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Now You See Me, Now You Don’t

Medical Design Anthropology, Improvisational Practices and Future Imaginings

Jonathan Ventura and Wendy Gunn

Designing Medical Products Designers and anthropologists in collaboration have attempted to utilise designed products to influence users’ behaviour ( Tromp et al. 2011 ). However, when faced with the design of medical products that a person wears

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Sentimentalising Persons and Things

Creating Normative Arrangements of Bodies through Courtroom Talk

Jonas Bens

The Prosecutor v. Ahmad Al Faqi Al Mahdi was the first case to be tried before the International Criminal Court (ICC) that dealt with not the killing of persons but the destruction of things. When Islamist insurgent troops from the north of Mali

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Liminality and Missing Persons

Encountering the Missing in Postwar Bosnia-Herzegovina

Laura Huttunen

political framing of their deaths. Of course, there are many other places beyond Bosnia and ex-Yugoslavia that have struggled with the issue of missing persons or continue to do so. There is also a growing body of research addressing the issue of missing

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Files Circulation and the Forms of Legal Experts

Agency and Personhood in the Argentine Supreme Court

Leticia Barrera

A common assumption in Western legal cultures is that judicial law-making is materialised in practices that resemble the operation of a professional bureaucracy, practices that are also central to the construction of knowledge in other systems, such as accounting, audit, science, and even ethnography (Dauber 1995; Strathern 2000; Riles 2000, 2004, 2006; Maurer 2002; Yngvesson and Coutin 2006). This argument situates the judiciary as a formalistic organization that builds its ambition of universality on the procurement and dissemination of knowledge on a rational basis. Drawing on ethnographic research in the Argentine Supreme Court, this paper seeks to unpack this assumption through a detailed look at how the figures of legal bureaucrats, in particular law clerks, become visible through the documentary practices they perform within the judicial apparatus. As these practices unfold, they render visible these subjects in different forms, though not always accessible to outsiders. Persons are displayed through a bureaucratic circuit of files that simultaneously furthers and denies human agency while reinforcing the division of labour within the institution. This dynamic, I argue, can be understood in light of Marilyn Strathern’s (1988) insights about the forms of objectification and personification that operate in two “ethnographically conceived” social domains (Pottage 2001:113): a Euro-American commodity-driven economy, and Melanesia’s economy based on gift-exchange.

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Sarah Horton

’s freedom to any extent. One must further note that the authentic person must, for ontological reasons, be in bad faith to a limited degree: the very nature of the for-itself is incompatible with a “perfect” authenticity that a priori excludes bad faith, so

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Professionalizing Persons and Foretelling Futures

Capacity Building in Post-Earthquake Haiti

Kristin LaHatte

lose sight of the fact that within all these kinds, and at all levels of their implementation, capacity building efforts actually occur through persons. In this way, we can see capacity building as ultimately a process of transformation, specifically

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German Displaced Persons Camps (1945-1948)

Orthodox Jewish Responses to the Holocaust

Gershon Greenberg

Orthodox Jews in postwar German Displaced Persons camps experienced the Holocaust's rupture of God's covenantal relationship with history and the eclipse of sacred reality. They sought to recapture that reality, even though the continuity of tradition that held it had been shattered. This was done by voluntarily reviving tradition, as if by doing so the sacred could be invoked. Following momentary suspension, they sought to restore ethnic-generational purity and traditional ritual. They invested holiday celebration with Holocaust meaning. On the level of thought they expanded Israel's metahistory to include the unprecedented tragedy and intensified their own contributions of Torah and Teshuvah to the higher drama, and recommitted their trust that divine light was implicit to reality's darkness.

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Zhuoyao Li

Recent discussions by Martha Nussbaum and Steven Wall shed new light on the concept of reasonableness in political liberalism and whether the inclusion of epistemic elements in the concept necessarily makes political liberalism lose its antiperfectionist appeal. This article argues that Nussbaum’s radical solution to eliminate the epistemic component of reasonableness is neither helpful nor necessary. Instead, adopting a revised understanding of epistemic reasonableness in terms of a weak view of rationality that is procedural, external and second-order rather than a strong view that is substantial, internal and first-order can help political liberalism maintain an epistemic dimension in the idea of reasonableness without becoming perfectionist. In addition, political liberalism can defend a stronger account of respect for persons against liberal perfectionism on the basis of the revised understanding of epistemic reasonableness. Both arguments serve to demonstrate the strength of the political liberal project.

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Dennis Masaka

In this article, I argue that individuals could be entitled to rights, outside those that are communally conferred, as part of the primary requirement of being ‘persons’ in the African communitarian set-up if the terms ‘person’ and ‘personhood’ are understood differently from the way they are currently deployed in the communitarian discourse. The distinction between these two terms is the basis of my thesis where clarity on their meanings could be helpful in establishing the possibility of ascribing rights outside those that are communally conferred. I argue that ontologically, a ‘person’ is prior to ‘personhood’ (understood in the normative sense) which is considered to find its fuller expression in a community and by virtue of this, I think that he or she is entitled to some rights outside those that are defined and conferred by the community. This is my point of departure in this article.

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Katarzyna Person, Keith Kahn-Harris, and Debbie Young-Somers

Polonsky, Antony, The Jews in Poland and Russia, vol. 1, 1350 to 1881, Oxford, Littman Library of Jewish Civilization, 2010, xiv + 534 pp., ISBN 978-1-874774-64-8 (pb).

Polonsky, Antony, The Jews in Poland and Russia, vol. 2, 1881 to 1914, Oxford, Littman Library of Jewish Civilization, 2010, 492 pp., ISBN 978-1-904113-83-6 (pb).

Polonsky, Antony, The Jews in Poland and Russia, vol. 3, 1914 to 2008, Oxford, Littman Library of Jewish Civilization, 2012, 1040 pp., ISBN 978-1-904113-48-5 (pb).

Shenhav, Yehouda, Beyond the Two State Solution: A Jewish Political Essay, Cambridge, Polity Press, 2012

Bayfield, Tony, Alan Race and Ataullag Siddiqui (eds), Beyond the Dysfunctional Family, London, The Manor House Abrahamic Dialogue Group, 2012, 297 pp., £12.95 (pb), ISBN 978-1468167474.