ANT102: Socio-Cultural Anthropology

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University of Toronto Mississauga
Andrea Muehlebache

ANT102: Socio-Cultural Anthropology Lecture #1: “We [anthropologists] have been the first to insist on a number of things: that the world does not divide into the pious and the superstitious; that there are sculptures in jungles and paintings in deserts; that political order is possible without centralized power and principled justice without codified rules; that the norms of reason were not fixed in Greece, the evolution of morality not consummated in England. Most important, we were the first to insist that we see the lives of others through lenses of our own grinding and that they look back on ours through ones of their own.” (Clifford Geertz) What is socio-cultural anthropology?  Culture, like language, operates through symbols (i.e. meaning is constantly conveyed in our every-day actions). What is culture?  “... that complex whole which includes knowledge, belief, art, morals, law, custom, and *other traits] acquired by man as a member of society”.  It is extremely important however to note that there is not (for instance) a neatly defined “Turkana culture” floating apart from the Turkana people. People make culture.  Culture, in short, is produced and reproduced through every-day meaningful practice in the realms of knowledge, beliefs, art, morals, law, customs, etc.  Winks are gestures that are symbolic in that they mean something. They are a form of communication.  What do they communicate? What do they mean?  Meaning is highly context dependent - you need to know layers and layers of (culturally specific) context to understand the meaning of a wink. You also need to know when to wink and when not to wink, whom to wink at and to what effect. Relativism  Relativism argues that truth and moral standards are not fixed and absolute for everyone but vary according to time, place, and context. Cultural Relativism  Socio-cultural anthropology holds that variations in human behavior must be understood within the cultural or social frameworks which contain them.  Human difference is deserving of respect and understanding in its own terms. Ethical Relativism  Ethical relativism is the notion that the business of making universal, cross-cultural, ethical judgments is both incoherent and unfair because moral values are a product of each culture’s unique developmental history, and can, therefore only be judged in relation to that history.  Anthropologists are therefore wary of universalizing judgments of other people’s moral values and ethical behavior. They are wary of Eurocentrism because of the long history that such tendencies have in the West’s relationship with the world.  Human rights? Women rights? “Anthropology demands the open-mindedness with which one must look and listen, record in astonishment and wonder that which one would not have been able to guess.” (Margaret Mead) “The purpose of anthropology is to make the world safe for human difference.” (Ruth Benedict) Cultural Relativism as Method  All human behavior can only be understood if it is culturally and historically contextualized.  One cannot understand cultural and social behavior from the vantage point of universal standards but must understand human variation “from the native’s point of view.”  Culture must be understood from within its own terms; from “within.” Cannibal Tours: How does one study a culture from “the native’s point of view”? From “within”?  There is more than one way to define yourself as a “person,” and these ways are culturally specific.  All cultures have theories of what it means to be “human,” and what it means to be a “human individual,” but these theories take different forms. “Western” conceptions of Self (Geertz)  “The Western conception of the person as a bounded, unique, more or less integrated motivational and cognitive universe, a center of awareness, emotion, judgment, and action organized into a distinctive whole and set contrastively both against other such wholes and against its social and natural background ... is a rather peculiar idea within the context of the world’s cultures”.  Remember Pormpuraaw community in North-Western Australia? The language spoken by this Aboriginal group does not use relative spatial terms such as left and right. They refer to objects in space only by their absolute cardinal directions, i.e. North, West, East, South, Southeast and so on. Of course, in English we also use cardinal directions terms but only for large spatial scales. But we would never say something like “There’s an ant on your southwest leg” or “the boy is standing to the south of Mary. Java “Be smooth inside out”  Less a sense of individuality in the “Western” sense. Instead, “inside” (batin) consists of a realm that is “identical across all individuals.” The “outside” world (lair) is again invariant from one individual to the next. The goal is to put these two independent realms in proper order and relationship.  The self thus exists of an inner world of stilled emotion and an outer world of shaped behavior. Individual emotions and outer behavior need to be properly performed. Bali “Stylization of self”  “Players perish, but the play does not. It is the performed rather than the performer that matters. Labels (birth-order markers, kinship terms, caste titles, sex indictors, teknonyms etc. are applied to individuals and “locate” them within a complex choreography or “cultural location”” within which persons (ideally) operate. Wilhelm Dilthey (1833-1911): Hermeneutics  The practice of interpretation: originally of religious texts, later of social situations, focusing on the meanings those involved ascribe to an event. Ethnography, in short, is an act of interpretation. (Ethnography, incidentally, is also the term used to refer to the books anthropologists write) Hermeneutic Circle  The characteristic intellectual movement and conceptual rhythm (method) of socio-cultural anthropology consists of “a continuous tacking between the most local of local detail and the most global of global structure in such a way as to bring them into simultaneous view ... Hopping back and forth between the whole conceived through the parts that actualize it and the part conceived through the whole that motivates them we seek to turn them into explanations of each other”  The hermeneutic circle refers to the idea that one’s understanding of the text/meaningful practice/cultural action as a whole is established by reference to the individual parts and one's understanding of each individual part by reference to the whole. Neither the whole text nor any individual part can be understood without reference to one another, and hence, it is a circle. All of this means that the meaning of a text (or any social phenomenon) must be found within its cultural, historical, and literary context.  Geertz used the tools of the hermeneutic circle to help us understand cultural senses of self through minute every-day practices (in his case, concepts, linguistic devices, labels etc.)  Java: The every-day concepts of batin and lair (as made manifest in statements such as “This is what you have to do smooth inside out”) offer insight into the larger question of “what is a person in Java.”  Bali: Labels (such as birth-order names (of which there are four)) indicates that individuals move through “a four-stage replication of an imperishable form.” So Geertz once again looked at something as small as a birth-order name to tell us about Balinese senses of personhood.  Morocco: Here, Geertz looked at the practice of nisba - and that people are known through their ethnic, territorial, familial etc. nisba - to talk about something much larger: Moroccan senses of “contextualized” personhood.  We could also look at something as tiny as a gesture with the hand - “Go to your left, Sir,” to come to conclusions about something as grand as “Western conceptions of self.”  Or we could look at a wink. Lecture #2: What is ethnographic fieldwork? What is the anthropological method? What kinds of knowledge do we produce? “Argonauts of the Western Pacific”  In this famous book, Malinowski describes an exchange system in Melanesia (especially the Trobriand Islands) by which shell products (necklaces, armbands) circulate among communities (hence “kula ring”) over thousands of miles and across hundreds of islands. It takes 4-5 years for an object to circulate back to its original owner.  