Occidentalism: Images of the West

By James G. Carrier | Go to book overview

Acknowledgements

This chapter has benefited from the critical comments of Janet Carsten, Chris Fuller, colleagues from the Centre for South Asian Studies in Edinburgh, and students from my postgraduate writing group. James Carrier not only pushed me to write it in the first place, he also forced me to try to turn an argument about Sri Lanka into a conclusion to this book. The flaws and simplifications are mine, the stimulus was his.


Notes
1
The group itself insists on the untranslatability of 'chintanaya', which from their position is precisely the point: even their name is testimony to the unique genius of Sinhala culture. My colleague Paul Dundas tells me that, in fact, 'cintanaya' is an unremarkable Sanskrit term for 'that which should be known'. For simplicity's sake I have retained the newspaper transliteration of what would otherwise be 'jatika cintanaya'.
2
At the same time, the other key figure in the movement, the novelist Amarasekera, dismissed multiculturalism as 'a cocktail' ( Sunday Observer 1991).
3
To be fair, Kapferer acknowledges the presence of 'modern' or 'Western' traits like individualism in some areas of life in Sri Lanka ( Kapferer 1988: 79- 80), but the main thrust of his argument is the analysis of a common cultural 'logic' at the heart of the old chronicles and in the hearts of contemporary zealots, and this analysis in turn rests on repeated contrasts with the West and Western rationalism ( 1988:140-1).
4
Kapferer's comparison is based on a much more demotic understanding of the West than either Dumont or Marriott; even so, his discussion of mateship and egalitarian values in Australia is far thinner and less ethnographically nuanced than e.g. his own earlier work on healing rituals in Sri Lanka (cf. Kapferer 1983).
5
This position is explicit in the title of the last section of Dumont's introduction to Homo Hierarchicus, 'The necessity of hierarchy' ( Dumont 1980: 19- 20), and in his comparison of caste and racism ( 1980: 247-66).
6
In India, Dumont's version of caste and South Asian society has most often been criticized not from a culturological, but from a Marxist, position. A proper consideration of occidentalism in South Asian Marxism is beyond the scope of this chapter.
7
Cumaratunga's major writings are only available in Sinhala; Wickremesinghe wrote and published extensively in both Sinhala and English; a Sinhala translation of Coomaraswamy only major work on Sinhala culture, Medieval Sinhalese Art, was sponsored by the government after Independence. My interpretation of Coomaraswamy is heavily dependent on so-far unpublished research by James Brow, while my comments on Cumaratunga are based on K. N. O. Dharmadasa ( 1992: 261-89).

-254-

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Occidentalism: Images of the West
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • Title Page iii
  • Preface vii
  • Acknowledgements xi
  • Contents xiii
  • Introduction 1
  • Acknowledgements 29
  • Notes 29
  • Notes 30
  • 1: Cargoism and Occidentalism 33
  • References 57
  • 2: The Kabyle and the French: Occidentalism in Bourdieu's Theory of Practice 61
  • Acknowledgements 81
  • Notes 81
  • Notes 82
  • 3: Maussian Occidentalism: Gift and Commodity Systems 85
  • Acknowledgements 103
  • Notes 103
  • References 104
  • 4: Occidentalism as a Cottage Industry: Representing the Autochthonous 'Other' in British and Irish Rural Studies 109
  • Notes 128
  • Notes 130
  • 5: Imaging the Other in Japanese Advertising Campaigns 135
  • Acknowledgements 157
  • Acknowledgements 158
  • Acknowledgements 158
  • 6: Duelling Currencies in East New Britain: The Construction of Shell Money as National Cultural Property 161
  • Acknowledgements 182
  • Acknowledgements 183
  • References 187
  • 7: The Colonial, the Imperial, and the Creation of the 'European' in Southern Africa 192
  • Notes 214
  • Notes 215
  • 8: Hellenism and Occidentalism: The Permutations of Performance in Greek Bourgeois Identity 218
  • Notes 230
  • Notes 232
  • 9: Occidentalism in the East: The Uses of the West in the Politics and Anthropology of South Asia 234
  • Notes 254
  • Notes 255
  • Notes on Contributors 258
  • Index 261
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