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Biographical Objects : How Things Tell the Stories of Peoples' Lives - Janet Hoskins

Biographical Objects

How Things Tell the Stories of Peoples' Lives

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In this innovative study, six women and men from Eastern Indonesia narrate their own lives by talking about their possessions--domestic objects used to construct a coherent identity through a process of identification and "self-historicizing." Janet Hoskins explores how things are given biographical significance and entangled in sexual politics, expressed in dualistic metaphors where the familiar distinctions between person and object and female and male are drawn in unfamiliar ways.
"Biographical Objects" is an ethnography of persons which takes the form of a study of things, showing how the object is not only a metaphor for the self but a pivot for reflexivity and introspection, a tool for autobiographic elaboration, a way of knowing oneself through things.

[T]he book's heart really lies in the vicissitudes of personal experience, and the ethnographer's relationships with certain individuals. In this respect, the book properly takes its place among other recent works that center on the particularities of experience. Here the author's long fieldwork in Kodi serves her well.

Introductionp. 1
The Betel Bag: A Sack for Souls and Storiesp. 25
Domesticating Animals and Wives: Women's Fables of Protestp. 59
The Royal Snake Shroud: Local Weaving and Colonial Kingshipp. 83
Spindles and Spinsters: The Loss of Romantic Lovep. 115
The Drum and Masculinity: A Healer's Storyp. 137
Green Bottles and Green Death: Modernity and the Ephemeralp. 161
Conclusions: Stories and Objects in Lived Dualitiesp. 183
Referencesp. 199
Indexp. 211
Table of Contents provided by Blackwell. All Rights Reserved.

ISBN: 9780415920124
ISBN-10: 0415920124
Audience: Tertiary; University or College
For Ages: 18 years old
Format: Paperback
Language: English
Number Of Pages: 224
Published: 1st June 1998
Country of Publication: GB
Dimensions (cm): 22.86 x 15.29  x 1.4
Weight (kg): 0.31
Edition Number: 1