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Michael Herzfeld

, but also that it is vulnerable (see Collinson and Hu 2020 ). This condescension feeds greedily on images of the ‘ugly American’, who, as an object of foreign revulsion, became the symbol and embodiment of what I call ‘cultural intimacy’. 3 Perhaps

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Andrew Dawson

celebrated disdain for authority (or ‘larrikinism’ as I label it) and a concealed over-respect for rules and procedures (or ‘bureaucratise’ as I label it). My conceptualisation of the tension rests on Michael Herzfeld's (2016) idea of cultural intimacy

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Interreligious Cultural Practice as Lived Reality

The Case of Muslim and Orthodox Shepherds in Middle Albania

Eckehard Pistrick

This essay provides grass-roots insights into interreligiosity in Middle Albania. I focus on two individuals, Muslim Arif and Orthodox Anastas, to show how notions of cultural intimacy prevail over hegemonic discourses on religious identity that have re-emerged in postsocialist and 'post-atheist' Albania. The process of religious revitalisation took place simultaneously with a pervasive reshaping of local cultural identity. These discourses give simultaneously an opportunity for religious differentiation and symbolic contestations, as well as for diverse collaborations on a social, cultural and economic level. I illustrate how cultural intimacy is performed and cultivated as a shared practice of multipart singing, and understood by the local shepherds not as a marker of difference but as common ground for mutual dialogue. By sharing the social activity of singing the shepherds do not only form a 'sonic community' but also celebrate an interreligious 'community of friends'.

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Bridges or Walls? Or Bridges are Walls?

Hegemony, Situational Selection and Counter Narratives at the Boundaries of Spain and Europe

Elaine McIlwraith

1974: 340 ). Michael Herzfeld (2019) refers to the knowing which are the most appropriate features to access in varying situations as ‘cultural intimacy’. The exclusion that cultural intimacy as a symbolic boundary foments within the state, when

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Playing the edge ball

The politics of transgression in land development in southern China

Lan Wei and Minh T.N. Nguyen

This article analyzes a particular form of everyday politics through the case of land development in a Chinese village. Commonly referred to as edge ball politics (cabianqiu), it implies the act of transgressing certain rules or laws and testing the limits of what is socially and legally possible. We found that the state, the village leadership, private developers, and villagers all vie to influence the outcomes of land development in the village by engaging in this practice. We suggest that edge ball politics plays into the Chinese state’s governing strategies, which allow for a manageable space of negotiation to ward off a collective sense of injustice in the face of rampant dispossession of the weak and accumulation by the powerful.

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How popular Confucianism became embarrassing

On the spatial and moral center of the house in rural China

Hans Steinmüller

In the past, most farmhouses in central China had an ancestral shrine and a paper scroll with the Chinese letters for "heaven, earth, emperor, ancestors, and teachers" on the wall opposite the main entrance. The ancestral shrine and paper scroll were materializations of the central principles of popular Confucianism. This article deals with their past and present. It describes how in everyday action and in ritual this shrine marked a spatial and moral center. During the Cultural Revolution (1966-1976) the ancestral shrines and paper scrolls were destroyed, and replaced by a poster of Mao Zedong. Although the moral principles of popular Confucianism were dismissed by intellectuals and politicians, Mao Zedong was worshipped in ways reminiscent of popular Confucian ritual. The Mao poster and the paper scroll stand for a continuity of a spatial-moral practice of centering. What has changed however is the public evaluation of such a local practice, and this tension can produce a double embarrassment. Elements of popular Confucianism (which had been forcefully denied in the past) remain somewhat embarrassing for many people in countryside. At the same time urbanites sometimes inversely perceive the Maoist condemnation of popular Confucianism as an awkward survival of peasant narrow-mindedness—all the more so as Confucian traditions are now reinvented and revitalized as cultural heritage.

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Labours of Inter-religious Tolerance

Cultural and Spatial Intimacy in Croatia and Turkey

Jeremy F. Walton

Based on ethnographic research in Croatia and Turkey, this article explores two projects of inter-religious tolerance in relation to broader logics of cultural and spatial intimacy. In the Croatian case, the focus is on the public discourse surrounding Rijeka's Nova Džamija [New Mosque] which pivoted on a perception of the shared victimization of Catholic Croats and Muslim Bosnians at the hands of Serbs during the wars of the 1990s. For Turkey, we focus on a project in Ankara that aims to provide a single site of worship for Sunni and Alevi Muslims, a 'mosque-cem house'. The analysis highlights some common formations of tolerance and cultural intimacy expressed by both projects, as well as the divergent spatial practices and modes of spatial intimacy that distinguish the two sites.

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Beyond Revolution: Reshaping Nationhood through Senses and Affects

Myriam Lamrani

Framing this special issue within a broader understanding of the concept of aesthetics as affective, sensory, and emotional entanglements, I start this introduction by grounding the present endeavour in the scholarship on revolution, senses, and affects. I then consider the ways in which this intertwining framework of multisensory and affective modalities proves to be particularly productive in exploring the idea of nationhood and politics after revolutions. Such a focus illuminates how specific dimensions of national narratives become only perceptible once one considers the aesthetical relationship between people’s bodies and the body politic. As revolutions move back and forth from the nation to people’s bodily sensorium, this collection uncovers the multiple facets of (post)revolutionary collective identities. This sustained attention to the perceptual, as a zone not only of ‘cultural intimacy’ but of national determinacy, I propose, also provides an occasion to reckon with politics beyond revolution itself.

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Andrew Dawson and Simone Dennis

his analysis) is the nation. In this respect, Herzfeld's concept of cultural intimacy is especially productive and telling. Contra relational theories which define the identity of the nation (and/or ethnic group) as an outcome of its juxtaposition

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Not Soft Power, But Speaking Softly

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

Jeremy Morris

to phantomic effects. And visible foreignness of a researcher’s personhood adds to that irritability, even if a researcher has achieved partial insider status with some informants, even a surrogate form of ‘cultural intimacy’ ( Herzfeld 1997 ). But