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Bryce Peake Exam Day 1 Historical Anthropology QUESTION 1) Historical anthropology claims to provide a corrective to the static model

l of culture and inattentiveness to colonial structures that plagues traditional cultural anthropology. Despite this unifying focus, however, the field is diverse in its approaches and understandings of fundamental terms: culture, history, actor, and event. In this question, map the varying ways in which these terms are used amongst historical anthropologists. How do various subfields interact and/or critique one anothers use of these terms? What crucial methodological distinction arise from their varying use of terminology? QUESTION 2) One of the classic debates in Marxist historical anthropology has been that between Michael Taussig and Sidney Mintz & Eric Wolf. Central to this debate are the definitions and centralizing of differing Marxist terminology(s): commodity fetishism, species being, materialist conception of history, historical materialism (Engels term), mode of production, and primitive accumulation. First, describe and analyze this debate within the context of Marxist historical anthropology and FeministMarxist historiography. Then, describe how the other sections of historical anthropology you wrote about in the previous question have addressed critiqued or embraced this Marxist terminology. 1- Mapping historical anthropology Nicholas Dirks traces the origins of historical anthropology through two branches: the Culture and Personality School of the United States figures such as Mead and Benedict and their development of knowledge that historicized other cultures for the purpose of developing military intelligence; and in the debate between Evans-Pritchard and Spendler (?) regarding the static nature of the eternal ethnographic present. Evans-Pritchard that anthropology had to become historical or become nothing, issuing a call to move beyond the static model of culture provided by Durkheim-inspired structural functionalism. Spendler, on the other hand, stated that structural functionalism had long been historical, particularly after the turn away from Malinowski that had occurred in then-contemporary (1960s) British social anthropology. The debate regarding the role of history, as both discipline and approach, has since haunted the corridors of anthropology. Levi-Strauss remarked that history is fine for anthropologists, so long as they come out of it to say something real about culture. And in his debate with Sartre regarding the a priori nature of the dialectical method, and the definition of time and events as solely cultural categories, Levi-Strauss crafted a space that seemed utterly ahistorical for anthropologist. In this essay, however, I show the ways in which US-based historical anthropologists have moved beyond the static structures of Levi-Straussian anthropology. I begin by describing the Annales, Microastoria, and postmodern historiographical foundations on which the field is defined. I then map out the field of historical anthropology in four primary blocks: Historical Structuralism, Subaltern Historiography, Practice Theoretical, and Marxist Historicism I save this final category for the next question regarding Marx. I first layout the genealogies of these areas, describe the central works, and finally discuss some of the limitations therein.

Bryce Peake Exam Day 1 Foundations Three schools of historical thought provide much of the historiographical and theoretical orientation for historical anthropology: the French Annales School, the Italian Microastoria, and Postmodern Historiography as it has evolved in the United States. The Annales School paradigm exists in three generations. The first generation, established and described by Bloch, was to move beyond history that focused solely on war, great men, and politics, as well as push against the material determinism of Marxist historians. His was a call for a total history that interwove politics and economics within the fabric of culture, to show the ways in which mens consciousness systematically overcame materialist causality according to everyday history. Febvre, in turn, gave rise to the historical focus of this first generation, often called mentalites. Febvre was specifically interested in religion in the 16th century, and the increased interpretations of atheism among the French. He took Rabelais, the French writer, as an epistemic individual of that time, analyzing his letters, to show the ways in which atheism was impossible, prevented by a particular cultural barrier a mentalites. Following Febvre, this generation of historians would focus on eliciting historical cultures of peoples from documents, to reconstruct their worlds as an ethnographer would do with present people If the first generation saw total history as folding of economics and politics into culture, the second generation Fernand Braudel would subsume all of these under the importance of the environment. Braudel argued that history moved at three levels: environmental - the longue duree, environmental level in which time moved in epochs; the structural civilization and economic systems; and the eventual war, economic crashes, plagues, and the like. Braudel argued that the latter two were limited by the first. Studying the Mediterranean, he argues that the homogeneity of the Mediterranean is due to the ways that the environment limits the impact of external vectors. While defined by the spaces bordering the sea, the sea exerted pressure on what types of cultural and economic forms would survive. Braudel ties the rise and fall of bureaucrats and capitalists as short term, with relatively little effect on The Mediterranean itself. A third generation of Annales School historians grew out of the work of Braudel and the return to mentalites. Out of Braudel developed a world historical quantitative historiography that calculated the statistical relations between individual lives such as property ownership and operationalized version of global historical events. More important to anthropology, however, the third generation of mentalites scholars borrowed from anthropologists Geertz and Turner in particular to examine the historical ways of being in the world. Alain Corbin, for example, would study the ways in which listening shifted under the transformation of village bells to secular apparatuses a transition that endured through the proliferation of bells, the destruction of bells and their melting into canons, the introduction of clock towers that were parasitically tied to the church bells, and finally, their use in profane events. Listening was transformed by the cultural nature of politics and the political nature of culture. The second foundation for historical anthropology is the Italian Microastoria approach developed by Carlos Ginzburg. In The Cheese and the Worms, Ginzburg examines the intersections of state logics of exclusion and the cultural encoding of inequality. Minocchio crafts an ecclesiastical mythic system, and is charged with heresy for his beliefs - particularly that the individual in the world is born like a worm in cheese. Ginzburg argues that had this