The function of these exchanges of arm-shells and necklaces was to bind together vastly dispersed groups of people through an intricate system of obligation and reciprocation. Individuals to become quite famous by acquiring particularly valuable shells/necklaces through exchange. Items are ranked, which means that the people acquiring them can also acquire (and lose) rankings.  The brilliance of the book lies in the fact that socio-cultural anthropology is a science. Socio-Cultural Anthropology as Science  Ethnology has introduced law and order into what seemed chaotic and freakish. It has transformed for us the sensational, wild, and unaccountable world of “savages” into a number of well-ordered communities governed by law, behaving and thinking according to consistent principles ...  The time when we could tolerate accounts presenting us the native as a distorted, childish caricature of a human being has gone. This picture is false, and like many other falsehoods, it has been killed by Science. Socio-Cultural Anthropology as a “Holistic” Method  The ethnographer has to seriously and soberly cover the full extent of the phenomenon in each aspect of tribal culture studied; making no difference between what is commonplace or drab, ordinary, and what strikes him as astonishing and put-of-the-way. ... The whole area of tribal culture in all its aspects has to be gone over in research. The consistency, the law and order which obtain in each aspect make also for joining them into one coherent whole. Holism  Any approach that treats the whole as greater than the sum of its parts. Non-holistic approaches emphasize the role of the individual rather than the total social or cultural system within which s/he operates.  Methodological holism thus aims at understanding social life through social and cultural patterns. It is contrasted to methodological individualism, which is the position (advanced in philosophy, for example, by Karl Popper) that the individual is the basic and irreducible unit of explanation in social analysis. Malinowski argued against Theories of Social Evolution…  The Theory of Evolution holds that species of living things develop from previous versions of themselves, as opposed to being created. The term was made famous by Darwin, though the term had this meaning from at least the 1830s. “Social evolution” is the anthropological concept of directional change in a society. In late- nineteenth-century studies it was supposed that “primitive” societies gradually evolved to greater levels of complexity (i.e. towards something akin or identical to “Western” modernity/civilization). And Against Evolutionism...  Which is a perspective grounded in the belief in theories of evolution. Nineteenth-century anthropologists such as Tylor and Morgan advocated what became known as unilinear evolutionism: the idea that evolution followed more or less the same path in every society, with the same stages of development discernible. With the rise of fieldwork-based anthropology at the start of the 20th century, authors such as Malinowski rejected this model.  Neoevolutionism (or Neo-Darwinism) is a term that generally applies to modern revivals of evolutionism; in sociology it is associated with the theories of Talcott Parsons. As Well As Diffusions…  Diffusions are the appearance of elements of one people’s culture or practices in another; it was first mentioned by Tylor in Primitive Culture. For a long time early British anthropologists in particular argued over the merits of diffusion or it’s alternative, independent invention, as the explanation for similarities between diverse peoples.  Some 19th and early 20th century anthropologists thus argued that similarities in certain traits found across the world’s cultures were the result of borrowing from a small number of centers of innovation -such as Ancient Egypt and Europe. Here, as with evolutionism, peoples were arranged according to whether they were seen as capable of producing innovation or whether they were capable only of borrowing. Again, different peoples were differentially ranked.  Malinowski rejected what he considered to be pseudo-scientific approaches to the study of human kind. (1) “Statistical documentation by concrete evidence”  Ethnography consists of collecting concrete data of evidence (about, for example, the organization of the tribe, the “anatomy of its culture”) and drawing general inferences for himself  For instance, [when it comes to crime and punishment], a real occurrence will stimulate a native to express his opinion and to supply plentiful information. From there, it will be easy to lead them on to speak of similar cases ...  So, the number of definitive cases discussed will reveal to the ethnographer the social machinery for punishment ... the collecting of concrete data over a wide range of facts will allow for patterns of culture to emerge.  Each phenomenon ought to be studied through ... its concrete manifestations. From there you create graphs, models, and statistics. (2) “Imponderabilia of actual life”  What the ethnographer is equally interested in is “the full body and blood of actual native life ... *which+ fills out the skeleton of abstract constructions”.  “The ethnographer is therefore interested also in the routine of man’s working day, the details of his care of the body, of the manner of taking food and preparing it, the tone of conversational and social life around the village fires, the existence of strong friendships or hostilities” ... “these imponerabilia are collected through minute, detailed observation”.  “We all know what “family life” means for us, the atmosphere of home, all the innumerable small acts and attentions in which are expressed affection ... The Ethnographer wants to bring their real life home to his readers ... Neither aspect, the intimate, as little as the legal, ought to be glossed over. (3) “Verbatim Discourse in the local language”  Native’s views, utterances, and commentary are the “spirit” that needs to be documented as well”. Why?  “The social and cultural environment in which they move forces people to think and feel in a definitive manner”.  Hence: Socio-cultural anthropology is one of the few social sciences where the conveyance of our informants’ “voices” is paramount.  What one documents is “typical ways of thinking and feeling,” but also “terms of classification,” “technical terms,” and thus the “verbal contours of native thought”. With this in mind, the ethnographer must be able to communicate in the local language. So, in sum, “the goal is briefly, to grasp the native’s point of view, his relation to life, to realize his vision of his world”. Participant Observation  A central element of anthropological fieldwork is that researchers immerse themselves in the everyday activities of the people or phenomenon they are studying, work in the local language, and observe events in their every-day contexts for at least one year, sometimes several years. Participant observation is usually supplemented by more formal research, such as surveys and interviews. “Multiplex Identity” (Narayan)  A person may have many strands of identification available;  Different aspects of one’s identity become highlighted or relevant at different times;  Gender, race, class, generation;  Location, brokerage, or being an academic. Example of “multiplex identity”: M.N. Srinivas  An urban, Brahman male who grew up in India and was educated at Oxford;  Upon returning “home”, he found that he was not quite “native” after all; in fact, he was at times treated as quite exotic by the villagers he worked with;  Caste, urban background, class privilege, his alliance with a faraway land (England)- all these shifting aspects of his identity could be highlighted as a way to distance him from his roots or align him with certain sectors of the local community. Complicating Anthropology in the 1980s (Natives)  “Who is the native? “To use a generic term is to assume that all natives are the same native, mutually substitutable in their same (male) point of view. Yet anthropological wisdom tells us that even in the simplest society, gender and age provide factors of social differentiation”  In short, members of any cultural realm are all positioned differently within this realm - women will relate to cultural norms differently than do men, poor different to the rich etc. So, rather than insist, as Malinowski (1922) and even Geertz (1984) did, that “the goal is, briefly, to grasp the native’s point of view, his relation to life, to realize his vision of his world,” we need to look for “natives’ points of view to realize their visions of their worlds”. Reflexivity  The process of turning in on oneself; of “reflecting” on oneself and the conditions under which knowledge is produced. Most sociocultural anthropologists today acknowledge that the relationship between the “observer” and the “observed” is almost always asymmetrical.  