Below are readings by class session and a bibliography of supplementary readings.

Readings by Class Session

1 Introduction  
2 Culture, Sign and Symbol  
3 Discuss Illness as Metaphor Sontag, Susan. Illness as Metaphor. New York: Doubleday, 1990.
4 Metaphor and Other Tropes

Cohn. “Sex and Death in the Rational World of Defense Intellectuals.” Signs 2, no. 4 (1987): 687-718.

Gregor, Thomas. “Far, Far Away My Shadow Wandered…” American Ethnologist 9 (1981): 709-720.

Ohnuki-Tierney, Emiko. “Structure, Event, and Historical Metaphor: Rice and Identities in Japanese History.” J. of Royal Anthro. Inst. 1, no. 2 (1995): 227-248.

5 More Tropes Foong Khong, Yuen. Analogies at War: Korea, Munich, Dien Bien Phu and the Vietnam Decisions of 1965. Princeton: Princeton University Press, 1992, pp. 174-190. (Excerpts)
6 Interpreting Metaphor  
7 Metaphorical Imperialism

Lakoff, George, and Mark Johnson. Metaphors We Live by. Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1980, pp. 3-32. (Excerpts)

Ohnuki-Tierney, Emiko. “Monkey as Metaphor?” Man 25, no. 1 (1990): 89-104.

8 Animals

Douglas, Mary. “The Abominations of Leviticus.” In Purity and Danger. New York: Routledge, 1966, pp. 41-57.

Ritvo, Harriet. “Cave Canem.” In The Animal Estate: The English and Other Creatures in the Victorian Age. Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press, 1987, pp. 167-202.

9 Animals and Classification Tambiah, S. J. “Animals Are Good to Think and Good to Prohibit.” In Culture, Thought, and Social Action. Cambrdge, MA: Harvard University Press, 1985, pp. 169-211.
10 Roosters and Interpretation

Geertz, Clifford. “Deep Play: Notes on the Balinese Cockfight.” In Myth, Symbol, and Culture. Edited by Clifford Geertz. Norton, 1971, pp. 1-29.

Dundes, Alan. “Gallus as Phallus.” In The Cockfight, A Casebook. Edited by Alan Dundes.  Madison, WI: University of Wisconsin Press, 1994, pp. 241-275.

11 The Human Body

Turner, Terence. “Tchikrin: A Central Brazilian Tribe and its Symbolic Language of Bodily Adornment.” Natural History (Oct. 1969): 50, 52, 57-59 and 70.

Firth, Raymond. “Hair as Private Asset and Public Symbol.” In Symbols. Ithaca, NY: Cornell University Press, 1973, pp. 262-298.

Hertz, Robert. “The Pre-eminence of the Right Hand.” In Death and The Right Hand. Aberdeen: Cohen & West, 1960 [1909], pp. 89-113.

12 More Bodies

Martin, Emily. “Science and Women’s Bodies.” In Body/Politics: Women and the Discourses of Science. Edited by Mary Jacobus et al. New York: Routledge, 1990, pp. 69-79.

Gilman, Sander. “The Jewish Foot.” In The Jew’s Body. New York: Routledge, 1991, pp. 38-59.

Gusterson, Hugh. “Nuclear War, the Gulf War, and the Disappearing Body.” J. of Urban and Cultural Studies 2, no. 1 (1991): 45-52.

Foucault, Michel. “The Body of the Condemned/ Docile Bodies.” Excerpts from Discipline and Punish, in 1984, The Foucault Reader. Edited by Paul Rabinow. New York, Pantheon, 1984, pp. 170-187.

13 Classification and Cosmology

Durkheim, Emile, and M. Mauss. Primitive Classification. Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1966, pp. 3-26 and 42-66. (Excerpts)

Fox, James. “On Binary Categories and Primary Symbols.” In The Interpretation of Symbolism. Edited by Roy Willis. New York: Wiley, 1975, pp. 99-132.

14 Ritual

Turner, Victor. “Betwixt and Between: The Liminal Phase in Rites de Passage.” In The Forest of Symbols. Ithaca, NY: Cornell University Press, 1967, pp. 93-110.

Gusterson, Hugh. “Nuclear Weapons Testing — Scientific Experiment as Political Ritual.” In Naked Science: Anthropological Inquiries into Boundaries, Power, and Knowledge. New York: Routledge, 1996, pp. 131-146.

Goffman, Erving. Asylums. New York: Doubleday, 1961, pp. 4-35.

15 Passage and Persuasion none
16 Ritual and Power

Cohn, Bernard. “Representing Authority in Victorian India.” In The Invention of Tradition. Edited by Eric Hobsbawm, and Terence Ranger. New York: Cambridge University Press, 1992, pp. 165-209.

Howe, James. “Fox Hunting as Ritual.” American Ethnologist 8, no. 2 (1981): 278-297.

17 Magic and Ritual Curing

Turner, Victor. “An Ndembu Doctor in Practice.” In The Forest of Symbols. Ithaca, NY: Cornell University Press, 1967, pp. 359-393.

