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Social Sciences
Sacred Nature Cover
Format: Hardback
Pages: 336
ISBN: 9781789259179
Pub Date: 15 Nov 2022
Imprint: Oxbow Books
Series: Material Religion in Antiquity
Sacred Nature: Animism and Materiality in Ancient Religions is the second volume of the series Material Religion in Antiquity (MaReA). The book collects the proceedings of the international online workshop carrying the same title organized by CAMNES, SoRS on 20–21 May 2021. Sacred Nature brings together the perspectives of scholars from different disciplines (archaeology, anthropology, iconography, philology, history of religions) about the notions of nature, sacredness, animism and materiality in ancient religions of the Old and the New World. The contributions highlight various ways of understandings the relationships that occurred between human beings, animals, plants, rivers, deities and the land in the religious life of ancient societies. In particular, each chapter explores entangled aspects of the perception of nature and its other-than-human inhabitants, and contributes to readdress some notions about nature, personhood/agency, divinity/sacrality, and materiality/spirituality in ancient religions and cosmologies. In this line, the book seeks to promote a starkly inter-disciplinary and religious-anthropological approach to the definition of ‘sacred nature’, especially engaging with the analytical category of animism as a fruitful conceptual tool for the investigation of human-environmental relations in the ancient religious conceptions, representations and practices. Dialoguing with animism and drawing upon the question on how an ancient religion happened materially, the volume presents key case studies that explore how nature and its non-human inhabitants were understood, represented, engaged with and interwoven in the sacred and sensuous landscapes of ancients.
Decolonizing American Spanish Cover
Format: Hardback
Pages: 284
ISBN: 9780822947264
Pub Date: 08 Nov 2022
Imprint: University of Pittsburgh Press
Series: Pitt Illuminations
Despite a pronounced shift away from Eurocentrism in Spanish and Hispanic studies departments in US universities, many implicit and explicit vestiges of coloniality remain firmly in place. While certain national and linguistic expressions are privileged, others are silenced with predictable racial and gendered results. Decolonizing American Spanish challenges not only the hegemony of Spain and its colonial pedagogies, but also the characterization of Spanish as a foreign language in the United States. By foregrounding Latin American cultures and local varieties of Spanish and reconceptualizing the foreign as domestic, Jeffrey Herlihy-Mera works to create new conceptual maps, revise inherited ones, and institutionalize marginalized and silenced voices and their stories. Considering the University of Puerto Rico as a point of context, this book brings attention to how translingual solidarity and education, a commitment to social transformation, and the engagement of student voices in their own languages can reinvent colonized education.
How to Explain Radicalization? Cover
Format: Paperback
Pages: 200
ISBN: 9788869774041
Pub Date: 01 Nov 2022
Imprint: Mimesis International
Series: Sociological Challenges
This book is based on findings from the Horizon2020 Project “Participation. Analysing and Preventing Extremism via Participation” (Grant Agreement 962547) funded by the European Commission. Its main goal is to provide an updated, well-informed and nuanced picture of the contemporary research into the factors influencing pathways of radicalization towards violent extremism in the European landscape. Different kinds of extremism are taken into consideration (far-right, far-left, separatist and religious extremism) through a mixed approach that combined a qualitative study with textual-statistical analyses. One of the most relevant outcomes of our research on current radicalization studies is that, for all types of extremisms analyzed, the process of radicalization is understood as an event that occurs at the intersection between a personal trajectory and a permissive, or enabling, environment. Cumulative extremism dynamics and new places of radicalization are also noted as further trends to be monitored.
Playing With Apartheid Cover
Format: Paperback
Pages: 300
ISBN: 9781922669018
Pub Date: 01 Nov 2022
Imprint: Australian Scholarly Publishing
In no country were contests over racism in sport more bitterly fought, more protracted or important than in Australia. In the wake of the Sharpeville massacre in South Africa in 1960, sport became a fault-line in international campaigns against racism. Struggles over racism penetrated every aspect of sporting interaction between Australia and South Africa.   Playing With Apartheid explores the role of Australian sport in the long campaign to end white minority rule in South Africa. International controversy over apartheid-sport also exposed racism in the very fabric of sport in Australia.
