Knud Rasmussen's Fearless Journey into the Heart of The Arctic
Knud Rasmussen (1879–1933) was unique among Arctic explorers. Rejecting the elaborate equipment, extensive supplies and large teams employed by other expeditions, he travelled with a few Inuit assistants, learning from them how to live off the land. This first full-scale biography captures the Greenland-born ethnographer’s courage, charisma and sense of adventure, records his profound respect for Inuit culture, and charts his crowning achievement, a 20,000-mile odyssey by dog-sled from Greenland to Alaska.
The Human Age
The World Shaped By Us
Diane Ackerman may rue the destruction of the natural world, yet she is thrilled by human ingenuity and here contemplates nascent technologies – including those for body heat recycling, 3D-printed human tissue and carbon capture – that may yet save our planet and our species. Slightly off-mint.
How Compassion Made Us Human
The Evolutionary Origins of Tenderness, Trust and Morality
This groundbreaking survey of the ways in which material evidence, such as the earliest human art, sheds light on the emotions of our Stone Age ancestors argues that altruism and compassion played a key role in our evolution and the success of our species.
Shades of Difference
Mythologies of Skin Color in Early Modern England
Sujata Iyengar’s term ‘mythologies of color’ refers to a complex of early modern beliefs surrounding the significance of skin colour, whether white, black, red, green, yellow or transparent. She explores these cultural mythologies in their historical, geographical and literary contexts during the period when colonial expansion and the slave trade introduced Britons to more dark-skinned persons than they had previously encountered.
Watching the English
The Hidden Rules of English Behaviour
Convinced that there is such a thing as ‘Englishness’, the popular anthropologist Kate Fox looks beyond the ‘the ethnographic dazzle of superficial differences’ to reveal the unwritten rules that define English national identity and character. This is an updated edition of the 2004 international bestseller.
An Intellectual Biography
The Norwegian anthropologist Fredrik Barth (1928–2016) was one of the most influential social theorists of the 20th century. This biography by his friend and colleague Thomas Hylland Eriksen – himself a distinguished ethnographer – charts the development of Barth’s groundbreaking ideas on ethnicity in his untiring fieldwork. In its exploration of big issues such as unity and diversity, culture and relativism, art and science, the book compellingly communicates the magic of ethnography to the non-specialist reader.
History in Mighty Sounds
Musical Constructions of German National Identity 1848–1914
Highlighting connections between 19th-century German music and nationalism, this study focuses on works based on popular, mythologized versions of historical subject-matter, in particular the life of Barbarossa and the Roman legions’ annihilation at the Battle of the Teutoburg Forest. It explores how compositions in many musical genres participated in a project of shaping the nation’s future and how composers such as Max Bruch and Carl Reinecke responded to contemporary notions of gender, landscape and religion.
Prophecy and Power in the Ancient World
The female prophets known as sibyls were renowned across the Greco-Roman world and their pronouncements were considered a source of authoritative wisdom. Guillermo focuses on the stories that were told about four prominent sibyls, at Erythrae, Cumae, Delphi and Tibur. He also reflects on the wider cultural associations between women and prophecy and asks how the ancient pagan tradition was later fused with Christianity so successfully that sibyls feature in Michelangelo’s decoration of the Sistine Chapel.
Science, Society and Power
Environmental Knowledge and Policy in West Africa and the Caribbean
Focusing on environment, forestry and conservation sciences, this study explores the transformation in global science and its contrasting effects in Guinea, one of the world’s poorest countries, and the more prosperous Trinidad.
Nations are often regarded as fixed, natural entities, but most nation states have been consciously created in recent centuries, and France is no exception. Divided into three sections covering French history, experience and identity, this study examines the way that revolution, social conflict, war, occupation and resistance, colonialism and decolonization, religion, gender and popular culture have all shaped the evolution and reinvention of France to create the country we know today.
A History of Heads Lost and Heads Found
'A severed head can be many things: a loved one, a trophy, scientific data, criminal evidence, an educational prop, a religious relic, an artistic muse, a practical joke.' Larson surveys all these fates of human heads in a strange and often gruesome history that ranges from primitive tribes' shrunken heads to bizarre experiments in bringing guillotined heads back to life, and discusses issues such as the spectacle of public execution, the human face and the act of decapitation.
Realities, Myths, Ballads
In 1411, the ageing Donald of Islay, Lord of the Isles, invaded mainland Scotland with a huge, battle-hardened army, only to be fought to a standstill on the plateau of Harlaw, 14 miles from Aberdeen. This great battle left around 3,000 dead or wounded, yet beyond Aberdeenshire, it has faded from historical memory. This book brings Donald’s invasion and Harlaw back into view, with translations of contemporary records and ballads, later historical accounts, and myths and legends of Harlaw.
An Intimate History
Surveillance of our habits through CCTV and computer spyware has reached epidemic proportions and social media and TV allow us to fully indulge our passion for eavesdropping on other people, an impulse that John Locke argues is hard-wired into our make-up. This study investigates the deep-seated desire to know what's going on in the private lives of others, uncovering the biological drive behind it and its consequences across history and culture, from 16th-century voyeurism to Facebook and Twitter.
Berg Encyclopedia of World Dress and Fashion
Volume Seven: Australia, New Zealand and the Pacific Islands
Written for both academic and general readers, the volumes of the Berg Encyclopedia focus on the 19th to early 21st centuries and comprise essays on the full spectrum of issues relating to dress and body modification, with topics ranging from Maori moko to 'swimwear, surfwear and the bronzed body' in Australia. The 75 essays in this volume cover both First Nation and European dress in Australia and New Zealand, and Polynesia, Melanesia and Micronesia.
Berg Encyclopedia of World Dress and Fashion
Volume Four: South Asia and Southeast Asia
Written for both academic and general readers, the volumes of the Berg Encyclopedia focus on the 19th to early 21st centuries and comprise essays on the full spectrum of issues relating to dress and body modification, with topics ranging from tooth staining in the Philippines to catwalk fashion in Southeast Asia. In this volume, 63 essays cover 15 countries, including India, Pakistan, Thailand, Malaysia, Indonesia and the Philippines.
Rough and Tumble
Aggression, Hunting, and Human Evolution
Anthropologists have traditionally viewed a coupling of aggression and predation as the evolutionary milestone that brought about ambush hunting approximately two million years ago. But Rough and Tumble challenges this view, since aggressive attack was a hopeless tactic for humans who were smaller and slower-footed than their prey. The author uses fossils, archaeological evidence and studies of humans and other primates to argue that it was the advent of new hunting technologies that allowed humans to stalk and kill large game.
A Companion to Mexican Studies
With its unique fusion of the Aztec tradition, Christian iconography and modernism, Mexican art is powerful, distinctive and immediately recognizable. This scholarly but readable history traces its development from pre-Columbian times through the Spanish colonial period and revolution to the present day. Covering not only the visual arts but writing, theatre, music and dance, it takes in such great artists and writers as Diego Rivera, Frida Kahlo and Octavio Paz. With colour plates, maps, a chronology and extensive bibliography.
An Anthropology of Britain
What does it mean to live in Britain and to be ‘British’, and is an anthropology of Britain even a legitimate undertaking? Ranging across subjects as diverse as achieving collective identity on the Isle of Man, the London dance scene, leisure and change in a post-mining mining town, and Armenian and other diasporas, this volume of 15 essays establishes that an anthropology of Britain can set excellent standards of subtle ethnography and complex analysis.