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Landscape has long had a submerged presence within anthropology, both as a framing device which informs the way the anthropologist brings his or her study into 'view', and as the meaning imputed by local people to their cultural and physical surroundings. A principal aim of this volume follows from these interconnected ways of considering landscape: the conventional, Western notion of 'landscape' may be used as productive point of departure from which to explore analgous ideas; local ideas can in turn reflexively by used to interrogate the Western construct.
The Introduction argues that landscape should be conceptualized as a cultural process: a process located between place and space, inside and outside, image and representation. In the chapters that follow, nine noted anthropologists and an art historian exemplify this approach, drawing on a diverse set of case studies. These range from an analysis of Indian calendar art to an account of Israeli nature tourism, and from the creation of a metropolitan "gaze" in nineteenth-century Paris to the soundscapes particular to the Papua New Guinea rainforests. The anthropological perspectives developed here are of cross-disciplinary relevance; geographers, art historians, and archaeologists will be no less interested than anthropologists in this re-envisaging of the notion of landscape.
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Eric Hirsch is at Brunel University. Michael O'Hanlon is at British Museum.Review:
"A provocative and engaging dialogue for interdisciplinary studies in space and place, from beginning students through professionals in anthropology, geography, art history, and cultural studies."--Choice
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