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Contemporary Futures : Perspectives from Social Anthropology - Sandra Wallman

Contemporary Futures

Perspectives from Social Anthropology

By: Sandra Wallman (Editor)

Paperback

Published: 26th November 1992
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In industrial societies visualising the future is a serious business. Our assumptions about it govern the management of resources at every level - domestic, national and global - and we project them onto other non-industrial societies whose visions are necessarily different. The contributors to this volume, all social anthropologists, provide a comparative cross-cultural perspective of the idea of the future. They write of the range of futures visualised inour own and other cultures, and discuss its implications for the future of anthropology itself. The main focus is not on prediction as such, but on the causes and consequences of images of the future held in specific contexts of time and place. The contributiors interpret the way we (and others) picture the future, and then seek to understand the effects of our (and their) picturing it in the way we (and they) do. These essays dem onstrate that images of the future may affect what actually happens in the future, and more importantly, that images of the future can constrain the present at least as much as do images of the past. They show how beliefs in the future underpin the sense of self and its survival, and how changes in those beliefs may radically alter the way indivduals relate to each other, to the natural environment, and to culture itself. Because the idea of the future is a topic hitherto neglected by social anthropologists, this collection directs new and original light on the interpretation of other cultures. It will be of great interest to students and teachers of anthropology, sociology and cultural studies, and to others intrigued by the philosophical basis of ordinary life.

Preface
Introduction: Contemporary Futures
Perspectives on Industrial Society
The Death of the Future David Lowenthal
Trapped in the Present: the past, present and future of a group of old people in East London. Guro Huby
Posterity and Paradox: some uses of time capsules Brian Durrans
On Predicting the Future: parish rituals and patronage in Malta Jeremy Boessevain
Perspectives on Non-Industrial Society
Lines, Cycles, and Transformations: temporal perspectives on Inuit action
Going There and Getting There: the future as a legitimating charter for life in the present
Time past, Time Present, Time Future: contrasting temporal values in two southeast Asian societies Signe Howell
Saving the Rain Forest? contested futures in conservation Paul Richards Part Three: Perspectives on the Future of Anthropology
Sustainable Anthropology: ecology and anthropology in the future
Reproducing Anthropology Marilyn Strathern
The Marabar Caves, 1920-2020 Robert Paine
A Future for Social Anthropology?
Raymond Firth Index
Notes on contributors
Table of Contents provided by Publisher. All Rights Reserved.

ISBN: 9780415066631
ISBN-10: 0415066638
Series: ASA Monographs
Audience: Tertiary; University or College
Format: Paperback
Language: English
Number Of Pages: 256
Published: 26th November 1992
Publisher: Taylor & Francis Ltd
Country of Publication: GB
Dimensions (cm): 23.5 x 15.9  x 1.3
Weight (kg): 0.34
Edition Number: 1