Bryce Peake Exam Day 1 been the 19th century, Ginzburg would have been institutionalized as insane revealing the impression of Foucault in his work. Instead, Minocchio is pursued by the state as a heretic. Analyzing the documents of the trial, Ginzburg argues that we can reconstruct Minnochios worldview within the context of 16th century miller culture, at the same time that we can examine the role of religion in the state as a system of control. In doing so, Ginzburg argues that he is pushing against the Annales School mentalites approach. The Annales School, he claims, examines the persistence of outmoded structures of feeling throughout historical time such as in Blochs analysis of the Kings healing touch and the rise and fall of monarchies while his approach is to examine the ways in which structures of feeling are made and remade at the sites of new sociopolitical oppositions. Further, unlike the Annales school, microastoria attempts a cultural history of the popular; Annales approaches, such as Febvres, assume that Rabelais as a bourgeois writer was the epistemic individual of the time, failing to account for the oppositions in peasant and wealthy. By examining the peasant, Ginzburg argues, we can see those oppositions and un-flatten society to reveal the circuits of power therein. Ginzburg is also methodologically important, as his Clues, myths, and Historical Method provided an outline for a new approach to historical methods. In The Inquisitor as Anthropologist, Ginzburg argues that Italian witch trial documents cannot so much be used to construct the systems of beliefs held by so-called witches who may or may not exist where they can be read as reflective of the dispositions of the state and its agents regarding religion. The archivist, in short, can interrogate documents as an ethnographer would individuals and I maintain the imperial framing here on purpose. The final historical foundation is that of postmodernism. While postmodernism did in fact enter history as a discipline, its effect was limited (where in literary theory, the postmodernization of history had an incredible effect). It drove the discipline of history to reinterrogate its positivism, the nature of the historical fact, and the narratives it told. The latter category is the subject of Hayden Whites Metahistory. White, from the perspective of disciplinary history, argues that the narratives we use to construct history have the potential to add to and/or obscure the empirical historical knowledge that lies below them. White states that we must considerate of three dimensions of historical thought: emplotment- our sense of time; argument the events, non-events, periods selected; and ideology what is the writers and the written-abouts conception of the political significance of history and time. Particular ways of telling history are drawn together in this system: romantic history typically focuses on a formalist argument with anarchic tendencies. Similarly paying attention to history as constructed, Lynn Hunts volume New Cultural History argues that because historical topics are discursive givens ala Foucault, our questions should not be what history is here, but what do histories do? Hunt describes a tension between literary postmodernisms death of the author, and the historical necessity of the author in historical studies pointing to the ways in which postmodernism ala Foucault only enters piecemeal, and suspiciously. Hunts approach and the turn to Foucault are both crucial as I will describe in the section that follows. Historical Structuralism/Structural History Levi-Strauss argued that time is itself a cultural category, and while Levi-Strauss structuralism freezes this time, Marshall Sahlins drew from the work of Maurice Bloch to mobilize this sentiment against political economic approaches to history. Sahlins argued that