This is the case because anthropologists - like ALL RESEARCHERS IN THE SOCIAL SCIENCES - are raced, classed, and gendered in particular (often highly privileged) ways. This means that the knowledge produced is never quite objective or neutral - you are speaking from a position of privilege. Situated or Perspectivist Knowledge  For socio-cultural anthropologists, the production of knowledge is always linked to power and the particularities of context.  If we understand that all knowledge is voiced from a particular location or position, then perfect objectivity and neutrality are not possible. On the contrary, social scientific knowledge is always forged from particular vantage points and from within a field of power relations.  “A perspectivist knowledge is not as much non-objective: it is partial. It reflects an external reality but only an aspect of it, the one visible from the particular spot, social and individual, where the anthropologist was placed. Non-objectivity creeps in when the partial aspect is considered the global one”. “Trobriand Cricket: And Ingenious Response to Colonialism”  The film shows how the Trobrianders have taken the very controlled game of British cricket, first introduced to them some 70 years earlier by Methodist missionaries, and changed it into an outlet for mock warfare and intervillage competition, political reputation-building among leaders, eroticized dancing and chanting, and wild entertainment.  The game is a major symbolic statement of the Trobrianders' feelings and experiences under British colonialism. Ira Bashkow: Situated Knowledge  “In his famous introduction to Argonauts, Bronislav Malinowski explains that he had to set himself apart from colonial officials, missionaries, and traders, so that the natives would accept him, unlike these others, in their daily lives ... this romantic egalitarian ideal of rapport is fundamentally flawed”.  Why wipe power asymmetries under the table? Why try and deny it?  For Bashkow, his acknowledgment of power - the power that resides in him as a white, relatively wealthy man from the US - became an important tool for him to understand Orokaivans’ relationship to the West, to wealth, and to Whiteness.  Here, the acknowledgements that you as observer are never neutral helped further his understanding of Orokaivan culture. Lecture #3: Comparative Method in Anthropology  In early 19th century anthropology, comparison was a way of using ethnographic information to place societies within an evolutionary scheme. Such approaches fell out of favor soon as evolutionism fell out of favor.  Anthropologies in the 1950s and 1960s continued to be skeptical of comparison. As one famous anthropologist put it, the social facts studied by anthropologists are “so totally different from those studied by the other sciences that neither the comparative method nor any other is likely to lead to formulations of generalizations comparable to those made in other sciences. We have to deal with specific values, sentiments, purposes, will, reason, choice, as well as with historical circumstances”.  Today, anthropologists agree that comparisons of “cultures” cannot be seriously undertaking. Whole cultures as units of comparison can at most be compared with reference to specific traits, themes, or institutions (for example, material goods such as pottery or technology; kinship relationships such as mother’s brother or sister’s relationship; rituals such as national celebrations; forms of government; kinds of religion).  But mostly, socio-cultural anthropologists adhere to the dictum that our knowledge is situated. Producing positional or situated knowledge means that we always “see the lives of others through the lenses of our own grinding and that they look back on our through ones of their own” (Geertz).  What we end up reflecting on, then, are less traits and institutions, but the kinds of lenses through which people view the world. Lenses of our own Grinding: “Nature versus Culture”  Mary Weismantel: Her godchild Nancy all of a sudden had a new mother. Nancy had heretofore called her aunt Tia. Two years later, Nancy was calling her aunt mama. She lived with her aunt, who treated her like a daughter. Alfonso and Olguita, Nancy’s birth parents, were pleased with this new relationship, because it strengthened Alfonso’s ties to his sister.  Why is Mary Weismantel surprised about this? Why is this surprising to many of us in this room? Because she operated with the assumption that there is something like a “natural mother” but quickly realized that this is category is not applicable to the people of Zumbagua. Zumbagua Kinship  The biological connection that I assumed held together families unraveled more and more. … Every adult seemed to have several kinds of parents and several kinds of children. They remembered a man, who fathered them, but another who “husbanded” their growth; they remembered a woman who gave birth to them, but others who fed them and taught them to speak and to know. Weismantel’s Findings on Zumbagua Kinship  In Zumbagua there is absolutely no privileging of the relationship a child has with the genitor (biological father) or genitrix (biological mother) over other who are called parents  The people of Zumbagua don’t discriminate between children born to women of the family and those born elsewhere and incorporated later.  Even mothers, who so often are thought of as naturally tied to the child (even more naturally than fathers), are in Zumbagua very similar to men in that children can be given up (to one’s mother, for example) or adopted by someone else (one’s brother, for example) in unproblematic ways. However, many observers of Zumbagua kinship (this includes Western but also dominant Hispanic kinship ideology in Ecuador) view Zumbagua kinship practices from the vantage point of the “nature” versus “culture” divide. Euro-American Kinship Natural Mothers and Natural Fathers  Natural mothers/fathers = biological mothers/fathers  Biological family = natural family  Natural family versus fictive kinship? From the Euro-American standpoint (and from the standpoint of the nurse (pg. 690)), the relationship between Nancy and her new mother (Iza and his son) cannot be as real or natural as her/his relationship with her/his biological parents. The Primacy of Consanguinity  Literally, sharing the same blood. Consanguinity is kinship through the bloodline. Usually opposed through affinity, which refers to relations through marriage.  Consanguinity (especially in its heternormative form) is treated as the “real,” “normal,” “modern” kind of kinship. Consanguinity however is not the basis for kinship in many parts of the world. Nor is the way relations are necessarily organized for all families in Canada. BLOOD is THICKER than WATER  This assumption [that Blood is Thicker Than Water] makes biological kinship unlike any other social bonds, for it has especially strong binding force and is directly constituted by, grounded in, and determined by the imperatives of biology.  Kinship is therefore thought to primarily consist of biological bonds on which kinsmen can depend and which are more compelling and stronger than, and take priority over, other kinds of bonds.  