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Introduction

Doing Ritual While Thinking about It?

Emma Gobin

Focusing on the reflexive attitudes that religious specialists adopt toward their ceremonial practices, this themed section proposes to renew a line of inquiry developed around the complex and protean link that exists between ritual and reflexivity

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Assessing and Adapting Rituals That Reproduce a Collectivity

The Large-Scale Rituals of the Repkong Tantrists in Tibet

Nicolas Sihlé

In discussions on processes of ritual assessment and modification, the rituals examined are most often of a ‘performance-centered’ nature. 1 I am drawing here on Atkinson’s (1989: 14–15) useful distinction between ‘liturgy-centered’ and

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Jens Kreinath and Refika Sariönder

( Kehl–Bodrogi 1988: 121, 230 ; Markoff 1986: 42 ; Vorhoff 1995: 64–68 ). Organized in cultural associations, Alevis started to make their ritual practice intentionally accessible to non–initiated Alevis and to non–Alevis, in contrast to their former

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Introduction

Repatriation and Ritual, Repatriation as Ritual

Laura Peers, Lotten Gustafsson Reinius and Jennifer Shannon

This special section of Museum Worlds explores the entire process of repatriation as a set of rituals enacted by claimants and museum staff: a set of highlighted performances enacting multiple sets of cosmological beliefs, symbolic systems, and political structures. Some of the rituals of repatriation occur within the space of Indigenous ceremonies; others happen within the museum spaces of collections storage and the boardroom; others, such as handover ceremonies, are coproduced and culturally hybrid. From the often obsessive bureaucracy associated with repatriation claims to the affective moment of handover, repatriation articulates a moral landscape where memory, responsibility, guilt, identity, sanctity, place, and ownership are given a ritual form. Theory about ritual is used here to situate the articles in this section, which together form a cross-cultural examination of ritual meaning and form across repatriation processes.

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Assessing Ritual Experience in Contemporary Spiritualities

The Practice of’sharing’ in a New Age Variant of Umbanda

Viola Teisenhoffer

In contemporary Pagan and New Age rituals aimed at self-enhancement and personal development, verbal exchanges generally referred to by the emic term’sharing’ often follow the ritual endeavors. The experts who conduct these rituals (whether

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The Death Throes of Sacrificed Chicken

Triggering Critical Reflexive Stances on Ritual Action in Togo

Marie Daugey

This article aims to shed light on a divination episode, which most blood sacrifices begin with in many West African societies, by examining how this ritual practice is carried out among the Kabye of northern Togo and by analyzing it in relation to

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Stacy M. K. George

the rituals, symbols, emotions, and various religious interactional procedures adopted by the Tea Party. Using qualitative methods, including in-depth participant observation in public Tea Party meetings and personal interviews with Tea Partiers, this

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The Burial Rituals of the Khakass People

Main Factors of Evolution

Larisa Anzhiganova and Margarita Archimacheva

Ethnic cultures experience great transformations that affect their sustainability and holistic nature. However, the traditions related to life and death are, remarkably, persisting. This articles focuses on funerary customs and burial rituals that are significant for the Khakass people. In this research of the Khakass burial rituals we bring together archaeological, ethnographic, and folklore material that reveals unique data about funerary customs. The article reviews the burial rituals in historical perspective and focuses on changes the rituals have undergone. It concludes with the summary of transformations in contemporary burial practices.

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Ritual and Emotions

Moving Relations, Patterned Effusions

François Berthomé and Michael Houseman

This article reconsiders the connection between 'ritual' and 'emotion' from a pragmatic, relational perspective in which rituals are seen as dynamic interactive contexts and emotions as fairly short-lived emergent properties and integral components of these interactions. It emphasizes ritual's capacity to reallocate social positions by instantiating characteristic patterns of relationship, and the way particular emotions crystallize and express these patterns. In short, ritual emotions are treated as the sensate qualities of ritual relationships. From this standpoint, emotions feature in ceremonial settings not as striking experiences grafted onto practices and representations, but as constitutive aspects of ritual interactions themselves, whose properties of bodily salience and relational reflexivity both reflect and inflect the latter's course in a variety of sensory, expressive, moral, and strategic ways. Four issues relating to ritual and emotion are discussed within the framework of particular ceremonial practices that have been the object of much recent research: (1) the ritual expression of emotions in funerary laments, (2) the waning of cathartic models in the interpretation of rites of affliction, (3) the intense emotional arousal characteristic of initiatory ordeals, and (4) the self-constructive, affective dimensions of contemporary devotional practices.

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Mourning Palestine

Death and Grief Rituals

Aref Abu-Rabia and Nibal Khalil

This article presents various mourning rituals and death rites as they are practised in Palestine. It focuses on differences in the mourning experience among fellahin and Bedouin Arabs but also shows certain parallels in their mourning and grieving customs. The article provides information on the prescribed set of rituals that Palestinians perform, beginning with how the body is treated and the way that it is prepared for burial. Combinations of mourning practices, which vary from rending one's garments to throwing earth on one's head, provide socially sanctioned expressions of grief and sorrow. Mourning practices differ between women and men: the former lament loudly and scratch their faces, while among the latter tears are neither encouraged nor welcomed. Parallels can be seen in these rituals with mourning for Palestine.