Bryce Peake Exam Day 1 political economy assumed that capitalism entered cultures and had a unilateral effect; when, in reality, the introduction of the West and its economically structured relationships were always encoded in and interpreted through cultural categories and events. Historical Metaphors and Mythical Realities documents this historical motion in the mythology of Captain Cook. Instead of appearing as a god because he came from Europe, had pale skin, or had guns, Sahlins argues that Cook is mythologized as a god because he was at the right place, at the right time, coming from the right direction. Cook arrives at the time of the Festival of Lono, in which the God Lono came to relieve the authoritarian King his position to allow commoners time to celebrate and reproduce. Coincidentally, Cooks arrives at this time, further completing the myth by surveying the islands by sailing around them counter-clockwise in the way Lono would circumnavigate the island. Finally, Cooks godliness, and his consumption by the King, was not because of the powers inherent in Cook himself, but because Cook was Lono Cook was not a god, Lono was a god and Cook was Lono. Where Historical metaphors provides a great depth of historical research, Islands of History does most of the heavy theoretical lifting. Sahlins suggests that terminology structure of conjuncture to describe the ways in which two systems of time and disposition interact with one another. But Sahlins argues using the event of the Kings canoe running over natives as they lie face down in his glory having not gotten out of the waythat culture will always reproduce itself. In many ways, as the Comaroffs work suggests, Sahlins is much more interested in the eternal reproduction of structure not necessarily the conjuncture. For this reason, Sahlins theoretical apparatus relies on the event- and cannot account for the quotidian. It is only when challenged can Sahlins perspective be deployed to understand the historical persistence of cultural logic. And, history is only definable by those moments/events that occur in meaningful moments history is materialist, not temporal. And, although it would appear that Sahlins creates a hypervaluation of the actor, his theory vacates historical change from actors history is the business of structures, and while actors vis--vis practice effect these structures, they do so from an overdetermined position within the structure it is from this concept that, arguably, early practice theoretical historical anthropology arises. From Sahlins emphasis on time as culturally encoded experience come three scholars: Richard Parmentier, Johannes Fabian, and Thomas Trautman. Parmentiers work moves semiotic analysis in anthropology out of language use to culture in general, to analyze signs of history and signs in history. The first refers to the ways in which history is constructed through signs- index, icon, symbol and narrated accordingly. The second refers to signs that are themselves the bearers of history, material culture that is itself iconic to (not descriptive of) history. Parmentier argues that Belaun cities are constructed through signs of history to reflect the chiefly hierarchies making space a diagrammatic icon while this narrative and the hierarchy rely on signs in history for legitimacy. This structure is reproduced at ideological level of the tales of chiefly houses: how (hi)stories are told are themselves iconic of spaces, through which history is given meaning. Parmentier, in this project, is arguing for an ethnography of modalities of history and/or historical consciousness: how are time and event signified across the cultural productions of Belaun speakers? Addressing the cultural construction of time and history, only focusing on the ethnographer, Johannes Fabian, blending Sahlins structuralism and Whites concern with metanarrative, argues that anthropologists have crafted narratives in which the ethnographic other is other place and other time. There are three concepts of time in anthropology: physical- geological/geographic time in which the

Bryce Peake Exam Day 1 ethnographized is timeless like the artifact below the stratigraphy of dirt; measured- either mundane ( measured time in epochs) or typological (measured by the quality of surrounding events); and, the least used, intersubjective time that accounts for existence in the same moment with different time beliefs. Sahlins, Fabian suggests, comes close in examining the conjunction of capitalist and Hawaiian time, yet also fails to consider his own temporal position in this relationship. This is made clear by systematic tendencies in ethnographic narratives to explain time as back then and far away, while the ethnographic voice of theory pretends it exists in the present. Trautman moves further with this description, arguing that ethnological time be understood as the product of two time-systems: biblical and geological. The first, stemming from the Mosaic tree he discusses in his book The Dravidian Proof uses secular terms (Indo-European Language) to describe what are Biblical relations (Tribe of Jacob). This time sense is most clear in Columbus taking a Hebrew scholar to the Americas to find out if those people were indeed decedents of Jacob. In this time mode, and persisting today, is the idea that simpler peoples are the fallen of a more complex society there were no hunters and gatherers in the bible. Geological time, on the other hand, as long form and prehistoric, views natives in ways similar to stratigraphic layers: these savage people were, like stone below dirt, the hidden remnants of a time long past. The second lineage of thought was that of early practice theoretical work. Jean Comaroffs Body of Power examined the ways in which structures of oppression persisted in Apartheid, despite cultural appropriations of symbology. Tshidi appropriated the symbology of Apartheid in way that transformed the Zionist Christian Church into a patternwork of celebratory African Modernity. By robbing symbols, Tshidi individual challenged to totality of dominant culture. Yet, simultaneously, Apartheid was not resisted anywhere other than a symbolic level, as material resistance was too strong here she connects with figures like James Scott. The Second practical theoretical derivative concerned with the persistence of culture was that of Sherry Ortner. High Religion examines the rise of celibate Sherpa monasteries in Burma, crediting their rise to the necessity to resolve the inherent contradiction between trade-oriented kinship and egalitarian ethos of Buddhism. In order to be sacred, spaces cannot reproduce the quotidian profane logic of the normal, but rather must be practiced as spaces of resolve: by being celibate, the monastery was not held accountable to the birth order hierarchy inheritance rules, yet maintained its egalitarian ethic. Members of the monastery were not engaged in the practice of inheritance. Thus, the rise of celibate monasteries was a product of the dialectic between cultural logic and logics beyond practice- practice and structure. This field is limited in its perspective by the ways that culture is defined in opposition of structure, all the while functioning like a structure. And, as Obeyesekere would comment on Sahlins work, from a subaltern perspective, this approach fails to take into account the production of documents as not a production of facts, but a production of power/knowledge. Obeyesekere, arguing that as a Sri Lankan he understands the ways in which Western history erases the native subjective, suggests that Sahlins uncritical reporting of documents fails to account for the power that was already embedded in the documentary moment. History according to white British men, Obeyesekere would suggest as the subtitle to Sahlins work. And, this problem arises, Obeyesekere goes on to suggest, from the different nature of historical research: where ethnographers are used to private records that they themselves construct, history mobilizes public records constructed by other individuals with other agendas. Responding to this, Sahlins deposited his entire collection of notes in the University of Chicago institutional repository and then wrote three more books on why Obeyesekere was wrong 5