Kinship is therefore often considered to be largely innate, a quality of human nature, biologically determined, however much social or cultural overlay may also be present. Kinship Theory in Anthropology  Different kinship systems that anthropologists found across the globe were in the 19th century compared along evolutionary lines and hierarchized (Henry Lewis Morgan);  Anthropologists in the early and mid-20th century inaugurated a “post-Morgan” phase and stressed not difference and hierarchy, but universality. According to famous anthropologists such as Radcliff-Brown, varieties of kinship were in fact organized around what they called “the elementary family.”  They argued for the elementary family by referring back to “nature”  They argued that “kinship is the aspect of human culture with the closest links to the natural world”  ... and that “cultural processes tend to follow the lead of innate biological drives” Iroquois Kinship System  A classificatory kinship system: One class of people is classed or encompassed under one term/classification;  In this system, relatives are classed according to the principle of bifurcation (in this case, depending on whether they are on the mother’s or the father’s side)  Ego distinguishes between relatives on his mother's side of the family and those on his father's side and merges (uses the same term for) father and father's brother (A) and mother and mother's sister (B).  Accordingly, father's brother's children and mother sister's children (parallel cousins) are merged with brother and sister (C and D). Sudanese Kinship System  Is a completely descriptive system (in contrast to the classificatory system). It assigns a different kin term to each distinct relative, as indicated by separate letters and colors in the diagram above. Ego distinguishes between his father (A), his father's brother (E), and his mother's brother (H). There are potentially eight different cousin terms.  So terms of address will differ here. What differs with the terms are the specific rights and obligations assigned to different people in society. Hawaiian Kinship System  This is a classificatory system that only distinguishes between sex and generation. Thus, siblings and cousins were not distinguished (the same terms are used for both kinds of relatives). Zumbagua: How do we account for frequent adoption?  Is adoption really only “compensatory kinship” (i.e. kinship that is created when biological kinship fails in the case of infertility, orphaned children, lack of male heir etc. ?  What do we make of the fact that in some cultural contexts (such as Polynesia), adoption is so wide-spread that up to 35% of all households have adopted children resident within them (in the US, it is only 3%)?  This cannot be the result of “compensation.” Maybe we should start thinking less about NATURE and more about CULTURES OF RELATEDNESS!  “New Kinship Studies”  The most recent research has thus begun to think of kinship more broadly.  Kinship systems are cultural systems and not mere responses to biological facts. Temporality  Time is culturally relative in so far as people exhibit different senses of time; they apprehend time differently and exhibit variably modes of time consciousness.  There are always multiple forms of social time present within socio-cultural groups.  In Euro-American though, temporality is suppressed in the sense that natural or biological parenthood occurs only at a single, specific moment - at the very inception of the relationship between parent and child ... It denies the impact of history on the physical [and relational] self.  NATURE, IN SHORT, IS PRIVILEGED CONTRA CULTURE AND HISTORY. CULTURE? HISTORY?  In Los Angeles as in Latin America, poor and marginalized communities have had to create strong, flexible kinship systems in order to survive.  Adoption in Zumbagua is neither rare nor a last resort when biology fails. It is, instead, an important tool used by families, households, and individuals to shape social identity: providing each child not only with immediate care but with the all-important dense web of kin needed to survive life in the economic periphery.  In Zumbagua, the defining characteristic of wealth is the ability to fill the house with children. Rich families are big families, strategically assembled from a widespread web of close-knit and distant kin through a variety of economic and social tactics Lecture #4: In biology, a hermaphrodite is an organism that differs from what is usually defined as standard male or female. These organisms may have an unusual chromosomal makeup (male babies can be born with two X chromosomes), hormonal differences, or a range of configurations and combinations of genitals and reproductive organs. Roughly 15 percent of animal species can be classified as intersex. If you look at all natural life on the planet, the percentage is even higher. Some scientists have suggested that intersexuals may constitute as many as 4 percent of all human births. What is nature? What is culture? What is sex? What is gender?  Western-Euro-American culture is deeply committed to the idea that there are only two sexes.  Biologically speaking, however, there exist gradations of female and male; both in the animal and the human world.  Culturally speaking, there is also much variation. Sworn Virgins of Albania: Because of this variation, scholars have differentiated between sex and gender…  Sex is a biological categorization based primarily on reproductive potential.  Gender is the cultural elaboration of biological sex. Gender  Usually, men and women take on culturally specific and distinct gender identities. They internalize, enact, and perform culturally specific norms and expectations and learn to dress, walk, and speak in gendered ways. Some people explicitly play with these identities, reformulate them, and remodel them.  Gender is therefore always performed according to culturally specific norms and possibilities. Scholars call this the performativity of gender.  It is thus not only sworn virgins and Two Spirits (Third Gender in Native North America) who “play” with or “perform” gender. We all do.  We all either enact/perform/reproduce normative gender ideologies or stereotypes; or we play with these norms, resist them, and modify them.  Anthropologists are interested in how gender norms are performed and resisted across diverse cultural contexts Gender Ideologies  An IDEOLOGY is a shared, tacit set of perceptions and feelings people have for explaining, interpreting, justifying, and judging the world - including the people inhabiting it. Ideologies often justify (and reproduce) inequalities.  A GENDER IDEOLOGY consists of the shared, tacit set of perceptions and feelings people have for explaining, interpreting, justifying, and judging the people in relation to their gender (“She sits like a man”). A gender ideology often justifies gender hierarchy.  Gender ideologies often hold that men and women, boys and girls, fundamentally differ from each other.  The ubiquity of the view of male and female as opposites is witnessed in the common English expression the opposite sex. Rarely do you hear an alternative expression, such as the other sex, much less another sex. Language  Parents talk to their children differently depending on whether they are male or female. Parents use more diminuitives (kitty, doggie) when speaking to girls than to boys, they use more inner state words (happy, sad) when speaking to girls. They use more direct prohibitives (don’t do that!) and more emphatic prohibitives (no! no! no!) to boys than to girls. Perhaps, one might suggest, the boys need more prohibitions because they tend to misbehave more than the girls. But Bellinger and Gleason found this pattern to be independent of the actual nature of the children’s activity, suggesting that the adults and their beliefs about sex difference are far more important here than the children’s behavior. Voice  Voice provides a dramatic example of children coming to perform gender. At the ages of four to five years, in spite of their identical vocal apparatus, girls and boys begin to differentiate the fundamental frequency of their speaking voice. Boys tend to round and extend their lips, lengthening the vocal tract, whereas girls are tending to spread their lips (with smiles, for example), shortening the vocal tract. Girls are raising their pitches, boys lowering theirs.  