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By Winnie Lem, Belinda Leach

Confronts significant questions dealing with anthropology, Marxist idea, cultural reviews, feminism, and historical past.

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Additional resources for Culture, Economy, Power: Anthropology As Critique, Anthropology As Praxis (S U N Y Series in Anthropological Studies of Contemporary Issues)

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I simply want to draw attention to the fact that it is another form of simplistic reductionism to suggest that, for example, the constitutions of states can be read as expressions of some national essence or imaginary. Indeed, it is arguable that the threats to national unity in Canada are at least partly a product of the fact that the Canadian constitution does not reflect the real Canadian imaginary, whatever it might be. Howes argues that the “bicentric propensity, this refusal to synthesize, is a manifestation of the strength of the Canadian constitution” (1992, 164).

William Roseberry (1988) in his influential paper on political economy comments that her work “is an ethnography of the commons, one that enriches our understanding of historical instances of open field agriculture elsewhere in Europe” (1988, 175). However, Roseberry also comments that continuity is stressed, but the differentiating effects of, for example, the move towards hiring herders in the late 19th century are not emphasized. Had some of the processes of change within a continuous system of open field agriculture Political Economy in Spanish Anthropology 41 been more fully integrated into her account, the extraordinarily rapid changes that came with enclosure might have seemed less abrupt.

Then, the experience of a particular political context and the anthropological practice that emerges within it forms a meaningful ground of contact between local anthropologists and anthropologists doing fieldwork in Spain. Another point of contact is the wider arena of anthropological knowledge where the presence or absence of communication between Anglophone and non-Anglophone anthropologists has scientific and political implications for the discipline as a whole. I would first like to present the relations between the development of political economy in anthropology and the political context in Spain during the last forty years.

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