Departing from an essentialist concept of the self, this highly original volume advances the cross-cultural study of selfhood with three contributions to the literature: First, it approaches the self as an ideological process, arguing that selfhood is culturally situated and emergent in social practices of persuasion. Second, it demonstrates how postmodernity problematizes the experience and concept of the self. Finally, the book challenges the pervasive practice of equating an individuated self with the Western world and a relational self with the non-Western world. Contributions cover a broad range of topics—from the development of the eccentric self to the ritual circumcision of Jewish males.
George E. Marcus
Debbora Battaglia, Associate Professor of Anthropology, Mount Holyoke College, is the author of On the Bones of the Serpent: Person, Memory and Mortality in Sabarl Island Society (1990).
"An exceptionally stimulating work. . . . Likely to become a classic."—Donald Brenneis, Pitzer College