Whisky Cask Investment Cover
Format: Hardback
Pages: 104
ISBN: 9781912667901
Pub Date: 31 Oct 2022
Imprint: Spink Books
Enter the wonderful world of whisky casks to learn about a unique investment opportunity.   We are in the grip of the greatest period of uncertainty since the 2008 financial crash. Volatility is rocking global financial markets, and inflation is back with a vengeance. Investors are seeking capital preservation and stable returns. Whisky casks can provide both.   Two unique attributes make whisky casks different from the other safe-haven assets. Whisky casks automatically appreciate in value as time passes because the spirit within them becomes more precious as it matures – and you can curate your own whisky cask to maximise your returns. Add to that supply constraints, deep heritage and a booming market that has been unaffected by Covid-19 and geopolitical tensions, and you have an uncorrelated investment that can offer stable annual returns of 10-12% and a hedge against rising inflation. This book tells you everything you need to know to start investing in whisky casks. It uncovers the history of whisky cask investment and explains how to choose and curate your cask, highlighting the factors to consider when creating a portfolio of casks.   With cask prices starting at around £1,500, whisky cask investment is open to almost everyone. It provides an enjoyable way to diversify your investment portfolio in uncertain times with the promise of outstanding returns. Unlock the door to a new investment that could revolutionise your personal finances – with a few tasty drams along the way.
Seduced by Radium Cover
Format: Hardback
Pages: 308
ISBN: 9780822947066
Pub Date: 25 Oct 2022
Imprint: University of Pittsburgh Press
The discovery of radium by Marie and Pierre Curie in 1898 eventually led to a craze for radium products in the 1920s until their widespread use proved lethal for consumers, patients, and medical practitioners alike. Radium infiltrated American culture, Maria Rentetzi reveals, not only because of its potential to treat cancer but because it was transformed from a scientific object into a familiar, desirable commodity. She explores how Standard Chemical Company in Canonsburg, Pennsylvania - the first successful commercial producer of radium in the United States - aggressively promoted the benefits of radium therapy and its curative properties as part of a lucrative business strategy. Over-the-counter products, from fertilizers to paints and cosmetics to tonics and suppositories, inspired the same level of trust in consumers as a revolutionary pharmaceutical. The radium industry in the United States marketed commodities like Liquid Sunshine and Elixir of Youth at a time when using this new chemical element in the laboratory, in the hospital, in private clinics, and in commercial settings remained largely free of regulation. Rentetzi shows us how marketing campaigns targeted individually to men and women affected not only how they consumed these products of science but also how that science was understood and how it contributed to the formation of ideas about gender. Seduced by Radium ultimately reveals how innovative advertising techniques and seductive, state-of-the-art packaging made radium a routine part of American life, shaping scientific knowledge about it and the identities of those who consumed it.
From House Societies to States Cover
Format: Hardback
Pages: 312
ISBN: 9781789258622
Pub Date: 15 Oct 2022
Imprint: Oxbow Books
Series: Multidisciplinary Approaches to Ancient Societies (MAtAS)
The organisation and characteristics of early and ancient states have become the focus of a renewed interest from archaeologists, ancient historians and anthropologists in recent years. On the one hand, neo-evolutionary schemas of political transformation find it difficult to define some of their most basic concepts, such as ‘chiefdom’, ‘complex chiefdom’ and ‘state’, not to mention the transition between them. On the other hand, teleological interpretations based on linear dynamics, from less to increasingly more complex political structures, in successive steps, impose biased and too rigid views on the available evidence. In fact, recent research stresses the existence of other forms of socio-political organisation, less vertically integrated and more heterarchical, that proved highly successful and resilient in the long term in tying together social groups. What is more, such forms quite often represented the basic blocks on which states were built and that managed to survive once states collapsed. Finally, nomadic, maritime and mountain populations provide fascinating examples of societies that experienced alternative forms of political organisation, sometimes on a seasonal basis. In other cases, their consideration as ‘marginal’ populations that cultivated specialised skills ensured them a certain degree of autonomy when living either within or at the borders of states.   This book explores such small-scale socio-political organisations, their potential and the historical trajectories they stimulated. A selection of historical case studies from different regions of the world may help rethink current concepts and views about the emergence and organisation of political complexity and the mechanisms that prevented, occasionally, the emergence of solid polities. They may also cast some light over trajectories of historical transformation, still poorly understood as are the limits of effective state power. This book explores the importance of comparative research and long-term historical perspectives to avoid simplistic interpretations, based on the characteristics of modern Western states abusively used retrospectively.