Holloman, Regina. “Ritual Opening and Individual Transformation: Rites of Passage at Esalen.” American Anthropologist 76, no. 2 (1974): 265-278.

18 Narrative and Life

Bruner, Jerome. “The Legal and the Literary.” In Making Stories: Law, Literature, and Life. Cambrdge, MA: Harvard University Press, 2002, pp. 37-62.

Mattingly, Cheryl. Healing Dramas and Clinical Plots: The Narrative Structure if Experience. New York: Cambridge University Press, 1998, pp. 72-103. (Excerpts)

19 Narrative and Control

Howe, James, and Joel Sherzer. “Friend Hairyfish and Friend Rattlesnake.” Man 21 (1986): 680-696.

Ewick, Patricia, and Susan Silbey. “Subversive Stories and Hegemonic Tales: Toward a Sociology of Narrative.” Law and Society Review 29, no. 2: 197-226.

20 Folktale and Form

Propp, Vladimir. Morphology of the Folktale. Austin, TX: University of Texas Press, 1968, pp. 19-37 and 96-99.

Colby, Benjamin. “A Partial Grammar of Eskimo Folktales.” American Anthropologist 75 (1973): 645-660.

21 Little Red Riding Hood and the Freudian Wolf

Bettelheim, Bruno. The Uses of Enchantment: The Meaning and Importance of Fairy Tales. New York: Vintage, 1975, pp. 3-19 and 166-183.

Dundes, Alan. “Interpreting Little Red Riding Hood Psychoanalytically.” In The Brothers Grimm and Folktale. Edited by James M. McGlathery. Urbana: University of Illinois Press, 1988.

22 Goldilocks Meets Oedipus

Leach, Edmund. “The Structure of Myth.” In Claude Lévi-Strauss.

Hammel, Eugene. “The Myth of Structural Analysis: Lévi-Strauss and the 3 Bears.” In Modules in Anthropology 25, Reading, MA: Addison-Wesley, 1972.

23 Hyenas and Demon Brides

Beidelman, Thomas. “Hyena and Rabbit.” Africa 31, no. 1 (1961): 61-74.

Hymes, Dell. “The Wife who Goes out Like a Man.” In In Vain I Tried to Tell You: Essays in Native American Ethnopoetics . Philadelphia: University of Pennsylvania Press, 1981, pp. 274-299.

24 Jaguars, Vampires, and Starlets Howe, James, and Lawrence Hirschfeld. “The Star-Girls’ Descent: A Myth about Men, Women, Matrilocality, and Singing.” J. of Am. Folklore 94, no. 373 (1981): 292-322.
25 Movies on Myth none
26 Wrap up none

Supplementary Readings

Bell, Catherine. Ritual: Perspectives and Dimensions. New York: Oxford University Press, 1997.

Douglas, Mary. Natural Symbols. New York: Vintage Books, 1973.

Fernandez, James, ed. Beyond Metaphor: The Theory of Tropes in Anthropology. Stanford: Stanford University Press, 1991.

Gibbs, Raymond. The Poetics of Mind: Figurative Thought, Language, and Understanding. New York: Cambridge University Press, 1994.

Humphrey, Caroline, and James Laidlaw. The Archetypal Actions of Ritual. New York: Oxford University Press, 1994.

Kertzer, David. Ritual, Politics, and Power. New Haven: Yale University Press, 1988.

Lévi-Strauss, Claude. The Raw and the Cooked. New York: Harper & Row, 1969.

———. The Savage Mind. London: Weidenfeld & Nicolson, 1966.

Maybury-Lewis, David, and Uri Almagor, eds. The Attraction of Opposites: Society and Thought in a Dualistic Mode. Ann Arbor: University of Michigan Press, 1989.

Needham, Rodney, ed. Right and Left: Essays on Dual Symbolic Classification. Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1973.

Ortony, Andrew, ed. Metaphor and Thought. New York: Cambridge University Press, 1979.

Polkinghorne, Donald. Narrative Knowing and the Human Sciences. Albany: Status University of New York Press, 1988.

Rappaport, Roy. Ritual and Religion in the Making of Humanity. New York: Cambridge University Press, 1999.

Sapir, J. David, and J. Christopher Crocker. The Social Use of Metaphor. Philadelphia: University of Pennsylvania Press, 1977.

Tambiah, S. J. Culture, Thought, and Social Action. Cambridge: Harvard University Press, 1985.

Turner, Victor. Dramas, Fields, and Metaphors. Ithaca, NY: Cornell University Press, 1974.

———. The Ritual process: Structure and Anti-Structure. Ithaca, NY: Cornell University Press, 1969.

Hendy, Andrew Von. The Modern Construction of Myth. Bloomington: Indiana University Press, 2002.

Willis, Roy, ed. Signifying Animals: Human Meaning in the Natural World. New York: Routledge, 1990.

Course Info

Learning Resource Types

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