Bryce Peake Exam Day 1 from a historical factual and theoretical perspective. The decade long debate underscores what was a massive schism between structural history and Subaltern approaches. Subaltern School The Subaltern school is primarily concerned with the power of textual documents within a cultural framework. Their focus is often on the production of historical knowledge from the archive, arguing that the archive is itself a technology for colonialism not simply its document warehouse. This argument is made through both the postmodern historiography of the United States, and elements of textual interrogation from the Microastoria School. Subaltern approaches to historical anthropology are subsumed under two primary figures: Edward Said and Ranajit Guha. Saids Orientalism examines the ways in which the east is made out of citations how knowledge shapes reality and the ways that discourses become historical phenomenon (not vice versa as Foucault argued). Later, in the 1990s, Guha would argue that history is always produced from the perspective of the colonized elite in order to construct a particular type of social reality that naturalizes this elites role. The telling of the rise of the Indian state, he argues, is not necessarily a real shift: there was a move from a coercive state held by the British, to a coercive state held by an elite who, through a soft revolution, dawned the robes of the colonizer in order to forward their own agenda. There was no hegemony. And history has been crucial in covering this historical process, as archives are not simply storehouses of knowledge, but rather, storehouses of knowledge/power. Bernard Cohn is the earliest anthropologist working in this domain, and, according to Nicholas Dirks, predates the Foucault-ian and Said-ian revolution in ethnographic knowledge. Cohn argues that the archive in India is not where the rise of the state is documented, but rather where the rise of the state occurs. In Colonialism and its forms of knowledge, he argues that archives are foundational to the cultural technologies for maintaining material systems of exploitation: archives define the norms and tastes of a people historically. If the premodern state is defined by theatricality, then the modern state generates its power through classification and organization of which the archive is a site of par excellence. Documents saved are not those that retell an Indian history, but rather those that retell a history conducive to colonial control- told by the British. All other knowledge is cast out as irrelevant and unsaved. Dirks follows Cohns work regarding cultural technologies to show that structures are not internalized cultural logics of the world, but are enunciations of the states power. Further, archives act as monuments to the state in that their pristine condition and presence are more important than the documents themselves, particularly as a reminder as to who controls time. Finally, Ann Stolers work in this area is particularly important in here return to Cohns ideas regarding the archive as a technology itself. In Race and the Education of Desire, Stoler argues that imperial relations are established through the sexual and intimate relationships between men and women and children. Sexual laws are designed not just for the repression of individuals, but also for keeping colonizer and colonized apart. What is interesting in archival records for Stoler, is that they reflect the ways in which neither colonizer and colonized is a static given, and that these lines are often fluid historically speaking. In Against the archival grain she argues that the frictions in various narratives should be read against each other to plot a history of ideological change (an ethnography of historical consciousness like Parmentiers, this time considering power). Its in plotting this change that the archive reveals itself as a microsmic order of the colonial imaginary. Where this imaginary contains multitude 6

