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Making History : Pukapukan and Anthropological Constructions of Knowledge - Robert Borofsky

Making History

Pukapukan and Anthropological Constructions of Knowledge

Paperback Published: 17th December 1990
ISBN: 9780521396486
Number Of Pages: 224

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The unravelling of an anthropological puzzle concerning a Polynesian island's social organization clarifies the strength and limitations of the anthropological approach to constructing knowledge.

Industry Reviews

'Robert Borofsky's Making History [is] one of the most original and thought-provoking ethnographies I have read in some time ... [it involces] parallel investigations of how ethnographer and native gather and validate knowledge, how they construct understandings of a culture's past and present, and how these understandings influence each other ... always provocative and incisive ... Making History offers a great deal to think about.' James Howe, Pacific Studies 'I recommend the book highly as a good anthropological read; the writing is lucid and stylish, and the contents rich and original.' Judith Huntsman, Man 'One of the finest [discussions] in the literature on the relationship between social context and the acquisition of knowledge ... It raises significant questions about the uses and meaning of the past both to Pukapukans and to ethnographers. There is much to learn from here.' Richard Price, Journal of American Folklore 'By locating ... problems [of knowing]substantively in Polynesian ethnography, the author adds an important chapter to arguments about ethnographic validity and authority.' Ivan Brady, American Anthropologist 'Borofsky breaks new ground in the study of sense-making ... and towards a comparative epistemology ... He has not only made an original contribution to the study of tradition as a continuously modified understanding, he has opened the door to a new room: the study of the development of ideas as situated in complex and interacting sociohistorical processes.' Roland Tharp, Anthropology & Education Quarterly 'Making History is a significant contribution to the growing dialogue and interpenetration of the disciplines and methodologies of anthropology and history ... [it] offers historians in particular much food for thought.' Caroline Ralston, Pacific Studies 'A very useful contribution to a discussion of some significant general problems as well as a mine of information on the development and recent state of Pukapukan society.' Sir Raymond Firth, Professor Emeritus, University of London

List of illustrationsp. ix
Forewordp. xi
Prefacep. xv
Acknowledgmentsp. xviii
Differing accounts of the pastp. 1
Pukapukap. 3
Pukapukan knowledge regarding the Akatawap. 6
The absence of Western knowledge regarding the Akatawap. 12
Pukapukan social organization: A perspective on anthropological ways of knowingp. 18
Modern Pukapukan social organizationp. 18
Traditional Pukapukan social organizationp. 40
Concluding commentsp. 72
Acquiring traditional knowledge: Pukapukan ways of knowing, Part Ip. 74
The learning processp. 78
Ridicule and the absence of praisep. 92
Learning from public displays of knowledgep. 100
The appearance of being knowledgeablep. 104
Validating traditional knowledge: Pukapukan ways of knowing, Part IIp. 106
Evaluating an account's validityp. 108
Pukapukan ways of knowingp. 120
Making historyp. 131
Reviving the past within the presentp. 131
Constructing traditions: Parallels and differencesp. 145
Anthropological ways of knowingp. 152
Regarding land disputesp. 157
Notesp. 158
Bibliographyp. 168
Indexp. 191
Table of Contents provided by Syndetics. All Rights Reserved.

ISBN: 9780521396486
ISBN-10: 0521396484
Audience: Professional
Format: Paperback
Language: English
Number Of Pages: 224
Published: 17th December 1990
Country of Publication: GB
Dimensions (cm): 22.61 x 15.24  x 1.52
Weight (kg): 0.36