American Ethnologist

Cover image for Vol. 39 Issue 4

November 2012

Volume 39, Issue 4

Pages 661–866

  1. Elections and media

    1. Top of page
    2. Elections and media
    3. Affect at the limits of the human
    4. Oil and corporate illusions
    5. Precarity, the sacred, and self-definition
    6. Book Reviews
    1. Grown folks radio: U.S. election politics and a “hidden” black counterpublic (pages 661–672)

      MICAELA DI LEONARDO

      Article first published online: 2 NOV 2012 | DOI: 10.1111/j.1548-1425.2012.01386.x

  2. Affect at the limits of the human

    1. Top of page
    2. Elections and media
    3. Affect at the limits of the human
    4. Oil and corporate illusions
    5. Precarity, the sacred, and self-definition
    6. Book Reviews
    1. Producing affect: Transnational volunteerism in a Malaysian orangutan rehabilitation center (pages 673–687)

      RHEANA “JUNO” SALAZAR PARREÑAS

      Article first published online: 2 NOV 2012 | DOI: 10.1111/j.1548-1425.2012.01387.x

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      In a postcolonial economy of volunteer tourism from the Global North to the Global South, mostly British women pay thousands of U.S. dollars to travel to Sarawak, on Malaysian Borneo, to work in a wildlife rehabilitation center. There, in a program operated as a public–private partnership, they provide hard labor to maintain and improve the facility and assist subcontracted indigenous Iban men in caring for displaced orangutans. Through the concept of “custodial labor,” I argue that affect produced at the interface of bodies in the work of orangutan rehabilitation also produces an unequal distribution of risk and vulnerability among those involved, across differences of species, classes, nationalities, and genders.

    2. Commentary

      Commentary: What affect produces (pages 688–691)

      DANILYN RUTHERFORD

      Article first published online: 2 NOV 2012 | DOI: 10.1111/j.1548-1425.2012.01388.x

  3. Oil and corporate illusions

    1. Top of page
    2. Elections and media
    3. Affect at the limits of the human
    4. Oil and corporate illusions
    5. Precarity, the sacred, and self-definition
    6. Book Reviews
    1. Offshore work: Oil, modularity, and the how of capitalism in Equatorial Guinea (pages 692–709)

      HANNAH APPEL

      Article first published online: 2 NOV 2012 | DOI: 10.1111/j.1548-1425.2012.01389.x

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      Oil scholarship often focuses on oil as money, as if the industry were a mere revenue-producing machine—a black box with predictable effects. Drawing on fieldwork in Equatorial Guinea, I take the industry as my object of analysis: infrastructures, labor regimes, forms of expertise and fantasy. Starting from a visit to an offshore rig, I explore the idea of “modularity”—mobile personnel, technologies, and legal structures that enable offshore work in Equatorial Guinea to function “just like” offshore work elsewhere.

    2. Commentary

      Commentary: The corporation, oil, and the financialization of risk (pages 710–715)

      SUZANA SAWYER

      Article first published online: 2 NOV 2012 | DOI: 10.1111/j.1548-1425.2012.01390.x

  4. Precarity, the sacred, and self-definition

    1. Top of page
    2. Elections and media
    3. Affect at the limits of the human
    4. Oil and corporate illusions
    5. Precarity, the sacred, and self-definition
    6. Book Reviews
    1. “Corn is food, not contraband”: The right to “free trade” at the Mexico–Guatemala border (pages 716–734)

      REBECCA B. GALEMBA

      Article first published online: 2 NOV 2012 | DOI: 10.1111/j.1548-1425.2012.01391.x

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      With no local outlet to sell their corn harvests as a result of neoliberal policies, residents on the Mexico–Guatemala border pursued an alternative strategy. They mobilized to smuggle corn from Mexico to Guatemala and asserted that this constituted legitimate “free trade.” Residents reinterpreted free trade to imply their right to “freely” sell corn over the border, thereby challenging the implications of official free-trade policies that were anything but free.

    2. Beauty as control in the new Saigon: Eviction, new urban zones, and atomized dissent in a Southeast Asian city (pages 735–750)

      ERIK HARMS

      Article first published online: 2 NOV 2012 | DOI: 10.1111/j.1548-1425.2012.01392.x

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      The eviction of residents to make way for a “new urban zone” in Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam, is legitimized by notions of building a beautiful, breathable, and orderly city. Although angry about their unfair treatment in the eviction process, residents ultimately support this discourse of beauty. They challenge eviction through individual squabbles over compensation rates, land measurements, and resettlement sites. In the process, dissent becomes atomized and residents reproduce a mode of valuing land based primarily on monetary value.

    3. You have full text access to this OnlineOpen article
      “This is our little hajj”: Muslim holy sites and reappropriation of the sacred landscape in contemporary Bosnia (pages 751–765)

      DAVID HENIG

      Article first published online: 2 NOV 2012 | DOI: 10.1111/j.1548-1425.2012.01393.x

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      Bosnian Muslims’ understandings of Islam and relationships with the sacred landscape have undergone significant transformations since the dissolution of socialist Yugoslavia. I explore these transformations as I analyze discourses and debates on what constitutes “correct” Islamic tradition in Bosnia today, when Muslim practice has been exposed to a global Islamic orthodoxy and entangled in new supraregional hierarchies of power, values, and moral imagination.