WHY? It may well be that adults are more likely to speak to girls in a high pitched voice.  It may be that they reward boys and girls for differential voice productions.  It may also be that children simply observe this difference in older people. GENDER, HIERARCHY, LANGUAGE  As early as the sixteenth century, grammarians argued that male should be mentioned before female: “let us kepe a natural order, and set the man before the woman for maners Sake”, for “The Masculine gender is more worthy than the Feminine”. MANY OF US ALSO FIRMLY BELIEVE THAT...  BIOLOGY IS THE CORE INFLUENCING FACTOR FOR MALE/FEMALE DIFFERENCE  THEREFORE SEX “CAUSES” GENDER  OR: “GENDER” IS A NATURAL EXTENSION OF SEX  ARE WOMEN “NATURALLY” PASSIVE AND MALES “NATURALLY” ACTIVE? Does sex really cause gender? Or do gender stereotypes play a role in how we understand sex?  Is it possible that culture shapes the way biological scientists describe what they discover about the natural world? Aren’t they supposed to be objective?  In fact, the stories told about eggs and sperm in biology text books draw on stereotypes central to our cultural definitions of male and female. Just like the English language is organized around ideologies of the hierarchies of the genders so do biology textbooks use stereotypical language that hierarchizes gender. → Ovulation: “wasteful,” “debris,” “degenerative”... → Sperm: “remarkable,” “amazing,” “sheer magnitude”... → Biology texts tend to celebrate sperm production because it is continuous from puberty to senescence, while egg production is seen as inferior because it is finished at birth (the female is therefore seen as less productive or even wasteful)” → Why not see the male’s vast production of sperm as wasteful? If you do the math, women’s ovulation is a lot less wasteful than men’s sperm production. → It is GENDER IDEOLOGIES (in this case of productivity and wastefulness) that create the language through which we think about “nature.” → Perhaps nature / sex does not determine culture? Perhaps culture determines the way we see nature? Biological text books use other stereotypes as well...  The egg, which is said to have a “crown,” is passive, “a dormant bride awaiting her mate’s magic kiss, which instills the spirit that brings her to life”.  The sperm is “on a mission,” on a “quest” or “perilous journey.” “Survivors” “assault” the egg to get to the “prize.”  Biologically speaking, the description of eggs and sperm as passive versus active respectively is not correct. In fact, rather than sperms penetrating the egg, the egg ENCAPSULATES what is essentially a very weak sperm.  Research has shown that the thrust forward of the sperm’s tail is extremely weak. The surface of the egg, in contrast, is designed to trap the sperm and prevent their escape.  Yet, even though newer research broke through cultural expectations of the heroic sperm and the meek and passive egg, researchers continued to write papers arguing that the sperm was the active party that attacks the egg. What is astonishing is that some authors actually fiddle with the scientific language in order to make their cultural models (of active versus passive) fit...  The molecules on the sperm are proteins and have pockets. The molecules on the egg are called ligands; they are like small knobs that stick out. Typically, molecules on the sperm would be called receptors and molecules on the egg would be called ligands. But Wasserman chose to name the molecules on the egg the receptor and to create a new term, “the egg binding protein” for the molecule on the egg. If he had followed protocol, he would have named the molecule on the sperm receptor but that language was clearly too “passive” for him.  This is a clear example of active-passive stereotypes being used to describe biological processes that cannot objectively be described in those terms. “Naturalizing” Gender Ideologies: This is how stereotypes come to appear as natural  “What we are seeing is the importation of cultural ideas about passive females and heroic males into the “personalities” of gametes. This amounts to the implanting of social imagery on representations of nature so as to lay a firm basis for re-importing exactly that same imagery as natural explanations of social phenomena.  In other words: Cultural stereotypes about gender are used to explain nature. Once established as “natural”, these cultural stereotypes then travel back into society: “See! It’s natural (for the male to be active and the female to the passive)! After all, gametes are gendered too!”  Culture turns to biology to naturalize relations between people. In the case described above, it is culture that trumps biology, not biology that trumps culture. → Paris Is Burning is an award-winning 1990 documentary film directed by Jennie Livingston. Filmed in the mid-to-late 1980s, it chronicles the ball culture of New York City and the African American, Latino, gay and transgender communities involved in it. → There are a few important points that Paris is Burning makes. One set of points pertains to gender, the other to kinship. Given the huge variation in family forms all over the world, there is no family that is more “natural” than another. And yet, we continuously evaluate families according to culturally and historically specific ideas about what we think a “natural family” is. Some of us, however, play with norms and expectation... Similarly, there is no more “natural” way of being a woman than another. Instead, we continuously evaluate women according to ideas we have about what a “natural” woman is. We often try to conform to what we think a “natural” woman should look like. But again, some of us also play with norms and expectations... Similarly, there is no more “natural” way of being a man than another. Instead, we continuously evaluate men according to ideas we have about what a “natural” man is. We often try to conform to what we think a “natural” man should look like. Lecture #5: EMOTIONS: Cross-Cultural Universals?  Ethnologists (psychology/zoology) have concluded that happiness, surprise, fear, anger, disgust, and sadness are universal emotions, expressed with the same distinctive configuration of facial muscle.  Anthropologists (sometimes also called ethnologists) say that even though emotions might be expressed similarly from an anatomical perspective, they are always organized around cultural display rules. So, culture influences what emotions can be shown to whom, how, and in what context.  In sum, even though movement of facial muscles when angry and sad might be universal, almost everything else – how emotions are shown and what cultural etiquette concerning this display are – is culturally particular. What do emotions really mean? How are they expressed? Love  Is love a human universal?  Is motherly love innate? Or defined by cultural and social context? How does motherly love get shaped by social context?  Why do mothers in Alto seem indifferent at the death of their infants?  This is a cultural response to high rates of infant death due to poverty and malnutrition. Alto Do Cruziero  Life expectancy 40 years due to extremely high infant mortality.  Women in Alto do Cruziero had come to expect their children to die – not to live. Death was natural, anticipated; survival was a miracle, i.e. exceptional. What does this “culture of feeling” look like?  Maternal feeling and practice can, for example, articulate itself through delayed attachment to infants who are sometimes thought of as temporary household ‘visitors’. Differentiating between “Wanting to Live” and “Wanting to Die”  The high expectancy of death and the ability to face child death with stoicism (fortitude, calm) produced patterns of nurturing that differentiated between those infants thought of as thrivers and survivors and those thought of as born “already wanting to die”  Many women therefore felt that some of their children, if they were weak from the beginning, were fated to die and even “wanted to die” and go to heaven to a better life. These were children who exhibited no will to “fight” – and hence they were allowed to die.  Midwives actively contributed to this culture of feeling by holding the same beliefs. State and Church  Both contribute to the routinization of and indifference towards a child.  “We can begin to see that the seeming indifference of Alto mothers towards death of some of their infants is but a pale reflection of the official indifference of the church and state to the plight of poor women and children” “Culture” of Delayed Attachment  It is dangerous to allow oneself to love a child that has not yet proven itself to be ready and willing to live.  Mothers exhibit a slowness to anthropomorphize and personalize their infants. Everything is done to prevent maternal over-attachment and, therefore, grief at death.  Emotional “triage”  Anthropomorphize: To attribute human form or personality to something non-human.  When does human life begin?  Rather, infants are “angels” on their way up to their heavenly home. Is this immoral? Unethical?  Allowing nature to take its course is not seen as sinful by these often very devout Catholic women. Rather, it is understood as cooperating with God’s plan.  “Just another little angel gone to heaven.” Culture of Grieving  In Alto do Cruziero, grieving a child or crying over it is considered inappropriate or even harmful. Showing grief is even often considered a form of madness.  So, grief is both individually deferred (you grieve only for children whom you believed would survive) and socially unacceptable.  The emotional detachment of mothers towards some of their babies contributes even further to the spiral of high mortality”.  “Passive infanticide” or “mortal selective neglect” Infanticide  Passive Infanticide (or “mortal selective neglect”) exists when “mothers step back and allow nature to take its course.”  Infanticide: The killing of children, strictly speaking those under twelve months old, although the definition varies. In modern western society generally regarded as a rare and frightening act, but the practice may well be acceptable in other places in certain circumstances. A mother may be unable to provide for herself and any existing offspring if the new child survives; the child may suffer a disability, or be of unacceptable paternity. In societies such as India and China a strong cultural preference for sons may tip the balance toward some male children surviving and female ones being killed after birth or aborted.  Geronticide: Euthanasia; the killing of an elderly person. These patterns of delayed attachments and withheld grief are not unique to Alto…  Throughout much of human history – as in a great deal of the impoverished Third World today – women have had to give birth and to nurture children under ecological conditions and social arrangements hostile to child survival. Under circumstances of high childhood mortality, patterns of selective neglect and passive infanticide may be seen as active survival strategies.  Delayed attachment and a casual or benign neglect that serves to weed out the worst bets so as to enhance the life chances of healthier siblings, including those yet to be born. Practices similar to those in Brazil have been recorded for parts of Africa, India, and Central America” Anthropologies of Death and Grieving  How to study this cross-culturally?  For example through systems of ideas about the proper treatment of the dead body. Is it preserved? Retained fully or in part?  Or are mourning rituals organized around renouncing the bodies and its passions? Grief is subject to different display rules depending on cultural context. Emotional Display Rules  We have the persistent idea that all mothers must feel grief in reaction to infant death. Women who do not show “appropriate” grief are judged by psychologists to be “repressing” their “natural” maternal sentiments, to be covering them over with a culturally prescribed but superficial stoicism. They might also be seen as emotionally ravaged, “numbed” by grief and traumatized by shock.  In the West and in Western psychology, showing grief is seen as important to healing and mental health.  This is not the case in many cultural contexts worldwide.  In Alto do Cruziero, grieving a child or crying over it is considered inappropriate or even harmful. Showing grief is even often considered a form of madness.  Careful: She is also not saying that a death in other parts of the world is not as bad as in our part of the world (where children are expected to live).  Rather, mothers living under conditions of material deprivation have had to develop emotional repertoires to deal with extreme, repeated loss of children. Conclusions  Mother love is NOT deficient or absent in Alto. Rather, the course of mother love is different, shaped by overwhelming economic and cultural constraints.  Motherly love is anything other than natural.  Motherly indifference might also be a “rational” response to extreme forms of deprivation.  Rather than natural, we must therefore understand emotions as a set of images, meanings, sentiments and practices that are everywhere socially and culturally produced.  One may experience discomfort in the face of profound human differences, some of which challenge our cultural notions of the ‘normal’ and the ‘ethical’. But to attribute ‘sameness’ across vast social, economic and cultural divides is a serious error for the anthropologist, who must begin, although cautiously, from a respectful assumption of difference.  Anthropologists also often conclude that they must do more than mere research and instead become more engaged in the social problems and injustices they encounter. Nevertheless, we continue to think of Mother Love as Natural, Universal, and Unchanging. Why?  Once again, biological kinship is understood to be unlike any other social bond. It has especially strong binding force and is directly constituted by, grounded in, and determined by the imperatives of biology.  Kinship (and love) is therefore often considered to be largely innate, a quality of human nature, biologically determined, however much social or cultural overlay may also be present. Assumptions about Mother Love  Our assumptions about motherly love are closely bound up with our assumptions about biological kinship (or, once again, with “nature” and the “natural family”).  Natural family = natural emotions Ethical Relativism  Ethical relativism is the notion that the business of making universal, cross-cultural, ethical judgments is both incoherent and unfair because moral values are a product of each culture’s unique developmental history, and can, therefore only be judged in relation to that history.  Anthropologists are therefore wary of universalizing judgments of other people’s moral values and ethical behavior. They are wary of Eurocentrism because of the long history that such tendencies have in the West’s relationship with the world.  Human rights? Women’s rights? Children’s rights? Public/Engaged Anthropology  Is about anthropology and anthropologists effectively addressing problems beyond the discipline - illuminating larger social issues of our times as well as encouraging broad, public conversations about them with the explicit goal of fostering social change. Romantic Love in the West  Romantic love as the basis for marriage is a culturally specific institution that became a central feature of industrial (Western) societies  Compared with data from across the world, the idea that marriage should be based on love is a peculiar institution and quite extraordinary historically. Love as a Crucial Ingredient of Marriage  A 19 century invention  Came round about the same time as the rise of industrial capitalism  The ideologies of personhood and self that are central to capitalism and love are similar...  Both hinge on individualism, the importance of privacy, and choice. History of Love in the West  Until the late 19th century in the West, marriage was not a matter of personal choice, but a matter than involved families who were brought together through marriage.  Marriage was about safeguarding property and inheritance as well as creating political alliances. It was not a mere personal matter concerning only husband and wife, but rather the business of their two families which brought them together.  There is evidence of arranged marriages in Western societies until very recently, i.e. the very end of the 19th century. Until then, people encouraged a union for cultural and economic reasons rather than love. Arranged Marriage  Likewise, many societies world-wide believe that marriage is too important a matter to be left to the individuals concerned.  