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Biblical Interpretation and African Traditional Religion

Cross-Cultural and Community Readings in Owamboland, Namibia

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Helen C. John

In Biblical Interpretation and African Traditional Religion, Helen C. John juxtaposes grassroots biblical interpretations from Owambo, Namibia, with professional interpretations of selected New Testament texts, effectively demonstrating the capacity of grassroots interpretations to destabilise, challenge and nuance dominant professional interpretations. John uses a cross-cultural and dialogical approach – ‘Cross-Cultural Biblical Interpretation Groups’ – to explore the relationship between African Traditional Religion (ATR), Christianity and biblical interpretation in Owamboland, Namibia. She contextualises the grassroots Owambo interpretations using fieldwork experiences and ethnographic literature, thus heightening the cross-cultural encounter. In particular, John reflects on Western epistemologies and the Eurocentric interpretative trends that are brought into relief by the African interpretations gathered in Owamboland.
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Edited by Pål Repstad

As the title suggests, Political Religion, Everyday Religion: Sociological Trends reflects upon two important trends that have recently emerged in the sociology of religion. Firstly, there is an increasing interest in the interplay between religion and politics. Religion has moved from being almost ignored by sociologists to being acknowledged – some would even say overrated – as an important political factor. Secondly, ordinary people’s everyday religion has likewise become an important topic for many researchers. In this book, James Beckford, Inger Furseth and other prominent scholars present critical discussions and empirical studies of both political and everyday religion, and the editor, Pål Repstad, shows how these two trends should enter into a closer dialogue. The book is essential for both students and experienced researchers in the sociology of religion.
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Sufism East and West

Mystical Islam and Cross-Cultural Exchange in the Modern World

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Edited by Jamal Malik and Saeed Zarrabi-Zadeh

In Sufism East and West, the contributors investigate the redirection and dynamics of Sufism in the modern era, specifically from the perspective of global cross-cultural exchange. Edited by Jamal Malik and Saeed Zarrabi-Zadeh, the book explores the role of mystical Islam in the complex interchange and fluidity in the resonance spaces of “East” and “West.”
The volume challenges the enduring Orientalist binary coding of East-versus-West and argues instead for a more mutual process of cultural plaiting and shared tradition. By highlighting amendments, adaptations and expansions of Sufi semantics during the last centuries, it also questions the persistent perception of Sufism in its post-classical epoch as a corrupt imitation of the legacy of the great Sufis of the past.
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Michelle Obeid

Border Lives offers an in-depth account of how people in Arsal, a northeastern town on the border of Lebanon with Syria, experienced postwar sociality, and how they grappled with living in the margins of the Lebanese state in the period following the 1975-1990 war.

In a rich ethnography of ‘changing times,’ Michelle Obeid shows how restrictions in cross-border mobility, transformations in physical and social spaces, burgeoning new industries and shifting political alliances produced divergent ideologies about domesticity and the family, morality and personhood.

Attending to metaphors of modernity in a rural border context, Border Lives broadens the sites in which modernity and social change can be investigated.
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Both Muslim and European

Diasporic and Migrant Identities of Bosniaks

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Edited by Dževada Šuško

The edited volume Both Muslim and European: Diasporic and Migrant Identities of Bosniaks scrutinizes some of the new aspects of the Bosniak history and identity and connects them with the experience of migration and diaspora formation. Adopting an interdisciplinary approach, to volume tackles a variety of important questions and issues such as: the impact of migration waves on the Bosniak identity; dealing with the experience of war, genocide and forced displacement; the dual cultural code of being “in-between the two worlds”; the role of religion, language and culture in everyday life; looking at translocal and transnational networks and practices. In addition to discussing the contemporary issues in Bosnia and Herzegovina, several chapters deal with the Bosnian migrant realities in countries such as Germany, Switzerland, Slovenia, Australia, Turkey and the United States of America.
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James Scambary

In Conflict, Identity, and State Formation in East Timor 2000-2017, James Scambary analyses the complex interplay between local and national level conflict and politics in the independence period. Communal conflict, often enacted by a variety of informal groups such as gangs and martial arts groups, has been a constant feature of East Timor’s post-independence landscape. A focus on statebuilding, however, in academic discourse has largely overlooked this conflict, and the informal networks that drive Timorese politics and society. Drawing on over a decade of fieldwork, Scambary documents the range of different cultural and historical dynamics and identities that drive conflict, and by which local conflicts and non-state actors became linked to national conflict, and laid the foundations of a clientelist state.
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Sociability Associations