    4. Naming chaos: Accident, precariousness, and the spirits of wildness in urban Thai spirit cults (pages 766–778)

      ANDREW ALAN JOHNSON

      Article first published online: 2 NOV 2012 | DOI: 10.1111/j.1548-1425.2012.01394.x

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      Conceptions of wildness (theuan) and accident pervade the Thai informal economy and infuse certain forms of popular religious practice. I look at the propitiation of wilderness spirits in urban Bangkok at shrines that migrant and marginal workers see as sites of hope and danger. I argue that, by naming the potential for accident and death as a spirit with which they can communicate, informal-economy workers attempt to change the potential for misfortune into its opposite.

    5. “Good individualism”? Psychology, ethics, and neoliberalism in postsocialist Russia (pages 804–818)

      TOMAS MATZA

      Article first published online: 2 NOV 2012 | DOI: 10.1111/j.1548-1425.2012.01396.x

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      Psychologists working in Russia's cities have found it both desirable and profitable to offer “psychological education” to the children of the elite. I examine two characterizations of this work—as a form of neoliberal subjectivation and as a post-Soviet project focused on progressive sociopolitical reform. Exploring the tensions between them illuminates the historical specificity of self-work in Russia, its relation to commerce and biopolitics, and its political ambiguity.

    6. News media and contention over “the local” in urban India (pages 819–834)

      SAHANA UDUPA

      Article first published online: 2 NOV 2012 | DOI: 10.1111/j.1548-1425.2012.01397.x

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      Exploring the highly competitive bilingual news field in urban India, I illustrate how localization of news content has led to conflictual discourses around who should constitute “the local” and for what end. Mediatized contests over “the local” frame urban politics along linguistic and cultural divides, articulated through populist challenges to neoliberal media discourses of “the global local.” In turning a critical eye to these mediatized contests, I extend the recent emphasis on the need to “ground” globalization studies and explore the concrete ways in which globalization imprints itself on local spaces.

  5. Book Reviews

    1. Top of page
    2. Elections and media
    3. Affect at the limits of the human
    4. Oil and corporate illusions
    5. Precarity, the sacred, and self-definition
    6. Book Reviews
    1. Cultivating Global Citizens: Population in the Rise of China by Susan Greenhalgh (pages 836–838)

      ARIANNE M. GAETANO

      Article first published online: 2 NOV 2012 | DOI: 10.1111/j.1548-1425.2012.01398_2.x

    2. Localizing the Internet: An Anthropological Account by John Postill (pages 838–839)

      JENNIFER COOL

      Article first published online: 2 NOV 2012 | DOI: 10.1111/j.1548-1425.2012.01398_3.x

    3. Performing Piety: Making Space Sacred with the Virgin of Guadalupe by Elaine A. Peña (pages 839–840)

      HILLARY KAELL

      Article first published online: 2 NOV 2012 | DOI: 10.1111/j.1548-1425.2012.01398_4.x

    4. Modern Migrations: Gujarati Indian Networks in New York and London by Maritsa Poros (pages 844–845)

      CANDICE LOWE SWIFT

      Article first published online: 2 NOV 2012 | DOI: 10.1111/j.1548-1425.2012.01398_8.x

    5. Laibon: An Anthropologist's Journey with Samburu Diviners in Kenya by Elliot Fratkin (pages 847–848)

      BRANDON D. LUNDY

      Article first published online: 2 NOV 2012 | DOI: 10.1111/j.1548-1425.2012.01398_10.x

    6. Performing the Divine: Mediums, Markets and Modernity in Urban Vietnam by Kirsten W. Endres (pages 848–849)

      LAUREN MEEKER

      Article first published online: 2 NOV 2012 | DOI: 10.1111/j.1548-1425.2012.01398_11.x

    7. So Much Wasted: Hunger, Performance, and the Morbidity of Resistance by Patrick Anderson (pages 852–854)

      ROBERT L. CANFIELD

      Article first published online: 2 NOV 2012 | DOI: 10.1111/j.1548-1425.2012.01398_15.x

    8. In Search of Paradise: Middle-Class Living in a Chinese Metropolis by Li Zhang (pages 854–855)

      VANESSA L. FONG

      Article first published online: 2 NOV 2012 | DOI: 10.1111/j.1548-1425.2012.01398_16.x

    9. In Good Company: An Anatomy of Corporate Social Responsibility by Dinah Rajak (pages 855–856)

      JESSICA SMITH ROLSTON

      Article first published online: 2 NOV 2012 | DOI: 10.1111/j.1548-1425.2012.01398_17.x

    10. The Anthropological Study of Class and Consciousness edited by E. Paul Durrenberger (pages 856–858)

      CAMERON B. WESSON

      Article first published online: 2 NOV 2012 | DOI: 10.1111/j.1548-1425.2012.01398_18.x

    11. Reigning the River: Urban Ecologies and Political Transformation in Kathmandu by Anne M. Rademacher (pages 862–863)

      SHUBHRA GURURANI

      Article first published online: 2 NOV 2012 | DOI: 10.1111/j.1548-1425.2012.01398_22.x

    12. Becoming Mapuche: Person and Ritual in Indigenous Chile by Magnus Course (pages 863–864)

      BRENT METZ

      Article first published online: 2 NOV 2012 | DOI: 10.1111/j.1548-1425.2012.01398_23.x

    13. From Modern Production to Imagined Primitive: The Social World of Coffee from Papua New Guinea by Paige West (pages 864–865)

      REBECCA MARI MEUNINCK

      Article first published online: 2 NOV 2012 | DOI: 10.1111/j.1548-1425.2012.01398_24.x

    14. Communitas: The Anthropology of Collective Joy by Edith Turner (pages 865–866)

      F. ALLAN HANSON

      Article first published online: 2 NOV 2012 | DOI: 10.1111/j.1548-1425.2012.01398_25.x

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