Technocratic Visions Cover
Format: Hardback
Pages: 302
ISBN: 9780822947486
Pub Date: 04 Oct 2022
Imprint: University of Pittsburgh Press
Technocratic Visions examines the context and societal consequences of technologies, technocratic governance, and development in Mexico, home of the first professional engineering school in the Americas. Contributors focus on the influential role of engineers, especially civil engineers, but also mining engineers, military engineers, architects, and other infrastructural and mechanical technicians. During the mid-nineteenth century, a period of immense upheaval and change domestically and globally, troubled governments attempted to expand and modernize Mexico’s engineering programs while resisting foreign invasion and adapting new Western technologies to existing precolonial and colonial foundations. The Mexican Revolution in 1910 greatly expanded technocratic practices as state agents attempted to control popular unrest and unify disparate communities via science, education, and infrastructure. Within this backdrop of political unrest, Technocratic Visions describes engineering sites as places both praised and protested, where personal, local, national, and global interests combined into new forms of societal creation; and as places that became centers of contests over representation, health, identity, and power. With an eye on contextualizing current problems stemming from Mexico’s historical development, this volume reveals how these transformations were uniquely Mexican and thoroughly global.
A-Democracy Cover
Format: Paperback
Pages: 150
ISBN: 9788869773358
Pub Date: 03 Oct 2022
Imprint: Mimesis International
Series: Politics
This volume examines the rise and apparent fall of 'neo-liberalism', whose historical roots and theoretical implications are explored throughout. This begins with today's current climate, dominated by a range of political mediatic populisms that run across the contemporary political scene, and a critical comparison with the seminal analysis of  Ernesto Laclau. The volume also analyzes the failure of the multicultural paradigm in terms of the Lockean concept of tolerance in light of the theses developed by the political theorist Wendy Brown concerning the civil and social dynamics of de-democratization. From this point of view, an original concept of post-hegemony is proposed, which - attempting to go beyond Antonio Gramsci and his modern followers - focuses on the subject of desire and enjoyment within a Freudian and Lacanian framework, a subject whose drives are incompatible with the systemic grid of contemporary hyper-capitalism. Finally, following a provocative analysis of violence and terrorism in the globalized world, the volume proposes - on the basis of Judith Butler's  analysis - a paradigm of a "democracy of bodies" as an alternative to and salvation from the decline of the "political" in the present era.
Digital Citizenship Cover
Format: Paperback
Pages: 200
ISBN: 9788869774027
Pub Date: 03 Oct 2022
Imprint: Mimesis International
Series: Politics
The Western idea of democracy, based on human opinions and the counting of votes, has become obsolete. The exclusively human form of democracy is being substituted by a new kind of contract which, through digital architecture, the internet of things and sensors, extends participation to all of the different entities that make up our habitat. Parliaments, citizen assemblies, parties and all kinds of the political architecture of interaction, inspired by the model of the polis, are giving way to platforms, blockchains and different network environments. In this interactive ecosystem, humans, data, viruses, the climate, sensors, biodiversity and informatic territories have begun to express collaborative policies and solutions through a dialogue with data. Today, the Western idea of society, founded on a contract between citizens and limited to the cohabitation of human subjects (just as the idea of citizenship is based on the fundamental rights of people) faced with the challenges of the pandemic, of climate change and those posed by the latest generation of intelligent networks, turns out to be inadequate. The digital citizenship of today is the research area in which to search for the overcoming of the Western political project and to begin a new culture of governance within complex networks characterized by interactions within an architecture that is no longer composed either of subjects nor objects.
Disruption of Habits During the Pandemic Cover
Format: Paperback
Pages: 200
ISBN: 9788869773297
Pub Date: 03 Oct 2022
Imprint: Mimesis International
Series: Philosophy
In the year 2020, everything we used to think about our habits has been profoundly disrupted. Lockdown still represents an unprecedented experience for all those who went through it, radically affecting our freedom of movement and all those social interactions that used to make up our daily lives. Some people believe that once the pandemic ends, nothing will be the same. Others believe that once the virus becomes weaker or a vaccine is at our disposal and the fear is diminished, everything will go back to normal because the mechanism of habit is in many ways similar to the mechanisms of nature, reiterating the uniformity of its functioning. Which is correct? Both positions, perhaps. When philosophers addressed the issue of customs, namely collective habits, they have generally emphasized that caution us required when it comes to changing them - and indeed, if we look back at history… Could pandemics affect shared habits in specific territories, habits that were ultimately generated in reaction to other natural risks and threats?
