entering direct controversial argument, which indeed I have taken pains to avoid as far as possible. (Edward Burnett Tylor, quoted in Bohannan and Glazer 1988: 65, 76 ) Edward Burnett Tylor, once a committed Quaker, espoused a vision of anthropology that
A Discursive Analysis of a Century of Anthropological Writings on Missionary Ethnographers
Travis Warren Cooper
describe as pristine. ( Burton and Burton 2007: 210 ) Anthropologists in general have a negative attitude toward missionaries, especially when they conceive of missionaries as agents of cultural change … [A]nthropology students learn that missionaries are
As anthropology transitioned toward the study of peasant villages in the post–World War II era, articles and monographs analyzing Buddhist belief and ritual appeared more regularly. What began as a conversation among primarily anthropologists of
So What Is the Anthropology of Buddhism About?
David N. Gellner
It is simultaneously flattering and alarming to be represented as having written a key synthesis on the anthropology of Buddhism 27 years ago. 1 The alarm arises not just from the passage of time but mainly from the fact—pointed out by Erick White
Ressentiment and Christian Nationalism in the Anthropology of Christianity
locate them, and—as developments in the anthropology of Christianity suggest—there are also many paths to get there. But one path starts at Virginia Beach, Virginia. While there are many fine lodging establishments in this city, if you are going to be
Legacies, Trajectories, and Comparison in the Anthropology of Buddhism
Nicolas Sihlé and Patrice Ladwig
The Project of an ‘Anthropology of Buddhism’ To the outside observer, the anthropology of Buddhism may give the impression of having already established a lineage (see, e.g., Robbins 2007: 5 ), perhaps especially visible from the 1960s to the 1990s
A Critical Assessment
Recent cognitive and evolutionary approaches to the study of religion have been seen by many as a naturalistic alternative to conventional anthropological interpretations. Whereas anthropologists have traditionally accounted for the existence of religion in terms of social and cultural determinants, cognitive scientists have emphasized the innate—that is pre-cultural—constraints placed by natural selection on the formation and acquisition of religious ideas. This article provides a critical assessment of the main theoretical proposals put forward by cognitive scientists and suggests possible interactions, perhaps interdependencies, with more standard anthropological sensibilities, especially between cognitive and evolutionary perspectives that see religion as a by-product of innate psychological dispositions and anthropological approaches that take the 'meaningful' nature of religious symbols as their point of departure.
Anthropological Interlocutions of Sport and Religion
Thomas F. Carter
Religion has been a central object of anthropological inquiry since its earliest days. In contrast, sport has remained an ancillary object of interest at best. Nonetheless, anthropologists have written some provocative analyses that challenge other disciplinary approaches to sport. Principally, those analyses emerged out of anthropological approaches to religion. Concerned with the ways in which anthropology theorizes and analyzes both religion and sport, this article begins by assessing the modern-day myth that 'sport is a religion'. It then compares subject-specific approaches to the relationships between sport and religion. The article then moves to the anthropological focus on ritual as it developed in the study of religion and how those ideas were then applied to analyses of sport. The article concludes with an examination of how the anthropology of sport has moved beyond those initial efforts before discussing various anthropological approaches to sport and religion.
When compared to the extensive historiography on missionary activity, the anthropology of missions is a relative newcomer, emerging as such in the context of the recent critique of the colonial system. In view of the importance of historiographical literature in outlining the subject, on the one hand, and of the impact of the decolonization of the African continent on anthropology, on the other hand, my purposes in this essay are, firstly, to examine how the historiography of colonial America and of African colonialism has handled the subject of missions; secondly, to describe the role of missionary activity in the historiographical debate in the context of the crisis of colonialism; and, lastly, to analyze how post-colonial critique has given rise to a new anthropology of missions.
Ethnographies of Private Security
Erella Grassiani and Tessa Diphoorn
Security Outsourcing ( Berndtsson and Kinsey 2016 ). This special section builds directly on this extensive scholarly literature on private security, but aims to emphasize insights being produced within anthropology, a discipline that began to focus on the