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Materiality as an Agency of Knowledge

Competing Forms of Knowledge in Rachel's Tomb in Tiberias

Nimrod Luz

that against the current flux and uncertainty of what counts as truth, we need to take materiality more seriously in our ethnography of pilgrimage sites. Further, complementing previous understandings that have emphasized sacred texts as sufficient

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Sonia Hazard

Material things and phenomena have come to vie with belief and thought as worthy subjects of inquiry in the interdisciplinary study of religion. Yet, to the extent that we are justified in speaking of a “material turn”, no consensus has arisen about what materiality is or does. This article offers a preliminary sketch of the diverse terrain of material religion studies, delineating three dominant approaches to religious materiality as well as an emerging alternative. It argues that the dominant approaches—respectively characterized by an emphasis on symbolism, material disciplines, and phenomenological experience—continue to privilege the human subject while material things themselves struggle to come into sharp focus. That is, they remain anthropocentric and beholden to the biases against materiality deeply entrenched in the study of religion. Such biases may be negotiated more successfully via the emerging alternative “new materialism”.

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The Postwar Schoolbook as a Material Artifact

Two Greek Reading Textbooks from 1944

Niki Sioki

In contrast to the countries of Western Europe, the end of the Second World War did not bring political restoration, economic recovery, or the emergence of a new social order to Greece. Subscribing to the view that the material form of books and their typography convey meaning, this article presents a comparative study of the design and production of a reading primer and a third-year reading textbook, both of which were published in a climate of political and social disorder. Drawing on surviving copies of the books, educational laws, teachers’ recollections, and archival material, this article examines the ways in which the sociopolitical environment and technological conditions of a publication affect the ways in which texts are shaped into book form.

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Diana Espírito Santo

which there are thousands. It is, by all accounts, an instrumentalist ritual complex (of which there are several branches) that aims at the perpetual construction and preservation of a kind of self-system, one that encompasses material, mineral, animal

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Plastic Packaging, Food Supply, and Everyday Life

Adopting a Social Practice Perspective in Social-Ecological Research

Lukas Sattlegger, Immanuel Stieß, Luca Raschewski, and Katharina Reindl

problems of plastic waste are closely connected to the material characteristics and qualities of plastic items. Littering, recycling rates, and toxicological impacts ( Zimmermann et al. 2019 ) are very heterogeneous for different types of plastic packaging

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Afterword

Dangerous Mobilities

Mimi Sheller

. Even seemingly solid things like buildings move, and as Gail Adams-Hutcheson brings out, entangle us in “vibrant materialities.” Humans also face other dangers, associated with our bodily needs for breathable air, clean water, and warmth, each

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Kate Pride Brown

be unrelated to the actual physical characteristics of the environment ( Kyle and Chick 2007 ). A wide literature has grown around the social construction of landscape, nature and place (cf. Stokowski 2002 ). However, nature has materiality that

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Ehren Helmut Pflugfelder

cannot be accounted for by discourse alone. The resulting discursive-material dynamics generate persuasive formations of power to which we could become more attuned through thoughtful research and action in autonomous vehicle development. In what follows

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Emplacing Smells

Spatialities and Materialities of ‘Gypsiness’

Andreea Racleș and Ana Ivasiuc

that the ‘Gypsy’ is not, the rationalities at stake in the othering of the ‘Gypsy’ as well as the corporealities, materialities, spatialities and sensorialities underlying such dynamics need careful unpacking. This article joins the scholarly debate

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Infrastructures of progress and dispossession

Collective responses to shrinking water access among farmers in Arequipa, Peru

Astrid Oberborbeck Andersen

occurring elsewhere ( GDAT 2012 ; Heynen et al. 2007 ). Well aware of the danger of singularizing the understanding of global and local processes, I use the term “neoliberal urban ecology” to qualify the way socio-economical, political, and material