A Literature Review

Robert A Stebbins

Friendly social relations during free time, referred to here as leisure-based sociability, constitute a prominent reward of participation in groups based on voluntary membership, consisting for this review mainly of amateurs, hobbyists, volunteers, and their associations. This benefit is analyzed according to two subtypes: sociable nonprofit associations and social clubs. The goal of this issue of the Voluntaristics Review is to examine the leisure component of these two subtypes as framed in the serious leisure perspective (SLP), put nonprofit sociability in organizational context, and then review the empirical literature bearing on it. Excluded are the studies and theoretic treatises approaching nonprofit groups from another angle (e.g., organizational structure, management issues, funding sources, governmental regulation, type of employment). Specifically, this review centers on the relevant publications listed in the SLP website bearing on amateurs, hobbyists, and career volunteers (the serious pursuits), casual leisure, and project-based interests. It includes several extensions of the theory and research on leisure-related aspects of aging and retirement, arts and science administration, library and information science, positive psychology, therapeutic recreation and disability studies, and tourism and event analysis. Compared with the specialties in leisure studies, the SLP casts by far the broadest theoretical and empirical net in that interdisciplinary field. The research reviewed shows that such talk—generically known as socializing—reflects one or more of 14 themes. In general, members find sociability in these clubs and associations in and around the core activities they pursue there and on which the two subtypes have formed. The studies reviewed, taken together, provide considerable validation of the proposition that leisure-based sociability is a prominent reward of participating in a multitude of volunteer groups. Leisure-based sociability is essentially micro-analytic, but when viewed through the lens of the SLP, it can be further understood using meso and macro levels of analysis.
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Laura Caso Barrera

In Chilam Balam of Ixil Laura Caso Barrera translates for the first time a Yucatec Maya document that resulted from the meticulous reading by the Colonial Maya of various European texts such as the Bible and the Poem of the Mío Cid, as well as various studies on astronomy, astrology, calendars, and medicine.

The Maya, showing considerable astuteness and insight, appropriated this knowledge. With this study and facsimile, experts can further their knowledge of Mayan calendars or traditional medicine; and Mayan enthusiasts can discover more about the culture’s world view and history.



En el Chilam Balam de Ixil Laura Caso Barrera traduce por primera vez un documento en maya yucateco, que resultó de la minuciosa lectura que realizaron los mayas coloniales de distintos textos europeos como la Biblia o el Cantar del Mío Cid, así como de diversos estudios de astronomía, astrología, calendarios y medicina.

Con astucia y perspicacia, los mayas hicieron propio ese saber. Con esta edición, los expertos podrán ahondar en las anotaciones calendáricas o la medicina tradicional maya; y los amantes de esta cultura conocerán otros aspectos de su pensamiento e historia.

Open Access

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Edited by Niklas Bernsand and Barbara Törnquist-Plewa

In Cultural and Political Imaginaries in Putin’s Russia scholars scrutinise developments in official symbolical, cultural and social policies as well as the contradictory trajectories of important cultural, social and intellectual trends in Russian society after the year 2000. Engaging experts on Russia from several academic fields, the book offers case studies on the vicissitudes of cultural policies, political ideologies and imperial visions, on memory politics on the grassroot as well as official levels, and on the links between political and national imaginaries and popular culture in fields as diverse as fashion design and pro-natalist advertising. Contributors are Niklas Bernsand, Lena Jonson, Ekaterina Kalinina, Natalija Majsova, Olga Malinova, Alena Minchenia, Elena Morenkova-Perrier, Elena Rakhimova-Sommers, Andrei Rogatchevski, Tomas Sniegon, Igor Torbakov, Barbara Törnquist-Plewa, and Yuliya Yurchuk.
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Kimberly Dark

The Daddies is a love letter to masculinity, a kaleidoscope of its pleasures and horrors. The question “Who’s your Daddy?” started showing up in mainstream cultural references during the 1990s. Those words can be spoken as a question, or a challenge, as a flirtation, a joke, or a threat. It’s all about inflection, intention, and who’s asking. Apparently, we have so much shared cultural meaning about “Daddy” the speakers and listeners can simply intuit meaning and proceed to laugh at the joke, or experience the shame, as appropriate. But who is Daddy in American culture? The Daddies aims to find out more than who – but how the process of knowing Daddy can prompt readers to know themselves and their society. This allegory about patriarchy unfolds as a kinky lesbian Daddy/girl love story. Daddy-ness is situated in all people, after all, and we each share responsibility for creating a fairer world. The Daddies can be used as a springboard for discussion in courses in sociology, gender and women's studies, cultural studies, sexuality studies and communication. As a work of fiction, The Daddies can also be enjoyed by general audiences.