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A Postal Inspector’s Exposé
Using El lazarillo de ciegos caminantes (the "Guide for Blind Rovers" by Alonso Carrio de Lavandera, the best known work of the era) as a jumping off point for a sprawling discussion of 18th-century Spanish America, Ruth Hill argues for a richer, more nuanced understanding of the relationship between Spain and its western colonies. Armed with primary sources including literature, maps, census data, letters, and diaries, Hill reveals a rich world of intrigue and artifice, where identity is surprisingly fluid and always in question. More importantly, Hill crafts a complex argument for reassessing our understanding of race and class distinctions at the time, with enormous implications for how we view conceptions of race and class today.
Women's Informal Work in Jamaica
Making a living in the Caribbean requires resourcefulness and even a willingness to circumvent the law. Women of color in Jamaica encounter bureaucratic mazes, neighborhood territoriality, and ingrained racial and cultural prejudices. For them, it requires nothing less than a herculean effort to realize their entrepreneurial dreams.
A Global Search for Consensus
Deeply touched by the tragedies of botched abortions that they witnessed as medical students and young physicians in Chile in the 1940s and later around the world, the authors have attempted in their professional lives and now in this book to establish a framework for dialogue to replace the polarization that exists today. Doctors Faúndes and Barzelatto use their decades of international work to document the personal experiences of different classes of women in different countries and those countries' policies and practices. No other book provides such a comprehensive and reasoned examination of the entire topic of abortion, from the medical to the religious and ethical and from the psychological to the legal, in plain language understandable by non-specialists. The central thesis is that there are too many induced abortions in the world today, that most are preventable and should be prevented--a middle ground that both pro-life and pro-choice advocates can accept. The first part of the book reviews why women have abortions, as well as the magnitude and consequences. The second part examines values. The third part discusses effective interventions. The final part states conclusions about what can be done to reach a necessary social consensus. The Portuguese edition of this book was issued at the very end of 2004. The Spanish edition, launched in mid-2005, is already in a second printing. The authors are making presentations at special events sponsored by universities, professional associations, and feminist networks in Argentina, Chile, Mexico, Peru, Uruguay, Colombia, the Dominican Republic, and the United States.
Bringing together contributions from top specialists in Hispanic studies - both Peninsular and Latin American - this volume explores a variety of critical issues related to the historical, political, and ideological configuration of the field. Dealing with Hispanism in both Latin America and the United States, the book’s multidisciplinary essays range from historical studies of the hegemonic status of Castillian language in Spain and America to the analysis of otherness and the uses of memory and oblivion in various nationalist discourses on both sides of the Atlantic. Wide-ranging though they are, these essays are linked by an understanding of Hispanism as a cultural construction that originates with the conquest of America and assumes different intellectual and political meanings in different periods, from the time of national cultural consolidation, to the era of modernization, to the more recent rise of globalization.
Indigenous Identity and Enduring Afflictions
Illness Is a Weapon presents an engaging portrayal of the everyday experience of disease in a remote Australian Aboriginal community. While chronic Aboriginal ill health has become an important national issue in Australia, Saethre breaks new ground by locating sickness within the daily lives of Indigenous people. Drawing on more than a decade of ethnographic research in the Northern Territory, Saethre explores the factors structuring ill health, the tactics individuals use to negotiate these realities, and the ways in which disease and medical narratives are employed to construct, manage, and challenge social relations. Reframing current debates, this book argues that disease and suffering have become powerful expressions of Indigenous identity. Through dialogues and interactions, Aboriginal and non-Aboriginal people engage in a reciprocal discussion about the past, present, and future of indigeneity.
Rarely is disease and suffering understood as a form of protest, and in Illness Is a Weapon, Saethre confronts the stark reality of the current contest between all parties in this struggle. As Saethre explains, "Cursing at nurses, refusing to take medication, and accepting acute illness as unremarkable is simultaneously an act of defiance and a rejection of vulnerability."
The Myth of Modernity and the Transatlantic Onset of Modernism
Modernismo (1880s–1920s) is considered one of the most groundbreaking literary movements in Hispanic history, as it transformed literature in Spanish to an extent not seen since the Renaissance. As Alejandro Mejías-López demonstrates, however, modernismo was also groundbreaking in another, more radical way: it was the first time a postcolonial literature took over the literary field of the former European metropolis. Expanding Bourdieu’s concepts of cultural field and symbolic capital beyond national boundaries, The Inverted Conquest shows how modernismo originated in Latin America and traveled to Spain, where it provoked a complete renovation of Spanish letters and contributed to a national identity crisis. In the process, described by Latin American writers as a reversal of colonial relations, modernismo wrested literary and cultural authority away from Spain, moving the cultural center of the Hispanic world to the Americas. Mejías-López further reveals how Spanish American modernistas confronted the racial supremacist claims and homogenizing force of an Anglo-American modernity that defined the Hispanic as un-modern. Constructing a new Hispanic genealogy, modernistas wrote Spain as the birthplace of modernity and themselves as the true bearers of the modern spirit, moved by the pursuit of knowledge, cosmopolitanism, and cultural miscegenation, rather than technology, consumption, and scientific theories of racial purity. Bound by the intrinsic limits of neocolonial and postcolonial theories, scholarship has been unwilling or unable to explore modernismo’s profound implications for our understanding of Western modernities.
