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Diane Duclos, Sylvain L. Faye, Tidiane Ndoye, and Loveday Penn-Kekana

act of locating, understood as an approach to capturing epistemologies in the making and to reflecting on the role and responsibilities of anthropology as a community of practice, will be used to understand how ‘performance’ was both studied and co

Open access


Performance, Power, Exclusion, and Expansion in Anthropological Accounts of Protests

Aet Annist

( Youngs 2017 ), we are offering this topical special section to analyze protests through an ethnographic lens. Concentrating on power and performance, the articles consider the matrix within which the protests emerge—the time and space, the historic and

Open access

Weapons for Witnessing

American Street Preaching and the Rhythms of War

Kyle Byron

responding to this imperative, street preachers transform streets, sidewalks, and other forms of urban infrastructure into sites of religious performance. 2 Referencing Filip De Boeck (2012) , Penny Harvey and Hannah Knox (2015: 5) describe

Open access

Returning to Nature

Post-carbon Utopias in Svalbard, Norway

Cecilie Vindal Ødegaard

While industrial closures in past decades were legitimized through an emphasis on economic motives, current closures are often framed within an emphasis on ‘green transition’, that is, through prefigurative discourses about post-carbon futures. This article discusses how the prefigurative transition framework reshapes the industrialization narrative, seeking to bridge the anthropology of energy and theories of performance. By paying attention to how ‘proclaimed transition’ is envisioned, narrated, and performed, the article explores the ways in which transition in Svalbard is spectacularly dramatized by the dismantling of the Svea coal mines, accompanied by the ‘returning to nature’ of the area. The article analyzes this ‘returning’ as a social drama of our anthropogenic times, demonstrating how landscape and nature are made key entities in performances of post-carbon utopia(s).

Open access

Conspicuous performances

Ritual competition between Christian and non‐Christian Hmong in contemporary Vietnam

Tâm T. T. Ngô

After recognising Hmong Protestantism, the Vietnamese state continued an ‘anti‐conversion’ politics. It did so by encouraging the revival of what they saw as traditional Hmong religion as a bulwark against Protestantism and by enriching the range of cultural commodities for the growing ethno‐tourism market. For the non‐converts, not only their resistance of Christianity began to be redefined as ‘the battle’ against Christianity, their belief and practices, up to then highly despised of by authorities, began to be restructured in order to gain new strength to rebound on the national and global religious stage. The new consciousness of the non‐Christian Hmong, however, worried the Vietnamese state. This contribution charts the annual competitions held since 2005 between Christian and non‐Christian groups in Lao Cai province in organising yearly Hmong communal rituals. It shows that what was meant to become a folklorised bulwark against Christianity became a new mêlée of ritual competition, as pioneering Hmong quickly seized the central stage. Ritual festivals thus become arenas of identity struggle in which none of the usual identity markers (secular, religious, communist, Christian, modern, traditional) can be taken at face value.

Open access

Physically Distant – Socially Intimate

Reflecting on Public Performances of Resistance in a Pandemic Situation

Marion Hamm

-arranged during this public performance (Hamm 2020) under lockdown. Based on fieldnotes, online communication on the day, open-ended digital strolls and peer-to-peer communication, I constructed a thick description by contextualising ethnographic scenes around

Open access

Invisible and Visible Shi'a

Ashura, State and Society in Kuwait

Thomas Fibiger

the state’ ( Louër 2008: 45 ), supportive of and supported by the Sunni Al Sabah regime. Little is, however, written about this topic from the perspective of ritual performance on Ashura. Based on ethnographic observations of Ashura rituals in 2013

Open access

Sharedness as Belonging

Hospitality, Inclusion, and Equality among the Layene of Senegal

Emily Jenan Riley

this article, Layene adherents reinterpret teraanga as a civic duty of individuals to their religious community, expressed through the giving and receiving of hospitality and generosity, and the recognition of a shared identity through performances of

Open access

Julieta Gaztañaga

the clear political goal of showing that Basques are in favor of deciding their political future, a right ultimately leading to a referendum. GED activists tend to have a frantic agenda packed with meetings, workshops, talks, public performances