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Pathways of Memory and Power: Ethnography and History among an Andean People

Abercrombie, Thomas A.

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     Pathways of Memory and Power crosses the disciplinary boundary where anthropology and history meet, exploring the cultural frontier of the colonial and postcolonial Andes. Thomas A. Abercrombie uses his fieldwork in the Aymara community of Santa Barbara de Culta, Bolivia, as a starting point for his ambitious examination of the relations between European forms of historical consciousness and indigenous Andean ways of understanding the past. Writing in an inviting first-person narrative style, Abercrombie confronts the ethics of fieldwork by comparing ethnographic experience to the power-laden contexts that produce historical sources.
    Making clear the early and deep intermingling of practices and world views among Spaniards and Andeans, Christians and non-Christians, Abercrombie critiques both the romanticist tendency to regard Andean culture as still separate from and resistant to European influences, and the melodramatic view that all indigenous practices have been obliterated by colonial and national elites. He challenges prejudices that, from colonial days to the present, have seen Andean historical knowledge only in mythic narratives or narratives of personal experience. Bringing an ethnographer’s approach to historiography, he shows how complex Andean rituals that hybridize European and indigenous traditions—such as libation dedications and llama sacrifices held on saints’ day festivals—are in fact potent evidence of social memory in the community.

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Thomas A. Abercrombie is associate professor of anthropology at New York University.

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Abercrombie, Thomas A. Author
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Book Description University of Wisconsin Press, United States, 1998. Paperback. Book Condition: New. New.. 229 x 152 mm. Language: English Brand New Book. Pathways of Memory and Power crosses the disciplinary boundary where anthropology and history meet, exploring the cultural frontier of the colonial and postcolonial Andes. Thomas A. Abercrombie uses his fieldwork in the Aymara community of Santa Barbara de Culta, Bolivia, as a starting point for his ambitious examination of the relations between European forms of historical consciousness and indigenous Andean ways of understanding the past. Writing in an inviting first-person narrative style, Abercrombie confronts the ethics of fieldwork by comparing ethnographic experience to the power-laden contexts that produce historical sources.Making clear the early and deep intermingling of practices and world views among Spaniards and Andeans, Christians and non-Christians, Abercrombie critiques both the romanticist tendency to regard Andean culture as still separate from and resistant to European influences, and the melodramatic view that all indigenous practices have been obliterated by colonial and national elites. He challenges prejudices that, from colonial days to the present, have seen Andean historical knowledge only in mythic narratives or narratives of personal experience. Bringing an ethnographer s approach to historiography, he shows how complex Andean rituals that hybridize European and indigenous traditions such as libation dedications and llama sacrifices held on saints day festivals are in fact potent evidence of social memory in the community. Bookseller Inventory # AAN9780299153144

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Book Description University of Wisconsin Press, United States, 1998. Paperback. Book Condition: New. New.. 229 x 152 mm. Language: English Brand New Book. This work examines the relationship between European and indigenous Andean ways of understanding the past. Following field work in Bolivia, the author argues that complex Andean rituals have hybridized European and indigenous traditions and are evidence of a keen social memory in the community. Bookseller Inventory # AAN9780299153144

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Book Description University of Wisconsin Press, 1997. Paperback. Book Condition: NEW. 9780299153144 Paperback, This listing is a new book, a title currently in-print which we order directly and immediately from the publisher. Bookseller Inventory # 716627

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Book Description Univ of Wisconsin Pr, 1998. Paperback. Book Condition: Brand New. 1st edition. 632 pages. 9.50x6.25x1.50 inches. In Stock. Bookseller Inventory # __0299153142

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