Nominalism and Essentialism in Urban Anthropology



AS A REACTION to the essentialist perspectives of mid-century anthropology, proponents of postmodernism and others have viewed the conventional categories, such as cultures, communities, and ethnic groups as reifications. The critique of Wirthian urbanism which preceded the current period fits this pattern. The paper will deal with how postmodernist anthropologists have dealt with the urban and how, despite the critique, an essentialist view of urbanism retains utility, [urbanism, postmodernism, essentialism]