By Renato Rosaldo
Exposing the inadequacies of previous conceptions of static cultures and indifferent observers, the ebook argues as an alternative for social technological know-how to recognize and have fun range, narrative, emotion, and subjectivity.
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Additional info for Culture & truth: the remaking of social analysis : with a new introduction
By now many agree on the need for both, the prime time of mainstreaming and the safe house of separateness. Mainstreaming plays a critical role because of the scope and prestige of prime time. To articulate divergent perspectives and to inspire coming generations, diversity must be present in institutional authority. How otherwise can diverse groups articulate their intellectual visions to greatest effect? How otherwise can diverse groups become full citizens of the Republic of X (supply the name of your college or university)?
Temporally, they have middles and endings. Historically, they appear to repeat identical structures by seemingly doing things today as they were done yesterday. Their qualities of fixed definition liberate such events from the untidiness of everyday life so that they can be "read" like articles, books, or, as we now say, texts. Guided by their emphasis on self-contained entities, ethnographies written in accord with classic norms consider death under the rubric of ritual rather than bereavement.
Benevolent intentions do not erase damaging effects. Much as the former exclusive inhabitants of the old boys' room can, in the long run, remake relations between men and women in fuller more egalitarian ways, so too can Anglos and people of color as well as straights and gays remake their relations. The remaking of social analysis called for in Culture and Truth was inspired at its heart by such struggles to remake institutions and the social relations of their members. Diversity in classrooms does more than arouse predictable discomfort and resistance.