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Dharma Power

Searching for Security in Post–New Order Indonesia

Kari Telle

Security concerns are creeping into new aspects of everyday life in Indonesia, resulting in new organizational forms and ways of perceiving self and society. Stressing the cultural shaping of all security discourses, this article examines how members of the Balinese minority on the island Lombok have formed a Hindu-inspired civilian security force known as Dharma Wisesa. I argue that the appeal of this movement is located in its attempts to fuse domains of power that the modern state has prised apart. Having appropriated the magic of the state, the Dharma Wisesa movement also maintains relations with a 'spirit army' that provides supernatural support. Such practices draw into question the notion of secular modernity and suggest that authority is constituted by allying oneself with different forms of power, both visible and invisible.

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Crisis, Power, and Policymaking in the New Europe

Why Should Anthropologists Care?

Bilge Firat

At a time when European integration faces many crises, the efficacy of public policies decided in Brussels, and in member state capitals, for managing the everyday lives of average Europeans demands scrutiny. Most attuned to how global uncertainties interact with local realities, anthropologists and ethnographers have paid scant attention to public policies that are created by the EU, by member state governments and by local authorities, and to the collective, organised, and individual responses they elicit in this part of the world. Our critical faculties and means to test out established relations between global–local, centre–periphery, macro–micro are crucial to see how far the EU's normative power and European integration as a governance model permeates peoples' and states' lives in Europe, broadly defined. Identifying the strengths and shortcomings in the literature, this review essay scrutinises anthropological scholarship on culture, power and policy in a post-Foucaultian Europe.

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Laura Verdi

In this article I will discuss the human body, both physical and social, as an instrument of political and aesthetic power and will analyze the processes of its social construction, starting with the notion of Corpus Mysticum Christi as the metaphoric organizational structure of consensus to power. From the Low Middle Ages to the present day, we will observe how the treatment of the body has evolved and how present-day show business and politics make use of charisma, from typically conceived 'concentrated stardom' to a conception of 'diffused stardom'. Both models are given aesthetic significance and rhetorical amplification, thus resulting in images of power and a means of social control. The conclusion of the article examines how power relations are currently being affected in a social environment that is highly influenced by the media and how, no matter which era is being discussed, the existence of the social body still depends on the physical body.

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The Vanishing Power Plant

Infrastructure and Ignorance in Peri-urban Ulaanbaatar

Morten Axel Pedersen

infrastructure project that is never to be built. Known as ‘Power Plant #5’, the 300 MW thermal power plant was planned and tendered in 2008 by the Ulaanbaatar city municipality and the Ministry of Mines and Energy as part of a national strategy to beef up

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Enemies of the people

Theorizing dispossession and mirroring conspiracy in the Republic of Georgia

Katrine Bendtsen Gotfredsen

forces in what seems, paradoxically, to be an equally opaque and clear setup. Opaque in the sense that we hear of powerful people conspiring to control local and global events and of power and sources of political and economic influence hidden from view

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Adopting a Resistance Lens

An Exploration of Power and Legitimacy in Transitional Justice

Julie Bernath and Sandra Rubli

Within transitional justice scholarship of the past ten years, “power” and “legitimacy” have increasingly become objects of study, in particular for scholars taking a critical stance to a normative conceptualization and implementation of

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Introduction

Desire for the political in the aftermath of the Cold War

Dace Dzenovska and Nicholas De Genova

Genova 2016 ; Dzenovska 2013 , 2018 ). Desire for the political The “desire for the political,” as we are positing it, is shaped by two sets of tensions: first, the desire to criticize power via forms of action conventionally characterized as “politics

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Not Soft Power, But Speaking Softly

‘Everyday Diplomacy’ in Field Relations during the Russia-Ukraine Conflict

Jeremy Morris

manipulation in Russia. They also came hot on the heels of what was seen as a novel and rare Russian success in the field of deploying ‘soft power’ through the successful hosting of the Olympics. This adoption of a strategy to ‘attract and co-opt’ (soft power

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Vertical Love

Forms of Submission and Top-Down Power in Orthodox Ethiopia

Diego Maria Malara and Tom Boylston

Ethiopian Orthodox Christians consider top-down power a fact of life. In religious, political, and domestic spheres (and in the articulations and overlaps between them), showing proper deference to power is a critical social skill, alongside

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Introduction

Ethnographic Engagement with Bureaucratic Violence

Erin R. Eldridge and Amanda J. Reinke

decisions are made, knowledge is created, and power is exerted in ways that affect the everyday lives of citizens. Ethnography is thus well suited for unveiling the “humanness” and everyday realities of bureaucratic practice and interactions (2011: 7). In an