October 2013, 256 pages, 13 illustrations
$42.00; ISBN: 978-0-8248-3694-8, Cloth

Posted in anthropology, art & visual culture, Asia, cultural studies, Japan, media, sociology | Leave a Comment »

Mutiny and Aftermath: James Morrison’s Account of the Mutiny on the Bounty and the Island of Tahiti

Posted by UH Press Marketing on 4 December 2013

Smith&Thomas-Mutiny-and-AftermathThe mutiny on the Bounty was one of the most controversial events of eighteenth-century maritime history. Mutiny and Aftermath publishes a full and absorbing narrative of the events by one of the participants, the boatswain’s mate James Morrison, who tells the story of the mounting tensions over the course of the voyage out to Tahiti, the fascinating encounter with Polynesian culture there, and the shocking drama of the event itself. It is based directly on a close study of Morrison’s original manuscript, one of the treasures of the Mitchell Library in Sydney, Australia.

The editors, Vanessa Smith and Nicholas Thomas, assess and explain Morrison’s observations of Islander culture and social relations, both on Tubuai in the Austral Islands and on Tahiti itself. The book fully identifies the Tahitian people and places that Morrison refers to and makes this remarkable text accessible for the first time to all those interested in an extraordinary chapter of early Pacific history.

“Morrison’s Account of the Mutiny on the Bounty has been known to scholars and students through Owen Rutter’s 1935 edition. Smith and Thomas draw on all the relevant scholarship in the seventy-five years since this edition, as well as their own distinguished research and expert understanding of Pacific cultures, to provide readers with an impeccable work of scholarship that will be an essential point of reference for all future writing on Tahiti at the time of first contact as well as on the Bounty mutiny itself.”—Rod Edmond, University of Kent

October 2013 / ISBN 978-0-8248-3676-4 / $45.00 cloth

Posted in anthropology, archaeology, history, Pacific, Polynesia | Tagged: , , , , | Comments Off

Michael French Smith at the National Press Club’s Book Fair & Author Night

Posted by UH Press Marketing on 17 November 2013

NatlPressClub-bookfair&authorsOn Tuesday, November 19, 5:30-8:30 p.m., the National Press Club will hold its 36th Annual Book Fair & Author Night at the NPC headquarters in Washington, D.C. (529 14th Street NW). UH Press author Michael French Smith will sign copies of his latest book, A Faraway, Familiar Place: An Anthropologist Returns to Papua New Guinea, joining more than 90 other writers, including national luminaries Alice McDermott, Jim Lehrer, Mark Leibovich, Gov. Bill Richardson, David Wiesner, and many others, in this exciting literary event.

The book fair is open to the public with ticket purchase and is a fundraiser for the NPC’s Journalism Institute. Books will be sold in partnership with independent D.C. bookstore Politics & Prose. For more details, click here.

Posted in anthropology, author events, bookstores, general interest, Papua New Guinea | Tagged: , | Comments Off

Colonialism, Maasina Rule, and the Origins of Malaitan Kastom

Posted by UH Press Marketing on 15 October 2013

Colonialism, Maasina RuleColonialism, Maasina Rule, and the Origins of Malaitan Kastom is a political history of the island of Malaita in the British Solomon Islands Protectorate from 1927, when the last violent resistance to colonial rule was crushed, to 1953 and the inauguration of the island’s first representative political body, the Malaita Council. At the book’s heart is a political movement known as Maasina Rule, which dominated political affairs in the southeastern Solomons for many years after World War II. The movement’s ideology, kastom, was grounded in the determination that only Malaitans themselves could properly chart their future through application of Malaitan sensibilities and methods, free from British interference.

Kastom promoted a radical transformation of Malaitan lives by sweeping social engineering projects and alternative governing and legal structures. When the government tried to suppress Maasina Rule through force, its followers brought colonial administration on the island to a halt for several years through a labor strike and massive civil resistance actions that overflowed government prison camps. David Akin draws on extensive archival and field research to present a practice-based analysis of colonial officers’ interactions with Malaitans in the years leading up to and during Maasina Rule.

2013, 552 pages, 21 illustrations, 3 maps
$59.00; ISBN: 978-0-8248-3814-0, Cloth
Pacific Islands Monograph Series  (No. 26)

Posted in anthropology, cultural studies, development, ethnography, government, history, Melanesia, Micronesia, Pacific, Pacific Islands studies, political science, Polynesia, sociology | Leave a Comment »

Sounding Out Heritage: Cultural Politics and the Social Practice of Quan Họ Folk Song in Northern Vietnam

Posted by UH Press Marketing on 15 October 2013

Tang China in Multi-Polar Asia

Sounding Out Heritage explores the cultural politics that have shaped the recent history and practice of a unique style of folk song that originated in Bắc Ninh province, northern Vietnam. The book delves into the rich and complicated history of quan họ, showing the changes it has undergone over the last sixty years as it moved from village practice onto the professional stage. Interweaving an examination of folk music, cultural nationalism, and cultural heritage with an in-depth ethnographic account of the changing social practice of quan họ folk song, author Lauren Meeker presents a vivid and historically contextualized picture of the quan họ “soundscape.”

Village practitioners, ordinary people who love to sing quan họ, must now negotiate increased attention from those outside the village and their own designation as “living treasures.” Professional singers, with their different performance styles and representational practices, have been incorporated into the quan họ soundscape in an effort to highlight and popularize the culture of Bắc Ninh province in the national context. Sounding Out Heritage offers an in-depth account of the impact of cultural politics on the lives and practices of quan họ folk singers in Vietnam and shows compellingly how a tradition can mean many things to many people.

2013, 200 pages, 18 illustrations
$45.00 ISBN: 978-0-8248-3568-2, Cloth
Southeast Asia: Politics, Meaning, and Memory

Posted in anthropology, art & visual culture, cultural studies, ethnography, general interest, sociology, Southeast Asia, theater, Vietnam | Leave a Comment »

 
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