Hence the personal feelings of the prospective marriage partners, their feelings of “love” for each other, are largely irrelevant to the arrangement of marriage.  This is not to argue that 'love' or deep affection between members of the opposite sex is unknown outside modern industrial societies. Indeed, anthropologists have documented a wide range of courtship patterns, poetic traditions, and so on, worldwide.  In many societies, love affairs occur before and outside of marriage whereas marriages are often arranged.  In many societies arranged marriages lead to companionate (rather than romantic) love within marriage.  We can therefore conclude that a system of marriage that places romantic love at its center is a specifically Western pattern or invention. Ancient Greece  Marriage was usually treated as a practical matter without much romantic significance. A father arranged the most advantageous marriage for his son and then had a contract signed before witnesses. Shortly thereafter a wedding celebration was held and the young couple (who might never have met before) was escorted to bed (procreation as central to marriage). All marriages were monogamous. As a rule, the bridegroom was in his thirties and the bride was a teenager. Ancient Rome  Very varied marriage customs.  Marriage might not have included a ceremony at all. It was established simply by the couple's living together for one year. Divorce was just as informal.  A more formal kind of marriage began with a ceremony in front of witnesses and was also dissolved with a ceremony.  Members of the upper classes usually preferred an elaborate ceremony and thus married in front of ten witnesses and a priest. In the case of a divorce, another great ceremony was required. However, all three forms of marriage and divorce were equally valid.  Even though there was great variation in marriage customs, marriage (no matter what form it took) was extremely important. The founder of the Roman Empire, Augustus, passed drastic laws compelling people to marry and penalizing those who remained single. Importance of procreation. Medieval Europe  In medieval Europe, marriage came more and more under the influence of the church. Marriage was essentially an arrangement between the bridegroom and the bride's father. The symbol of a successful transaction was the ring which was given to the bride herself. Acceptance of the ring constituted betrothal. Once again, throughout most of the Middle Ages and for the greater part of the population marriage remained a practical, economic affair. The emergence of romantic love in Nepal: Love letters as window into broader social changes…  In earlier times villagers viewed romantic love with a good deal of shame and embarrassment. Love had no positive aspects to it; in fact, it primarily brought pain and trouble.  Higher rates of school attendance and frequent evening female literacy classes meant that people in the village came in contact with a “development discourse” that emphasized the importance of individual agency and the fulfillment of individuals’ desires.  Letter writing allowed for individual agency and self-expression. Because love letters were often the only way for Junigau residents to communicate their romantic feelings to their sweethearts, writing became a way for young people to express their love AND to view themselves as successful, “modern,” choosing subjects.  Love now was an emotion to be proud of, something to be expressed as proof of one’s success and modernity. What are the rules and regulations and norms that govern love today? Anthropologists have studied everything from gay marriage to love and technological change… → A few generations ago, college students showed their romantic commitments by exchanging special objects: rings, pins, varsity letter jackets. Pins and rings were handy, telling everyone in local communities that you were “taken.” When you broke up, the absence of a ring let everyone know you were available again. Is being Facebook official really more complicated, or are status updates just a new version of these old tokens? Are there new rules for breaking up? Are they being created as we speak? → Anthropologist Ilana Gershon answers these questions after working with a group of almost 80 undergraduate students at Indiana University in mid to late 2000. Social Etiquette  What’s the worst way to break up? Texting!!!  Email is more formal... but face-to-face is best.  Once you broke up, at what point to do change your Facebook status?  Is it the person who gets dumped who should change the status first?  Or should both wait a few days since that is simply polite and then announce?  Why wait? Some friends might want to hear the news by phone.  Or maybe some people need time to heal before they can deal with the social ramifications of announcing the break up.  The exes can also pressure each other to promptly update a relationship status on Facebook, whether at the beginning or after a breakup. → Arguing over text-message is a social skill that people have had to develop, and it involves many contested rules and regulations. How to communicate on text with your boyfriend and girlfriend? How many minutes or even longer do you wait if you are angry? → Often, students in Indiana would ask their friends what they should respond and when they should respond. → Many students reported that “friends often engaged in the labor of ending relationships—some even provided actual words.” → WHAT ABOUT FAKE STATUSES? Facebook allows for duplicity.... → Interestingly, Gershon also found lots of nostalgia for a time BEFORE Facebook (BF); or before texting and instant messaging. They talked about how complicated these different media made communication, focusing often on how much miscommunication was generated by a lack of intonation and other conversational cues available in face-to-face interaction. Earlier forms of communication seemed easier. → Lecture #6: Race: → The concept of “race” assumes that the human species can be divided into separate categories based on differences in physical features. These differences are usually assumed to derive from differences in biological make-up (i.e. hereditary traits / genes). These divisions between people are assumed to be natural fact. → “Race” is often also assumed to correlate with personality traits, intelligence, physical talents What Chris Rock Teaches Us → That race is not rooted in “natural” biological differences between categories of people, but about the meanings we ascribe to race. → “Race” (whiteness, blackness) is more about custom than genetics. → “Race” is a system of social meanings that we ascribe to what appears as “natural fact” Whiteness Can Mean  Wealth, elitism, privilege  Golf  Fancy dogs  Nuclear family  Elite tastes  Liberal political orientation → These symbols and meanings can attach themselves to different people regardless of skin colour. → Race is “a set of symbols that can be complexly distributed across many different groups of people” → This is why “Ugandan high school teachers were referred to as ‘those black white men’ Blackness Can Mean  Poor  Intolerant  Aggressive  Big families (which is why Romney is in this regard “blacker than Obama”)  Race as a relational category Race Attaches Itself to Things Other Than People…  Amongst the Orokaiva → Foods (store bought) → Institutions (church, school) → Town as opposed to village → Styles of activity (clock) Racial stereotypes consist not only of ideas about persons but also crucially involve objects, institutions, places, and styles of activity. This fact helps us understand why racial stereotypes remain so powerful even when contradicted by people’s experience. Race has little to do with actual people. It is a sign system according to which people organize their world into socially meaningful categories. Errors of Race - Where do we draw the line? Genetic Similarity  “Race” is not a valid biological concept. It does not fit the genetic data, which has shown that even though groups of people might differ phenotypically, they in fact do not have a unique biological make-up.  