Seniors, foreign caregivers, families, institutions Cover
Format: Paperback
Pages: 250
ISBN: 9788869773716
Pub Date: 03 Oct 2022
Imprint: Mimesis International
Series: Sociology
The studies included in this edited volume explore discourses surrounding the ageing population, those who assist them, their families and the institutions/organisations that offer services to them. Qualitative and quantitative theoretical inputs from a variety of research domains – (socio)linguistics, anthropology, philosophy, cultural studies, cognitive science, as well as statistics and information technology – are employed to survey an array of themes that pay close attention to the linguistic, social, economic and ethical aspects regarding seniors. Different registers and genres are examined, which are produced by diverse diatopic distributions, diaphasic/diastratic variations and diamesic dimensions of the language.   All this underlines the importance of integrating various strands of analysis and multidisciplinary perspectives to attend to the complexity of a changing discourse and complex issue which are being looked at closely by the international scientific community. The book is suitable for a wide readership, including scholars and neophyte readers with an interest in discourse and cultural studies, sociolinguistics, and pragmatics.
Bad Cities Cover
Format: Paperback
Pages: 292
ISBN: 9788869772818
Pub Date: 28 Sep 2022
Imprint: Mimesis International
From Larry Kramer's New York to Roth's Newark and Colla's Baghdad, this collection of 15 essays explores how American contemporary literature tackles the issue of urban violence, its relationship with the forerunners of the genre, and how its main features evolved over time.  
Central Asia Cover
Format: Hardback
Pages: 788
ISBN: 9780822946786
Pub Date: 28 Sep 2022
Imprint: University of Pittsburgh Press
Series: Central Eurasia in Context
Central Asia is a diverse and complex region of the world often characterized in the West as being difficult to access. Central Asia: Contexts for Understanding offers the most comprehensive introduction to the region available. Combining thematic chapters with case studies, readers will learn to appreciate the interconnected aspects of life in Central Asia. These wide-ranging, easy-to-understand contributions from some of the leading scholars in the field provide the context needed to understand Central Asia and presents a launching-off point for further research.
Ladies of Honor and Merit Cover
Format: Hardback
Pages: 244
ISBN: 9780822947165
Pub Date: 28 Sep 2022
Imprint: University of Pittsburgh Press
In the late eighteenth century, enlightened politicians and upper-class women in Spain debated the right of women to join one of the country’s most prominent scientific institutions: the Madrid Economic Society of Friends of the Country. Societies such as these, as Elena Serrano describes in her book, were founded on the idea that laypeople could contribute to the advancement of their country by providing “useful knowledge,” and their fellows often referred to themselves as improvers, or friends of the country. After intense debates, the duchess of Benavente, along with nine distinguished ladies, claimed, won, and exercised the right of women to participate in shaping the future of their nation by inaugurating the Junta de Damas de Honor y Mérito, or the Committee of Ladies of Honor and Merit. Ten years later, the Junta established a network of over sixty correspondents extending from Tenerife to Asturias and Austria to Cuba.   With this book, Serrano tells the unknown story of how the duchess and her peers - who succeeded in creating the only known female branch among some five hundred patriotic societies in the eighteenth century - shaped Spanish scientific culture. Her study reveals how the Junta, by stressing the value of their feminine nature in their efforts to reform education, rural economy, and the poor, produced and circulated useful knowledge and ultimately crystallized the European improvement movement in Spain within an otherwise all-male context.
Psychic Investigators Cover
Format: Hardback
Pages: 236
ISBN: 9780822947073
Pub Date: 28 Sep 2022
Imprint: University of Pittsburgh Press
Series: Science and Culture in the Nineteenth Century
Psychic Investigators examines British anthropology’s engagement with the modern spiritualist movement during the late Victorian era. Efram Sera-Shriar argues that debates over the existence of ghosts and psychical powers were at the center of anthropological discussions on human beliefs. He focuses on the importance of establishing credible witnesses of spirit and psychic phenomena in the writings of anthropologists such as Alfred Russel Wallace, Edward Burnett Tylor, Andrew Lang, and Edward Clodd.   The book draws on major themes, such as the historical relationship between science and religion, the history of scientific observation, and the emergence of the subfield of anthropology of religion in the second half of the nineteenth century. For secularists such as Tylor and Clodd, spiritualism posed a major obstacle in establishing the legitimacy of the theory of animism: a core theoretical principle of anthropology founded in the belief of "primitive cultures" that spirits animated the world, and that this belief represented the foundation of all religious paradigms. What becomes clear through this nuanced examination of Victorian anthropology is that arguments involving spirits or psychic forces usually revolved around issues of evidence, or lack of it, rather than faith or beliefs or disbeliefs.