Writings

For some downloadable reprints, see my site at Academia.edu,

      

     I’m a cultural anthropologist. My studies in the last twenty+ years have focused on visible and audible aspects of culture, especially those embedded in contested narrative and institutional frames. I study arts and crafts in global art markets, museum narratives about the "primitive" and the "indigenous," the use of ethnic designs to brand and signify authenticity, the construction of spaces and places to tell stories, and such-like.

 

       Prior to focusing on the arts, I focused on politics, gender, and meaningful cultural aesthetic forms. I did year+-long fieldwork in the Duke of York Islands in Papua-New Guinea in 1968,  and 18 months of fieldwork in South Sulawesi,  Indonesia in the mid-70s. The two books about Indonesian matters, Meaning and Power in a Southeast Asia Realm (Princeton U Press, 1989), and Power and Difference, ed. Jane Atkinson and Shelly Errington (Stanford U. Press 1990).

 

       My current manuscript and recent articles consider what is happening to arts and artists from the Fourth World in the 21st century, along with the changing narratives in Anthropology, Art History, and museology that seek to understand them. This research can be considered a continuation of the issues laid out in the book I published at the end of the last century, The Death of Authentic Primitive Art and Other Tales of Progress (U.C. Press 1998).

 

       A recent very long article (technically a chapter) entitled "Entangled ASubjects and Art Objects" will appear in the Routledge Companion to Contemporary Anthropology, scheduled for publication in Spring 2016.

 

      

 

     Meaning and Power ... has been reissued in a trade paperback by Princeton U.Press

     Power and Difference is out of print, but can be obtained at Alibris.com (a site for used and remaindered  books)

     The Death of Authentic Primitive Art and Other Tales of Progress can be ordered from University of California Press or your local independent bookstore.

      "Entangled Subjects and Art Objects" will appear in Spring 2016 in a book by Routledge.

      A selection of articles can be downloaded from Academia.edu; or check JStor in your university library.

 

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