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Beyond Nature and Culture
Author: Philippe Descola

ISBN: 9780226212364
Format: Paperback
Number Of Pages: 488
Published: 7 September 2014
Country of Publication: US
Dimensions (cm): 22.9 x 15.2 x 2.7
Description:
Successor to Claude Levi-Strausa at the College de France, Philippe Descola has become one of the most important anthropologists working today, and Beyond Nature and Culture has been a major influence in European intellectual life since its publication in 2005. Here, finally, it is brought to English-language readers. At its heart is a question central to both anthropology and philosophy: what is the relationship between nature and culture? Culture - as a collective human making, of art, language, and so forth - is often seen as essentially different than nature, which is portrayed as a collective of the nonhuman world, of plants, animals, geology, and natural forces. Descola shows this essential difference to be, however, not only a specifically Western notion, but also a very recent one. Drawing on ethnographic examples from around the world and theoretical understandings from cognitive science, structural analysis, and phenomenology, he formulates a sophisticated new framework, the "four ontologies" - animism, totemism, naturalism, and analogism - to account for all the ways we relate ourselves to nature. By thinking beyond nature and culture as a sim...

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