Genetically speaking, humans are incredibly similar. In fact, we are the most similar of all species and share a lot more genetic material than, say, Arctic penguins or flies.  Genetic evidence indicates that most physical variation, about 94%, lies within so-called racial groups.  Conventional "racial" groupings differ from one another only in about 6% of their genes. This means that there is greater variation within "racial" groups than between them. Racial categories reflect only one way of dividing a complex human reality that could be conceptually divided in other ways just as well. The seeming naturalness of racial categories is illusionary, a reflection of our general human tendency to mistake convention for necessity.  Race does not exist. It is a cultural invention. Though individual differences exist, race as a categorical distinction between groups of people is an illusion.  Racism exists. Like all ideologies (gender, kinship ...), racial ideologies have extremely powerful social effects. How the Irish Became White  The Irish were in America for the longest time not treated as white, but similar to people of African descent. Both were treated as servants, and little difference was made between the two.  The Irish were subjected to negative “racial” stereotyping not very different from that used for Africans. The comic Irishman - happy, lazy, and stupid, with a gift for music and dance - was a stock character of the English and American stage. In northern states, blacks and Irish were frequently forced to live in neighbouring slums and compete for the same low-status jobs.  Over the years, though, Irish Americans managed to a great extent to enter and become part of the ruling culture, while African Americans remain on the bottom rung of the socioeconomic ladder.  WHAT IS WHITE IF NOT A COLOUR? The Irish had to begin to embrace ideas about white supremacy and to explicitly align. …How did we get to race?  Before European colonization linked the Old and New Worlds after 1492, the spectrum of humanity was not understood as a totality. With the global colonial system and the rise of “science” (including early anthropology), the distinction between different kinds of people as biologically – and culturally, morally, mentally - distinct became a global system. Race as a mode of categorization was applied to the entire human species.  Race consisted of a small number of categories, most frequently just five, although sometimes with sub-races and mixed-race types added to them. Race thus became wrapped up into an attempt to scientifically prove human difference (measuring of human variation). “Race” as a Process of Essentialization  The distinctive mark of essentialism is not merely that it is totalizing and reductive of human complexity (“All X are can dance”).  Its distinctive mark lies in the fact that it suppresses history: It assumes or attributes an unchanging, primordial ESSENCE to people - who are in reality the product of human agency and cultural context.  Race is an essentialized system of difference. It has come to seem real, natural and unquestionable to millions of human beings, including both victims and beneficiaries of racialized social ordering.  Race is the naturalization of human difference through biology Race and Caste  In both systems, particular groups are said to have separate ancestral origins, thus explaining their appearance, behaviour, and place in society.  Like racial groups, castes tends to be endogamous, i.e. they either tend to marry members of their own group or are even actively forbidden from marrying outside of their group.  Often “superior” groups are attributed with some sort of purity while those of lower races or castes are thought of as impure and “unclean” – contact between races can be thought of as polluting those of a higher status.  In some Southern US states, African Americans were legally barred from drinking water from the same public water fountains as whites, from using the same restrooms, and from sitting in the same sections in buses and trains. These laws were repealed in the 1950s and 1960s. But their underlying symbolism has not been entirely eradicated. What does “whiteness” mean in Orokaiva?  Whiteness (“Brightness”)= Wealth  While the light colour of whitemen’s skin plays some role in constituting the brightness of whitemen, skin colour by no means is the only factor or even the main one.  Instead, as is usual in cultural constructions of race, skin takes on meanings associated not only with a pigmentary difference, but also with social and moral qualities, economic and political activities, and social habits.  This is why dark-skinned foreigners are categorized by Orokaiva as basically “whitemen”. Whiteness and Privilege Given histories of colonialism it is no historical accident that the whiteman, as a perceived cultural presence, is a global phenomenon, and it is thus unsurprising to hear that the blanco or gringo in Mexico, the laowei in China, and the obroni in Ghana are all similarly symbols of western modernity, wealth, and race privilege, personifying the legacy of Western imperialism, and the ideal of development, and the force of globalization. How is meaning created?  However, these global “archetypes” (in this case, the wide-spread and commonly held idea that whiteness = wealth) are always also translated into local cultural vernaculars (i.e. local meaning systems).  Globally available symbols or archetypes are therefore always vernacularized by local communities who use them.  Meanings about race are therefore co-constructed Orokaiva Understanding of “Whiteness”  Modernity and development is an essential property of white men.  Why should Orokaiva continue to accept a premise that to them is so disempowering?  White men/black men opposition has been appropriated and internalized. It has become profoundly meaningful within the life and culture of Orokaivans.  The Orokaiva language does not elaborate on colour terms very much. But it does differentiate between the light/bright and dark contrast; with moral dimensions to both. White men are particularly “bright.”  They also differentiate between jo (a person’s inside, which is invisible) and hamo (outside, visible; “skin”).  Because the jo is difficult to know, Orokaivans make few generalizations about the interior qualities of groups of people. They make generalizations about the qualities of their “skin.” White men are “bright” and have “money on their skin. What does “Brightness” mean?  Brightness is whatever attracts attention; things that are beautiful or exhibit wealth are bright.  Dark-skinned foreigners are also “bright.”  Seeing brightness means perceiving an inequality and desiring the beauty and wealth of the other. Inequality must be overcome through giving. Unequal Relations in Orokaiva  How to deal with inequality?  When you see someone who is “bright,” i.e. better off than yourself, someone who is wealthy or more beautiful, you are confronted with your own inferiority and lack. The morally appropriate response is for the other to give something to you ... and to diminish the imbalance.  The only way to avoid having to constantly give is to keep desirable/bright objects out of sight.  White men don’t do that. On the contrary, they display wealth and don’t share it.  White men walk around with wallets bulging with money and bank cards, and when they pay for things, instead of carefully extracting a single note from a pouch tucked deep inside a pocket or string bag, crumpling it in the hand and passing it discreetly so that others will not notice, white men take the whole wallet out of their pocket or purse and hold it open promiscuously, handling their money in plain sight of all  To Orokaivans, this is enigmatic behaviour and proves that white men don’t really see them. If they were to see them, they would redistribute.  Orokaivans are not just “black.” “Blackness” signifies invisibility and powerlessness. *Transracial Adoption in America Lecture #7: Colonialism  Colonialism is the extension of a nation's sovereignty over territory beyond its borders. Colonialism does so through the establishment of either settler colonies or administrative dependencies. Imperialism  Imperialism is the buildin
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