Borges and Translation
It is well known that Jorge Luis Borges was a translator, but this has been considered a curious minor aspect of his literary achievement. Few have been aware of the number of texts he translated, the importance he attached to this activity, or the extent to which the translated works inform his own stories and poems. Between the age of ten, when he translated Oscar Wilde, and the end of his life, when he prepared a Spanish version of the Prose Edda , Borges transformed the work of Poe, Kafka, Hesse, Kipling, Melville, Gide, Faulkner, Whitman, Woolf, Chesterton, and many others. In a multitude of essays, lectures, and interviews Borges analyzed the versions of others and developed an engaging view about translation. He held that a translation can improve an original, that contradictory renderings of the same work can be equally valid, and that an original can be unfaithful to a translation. Borges's bold habits as translator and his views on translation had a decisive impact on his creative process. Translation is also a recurrent motif in Borges's stories. In "The Immortal," for example, a character who has lived for many centuries regains knowledge of poems he had authored, and almost forgotten, by way of modern translations. Many of Borges's fictions include actual or imagined translations, and some of his most important characters are translators. In "Pierre Menard, author of the Quixote," Borges's character is a respected Symbolist poet, but also a translator, and the narrator insists that Menard's masterpiece-his "invisible work"-adds unsuspected layers of meaning to Cervantes's Don Quixote . George Steiner cites this short story as "the most acute, most concentrated commentary anyone has offered on the business of translation." In an age where many discussions of translation revolve around the dichotomy faithful/unfaithful, this book will surprise and delight even Borges's closest readers and critics.
At a time when more nuanced understandings of Muslim countries and their legal and social practices are urgently needed in the West, the appearance of this collection is especially welcome. In these illuminating and accessible essays, the contributors explain how Islam sees itself in terms of social policy, how it treats women, and how it encourages charity, education, and general social welfare. The essays encompass many regional cultures and draw on court records and legal debates, field work on government ministries, and an extensive reading of Islamic law. In his overview of waqf (similar to the Western idea of a foundation, in which an endowment is set aside in perpetuity for specified purposes), Ahmad Dallal explains how charity, a central organizing principle in Islam, is itself organized and how waqf, traditionally a source of revenue for charitable purposes, can also become a source of tension and conflict. Donna Lee Bowen, in her essay on the position of women in Islamic law, points out the crucial differences between the Islamic principles of family equity and the Western notion of individual equality. In a subsequent essay, Bowen addresses the problems surrounding family planning and the dilemmas that have arisen within the Muslim world over differing ideas about birth control. The two final essays look at specific instances of how the modern state has treated Islamic social policy. Gail Richardson examines zakat, an Islamic tax used to assist the poor, and its administration in Pakistan. Carol Underwood, meanwhile, explores public health policy in Iran, both before and after the Islamic revolution that deposed the Shah. Addressing some of the most profound misunderstandings between Islamic and Western societies, ISLAM AND SOCIAL POLICY will be of vital interest not only to scholars and policymakers but to anyone concerned with Islam’s critical place in the modern world.
Culture and HIV in the Trobriands
The Trobriand Islands of Papua New Guinea have been depicted as a place of sexual freedom ever since these small atolls in the southwest Pacific were made famous by anthropologist Bronislaw Malinowski in the early twentieth century. Today in the era of the HIV/AIDS pandemic, how do Trobrianders respond to public health interventions that link their cultural practices to the risk of HIV? How do they weigh HIV prevention messages of abstinence, fidelity, and condom use against traditional sexual practices that strengthen interclan relationships in a gift economy?
Written by an anthropologist who has direct ties to the Trobriands through marriage and who has been involved in Papua New Guinea's national response to the HIV epidemic since the mid-1990s, Islands of Love, Islands of Risk is an unusual insider ethnography. Katherine Lepani describes in vivid detail the cultural practices of regeneration, from the traditional dance called Wosimwaya to the elaborate exchanges that are part of the mortuary feasts called sagali. Focusing on the sexual freedom of young people, the author reveals the social value of sexual practice. By bringing cultural context and lived experience to the fore, the book addresses the failure of standardized public health programs to bridge the persistent gap between HIV awareness and prevention. The book offers insights on the interplay between global and local understandings of gender, sexuality, and disease and suggests the possibility of viewing sexuality in terms other than risk.
Islands of Love, Islands of Risk illustrates the contribution of ethnographic research methodology in facilitating dialogue between different ways of knowing. As a contemporary perspective on Malinowski's classic accounts of Trobriand sexuality, the book reaffirms the Trobriands' central place in the study of anthropology.
This book is the recipient of the annual Norman L. and Roselea J. Goldberg Prize for the best project in the area of medicine.