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Title The Ethnography of reading / edited by Jonathan Boyarin.

Imprint Berkeley : University of California Press, c1993.


Location Call No. OPAC Message Status
 Axe 3rd Floor Stacks  028.9 Et38 1993    ---  Available
Description vi, 285 p. : ill. ; 24 cm.
Bibliography Includes bibliographical references and index.
Contents Placing reading : ancient Israel and medieval Europe / Daniel Boyarin -- Gracious words : Luke's Jesus and the reading of sacred poetry at the beginning of the Christian era / Susan Noakes -- The cultural construction of reading in Anglo-Saxon England / Nicholas Howe -- Keep listening : ethnography and reading / Johannes Fabian -- The presence of the name : reading scripture in an Indonesian village / James N. Baker -- Literacy, orality, and ritual practice in highland Colombia / Diana Digges and Joanne Rappaport -- Japanese spirit and Chinese learning : scribes and storytellers in pre-modern Japan / H. Mack Horton -- Textual interpretation as collective action / Elizabeth Long -- Voices around the text : the ethnography of reading at Mesivta Tifereth Jerusalem / Jonathan Boyarin -- Keeping slug woman alive : the challenge of reading in a reservation classroom / Greg Sarris.
Summary Writing, the subject of much innovative scholarship in recent years, is only one half of what we call literacy. The other half, reading, now finally receives its due in these ground-breaking essays by a distinguished group of anthropologists and literary scholars. The authors challenge the still-prevalent notion that societies "progress" along a universal sequence from orality, or preliteracy, to literacy. Central to their discussions is the fact that orality and textuality, far from being opposite ends of a continuum, interact in complex, multidirectional ways. The reading situations described here range from Anglo-Saxon England to contemporary Indonesia, and from ancient Israel to the Kashaya Pomo Indian reservation. Some essays investigate what reading is in exotically cross-cultural contexts, while others demonstrate that in certain Western contexts reading is still very much a social activity. Some analyze the long historical transition from reading as a collective, oral practice in the West to the private, silent one it is regarded as today. Filled with insights that erase the line between orality and textuality, the essays all add dimensions to the simple rubric of "literacy," once understood as an evolutionary advancement in the generalization, abstraction, and reliable transmission of otherwise evanescent and changeable oral communications. The authors also bring refreshing new views to that commonplace of Western thought, that reading is a private act focused on the printed text. And if reading, like writing, is much more socially embedded than our received wisdom dictates, cannot the ethnography of reading enhance our understanding of interpretation, individuality, dialogue, and domination? This collection offers new perspectives for readers in anthropology, literature, history, and philosophy, as well as in religious, gender, and cultural studies.
Subject Books and reading.
Literature and society.
Books and reading. (OCoLC)fst00836454
Literacy. (OCoLC)fst00999859
Literature and society. (OCoLC)fst01000096
Indexed Term Reading
Added Author Boyarin, Jonathan.
ISBN 0520081331 (alk. paper)
9780520081338 (alk. paper)
0520079558 (cloth : alk. paper)
9780520079557 (cloth : alk. paper)

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