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Tova Gamliel

The wailing of Yemenite Jewish women, as preserved in the Yemenite Jewish community in Israel, is presented as a case study for analysis of and comparison with other existing wailing cultures. The article uses a model of identities to examine anthropological conventions that interpret death rituals as rites of transition and crisis. A well-known function of wailing—as a bridge between life and death—is decoded in view of the model. The gender dimension of wailing is examined by counterposing and juxtaposing feminine wailing to masculine wailing at death events. The article describes the relative contributions of men and women to the stability of their community and analyzes the unique characteristics of the psycho-social power of women's wailing.

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Substance, Conduct, and History

"Altaian-ness" in the Twenty-First Century

Ludek Broz

Since the early 1990s the Altai Republic has been experiencing a dispute about its archaeological heritage. This article deals with one aspect of it—the discrepancy between a local understanding of archaeological monuments as belonging to the direct ancestors of present day Altaians, and an expert view of many historians, archaeologists and physical anthropologists who see no relation between the two. Drawing on the work of Halemba and on Ingold's distinction between relational and genealogical models of indigeneity, this article describes the controversy as feeding on different concepts of "Altaian-ness." Original data nevertheless show that Ingold's sharp distinction between the two models is better understood as complementarity in the Altaian context. Historical data furthermore suggest that such complementarity is a principle that has long been in operation, visible, for example, when we look at identity labels preceding "Altaian."

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Gendered Models of Resistance

Jansenist Nuns and Unigenitus

Mita Choudhury

In the decades following the promulgation of the anti-Jansenist bull Unigenitus, scores of nuns and convents resisted the efforts of authorities to make them acquiesce to the Bull. Male Jansenist authors writing from a figurist perspective transformed this female dissent into the model for all forms of spiritual resistance against Unigenitus. Their gendered constructions represented a challenge to the church hierarchy, forging nuns into a political weapon against the ultramontane episcopacy. The controversy over the Religieuses Hospitalières during the 1750s reveals how Jansenist lawyers and magistrates deployed the controversies over these “model” nuns to censure episcopal despotism and to legitimate parliamentary intervention in religious affairs, thereby opening the way to prescribing constitutional limits on the monarchy itself.

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Christina Toren

To analyse the ontogeny of sociality in any given case is to throw into question various current ideas of sociality as instinct, or as based in an innate theory of mind, or as the artefact of actor-networks, or as necessitating certain ideas of agency. This article argues that an understanding of human autopoiesis as an historical process provides for a unified model of human being in which all the many and manifold forms of sociality can be seen to be the emergent artefact of human ontogeny.

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Limits and Limitlessness

Exploring Time in Scientific Practice

Antonia Walford

This article explores some of the ways that time figures in the scientific practices of instrumental micrometeorology and climatic and weather modeling. It draws on ethnographic work done with the Large-Scale Biosphere-Atmosphere Experiment in Amazonia (LBA), an international scientific project that aims to assess the role of the Amazon forest in the global carbon cycle and to provide sustainable techniques for the future management of the region. An examination of the knowledge practices that have emerged from this ethnography (such as calibration and prediction) provides an opportunity to rethink the relation between 'natural time' and 'social time(s)'. This allows for a discussion of the roles that certainty, uncertainty, finiteness, and limitlessness play in both scientific and ethnographic practice.

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La integración en América Latina

Entre el pasado y el futuro

Hugo Fazio Vengoa

*Full article is in Spanish

English abstract: The article begins by analyzing the structural and contextual factors as well as the problematic asymmetries that have paralyzed integration efforts in Latin America at the beginning of this new century. Subsequently, the author proposes a model of social, ethical, and culturally inclusive integration in a cosmopolitan spirit.

Spanish abstract: El artículo analiza en un primer momento los factores estructurales coyunturales y las problemáticas asimetrías que han conducido a la parálisis de los esfuerzos integradores en América Latina en los inicios del nuevo siglo. En un segundo momento se propone un esquema de integración social, ética y culturalmente incluyente dentro de un espíritu cosmopolita.

French abstract: Cet article commence par analyser les facteurs structurels et contextuels ainsi que les asymétries problématiques qui ont paralysé les efforts d'intégration en Amérique Latine au début de ce nouveau siècle. Ensuite, l'auteur propose un modèle d'intégration sociale, éthique et culturellement inclusif, basé sur une logique cosmopolite.

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Editorial

Social Quality, Values, Convergence and the European Social Model

David Phillips

Unlike the last issue of the European Journal of Social Quality, which dealt entirely with social quality in individual nations, this issue focuses exclusively on the European dimension with particular emphasis on values associated with social quality in both an historical and comparative context. A central question running through several papers relates to convergence: are European societies converging and, if so, then to what are they converging? Is the European Social Model still viable or is the enlarged EU moving inexorably towards a ‘race to the bottom’ in the context of trying to reach the Lisbon goal of becoming the world’s most dynamic and competitive economy in the dog-eat-dog political economy of an unstoppable globalisation?

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Assaf Meydani

In recent decades, the role that national supreme courts have played in shaping and determining institutional change has been studied from a number of angles. However, this vast literature has not produced a dynamic model that is capable of illuminating the impact of supreme courts on national policy or institutional change. This article proposes such a dynamic model using perspectives based on the 'shared mental model' and the concept of 'political entrepreneurship'. Adapting hypotheses from the neo-institutionalism literature, it develops a procedural model for analyzing how political rules are changed formally in a democratic system. The analysis also explores the political entrepreneur role that supreme courts play in developing institutional change and addressing social problems. This model is then used to study the Supreme Court in Israel.

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Odette Lobato-Calleros, Humberto Rivera, Hugo Serrato, María Elena Gómez, and Ignacio Méndez Ramírez

This article reports on the methodology for setting the Mexican User Satisfaction Index for Social Programs (MUSI-SP) as tested in seven national social programs. The evaluation is based on Structural Equation Modeling (SEM). How satisfaction takes the central place of the SEM, which postulates its causes and effects, contributes to the increased validity and reliability of satisfaction indicators that allow benchmarking between social programs. The MUSI model is an adaptation of the American Customer Satisfaction Index (ACSI) model. The MUSI methodology includes qualitative and quantitative techniques. The estimation model is by the Partial Least Squares (PLS). In each of the seven social programs, no statistical evidence was found to reject the main relationships postulated by the ACSI’s model: that Perceived Quality impacts Satisfaction, and Satisfaction impacts Trust. The improvement opportunity areas were also identified for each program. These results give valid and reliable feedback to public policies.

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Bringing the state back in

Corporate social responsibility and the paradoxes of Norwegian state capitalism in the international energy sector

Ståle Knudsen, Dinah Rajak, Siri Lange, and Isabelle Hugøy

transnational corporate capitalism and the Nordic Model of welfare capitalism, between global diversification and notions about Norway as the “humanitarian superpower.” We chart the importance of state ownership in the energy sector, with a particular focus on