Bryce Peake Exam Day 1 of failed projects and futures, those futures remain in the archive to become successes in the control and production of subjects. The problem with this paradigm of thought is primarily that it obscures the states fragmentation as individuals. Always pointing to the non-total nature of colonialism, this field fails to acknowledge the ways in which archivists are themselves historical actors that cannot be generalized as the subject of colonial action sometimes, they resist (ask me about Gibraltar- interesting story re: archivist). Unlike structuralism, however, it is freed from the eventual and focuses on the everyday quotidian as a site for analysis: how does the legality of interracial marriage, Stoler asks, echo in the everyday organization and practice of colonial urban life? Shortcoming, however, are the answers to such questions. Stoler is interested to pose them, but returns quickly to the documented and the textual. In this way, actors are erased from such a technology as mentioned with the archivist above. Culture refers to a structure of feeling, but we never see this structure of feeling in action. Practice-Theoretical Approach Practice theory doubtlessly arises out of a concern for structure, both in the work of Pierre Bourdieu and the importation into anthropology through Sherry Ortner. The primary concern for this approach is the way in which debates about structure or agency obscure the fact that both are intertwined and not so easily described as separate things structure and agency ignoring the ways structures are internalized and produced by individuals through practices which, sometimes, individuals know not what theyre practicing the sense of the game, habitus, etc. Where earlier work in practice theory focused primarily on the reproduction of cultural structures, John and Jean Comaroffs Revelation and Revolution examines the ways in which rupture and order are historically intertwined, such that historical structures and historical agents obscure more about historical relations than they reveal. Examining the Tswana in relation to Christianity, the Comaroffs locate rupture in the conjunction of non-compatible dispositions. In South Africa, missionaries cleared the ground so to speak for colonialism by producing particular types of subjects unlike Mintzs recount of religion in Puerto Rico. These subjects, subjected as they were to Apartheid, were stuck in the contradiction between their material situation and the Christian disposition of universal equality that made them such great subjects complimented by an older contradiction in material accumulation as a sign of good-ness and a distrust for material things. This contradiction existed alongside a religious colonial community that simultaneously saw the Tswanas accumulation of things as a sign of their adherence to Christianity and a threatening sign of glut and/or revolt. It is out of this conjuncture of contradictions that violence arises between Apartheid individuals, changing history into not a structure of conjunctures out of which cultural systems persist, but as a constant series of ruptures in historical relations. Importantly, particularly for volume two of the series, this process is not simply a transformation of the colonized, but a cultural revolution in and for the colonizer. In Ethnography and the Historical Imagination, the Comaroffs focus on what they call the re-enchantment of modernity, and the cultural integration of spiritualist economies with a protestant market ethos. In doing so, they show they ways in which structures are made and remade through practices and semiotic networks, that practice and structure move together throughout history, and, contra Levi-Strauss, that the past is a site for anthropological inquiry.

Bryce Peake Exam Day 1 Historical anthropology, it is argued Brian Axel, will be measured in pre- and postComaroff practice theory. Mark Auslanders award winning book The Accidental Slaveowner is an enunciation of this practice theory, as he combines Parmentiers ethnography of historical consciousness with the Comaroffs emphasis that it is out of ruptures in structure that conflict are born. Auslanders book interrogates the mythology of Kitty, as she is represented in the white and black imaginations of Oxford Georgia. For the African American community, Kitty represents the enduring not-so-subtle continuation of racism in the city, particularly through the treatment of her cottage, in the historical narratives told about her in and by the Methodist church, and at her grave- the only African American to be buried in the white part of the cemetery (so that she would be available to her master in heaven). For the white community, however, Kitty marks the transcendence of legacy of slavery, and the ways that Bishop Andrews the minister over whom the split between the North and South Methodist church occurred made Kitty safe and treated her as his own kin. Auslander works as an activist anthropologist in this juncture to raise consciousness regarding race and racism, while documenting the ways in which the conjuncture of structures has limitless political opportunity for community healing as well as community pain.

Bryce Peake Exam Day 1 QUESTION 2 The fourth branch of historical anthropology and possibly one of its earliest is Marxist historicism. Developed from the work of Karl Marx and subsequent historical schools (namely the British Past and Present New Left Historians), the focus in this approach has been divided. Marxism, in general, is concerned with the lived realities of individuals, with the social organization of labor, and the historical ordering of social relations along the lines of labor and property ownership. Marshall Sahlins argues that beyond this, there is a central division between Marxist, based on what he calls a tale of two Marxs. On the one hand is the economist Marx of Capital, particularly the later volumes, whose concern is with the issues of primitive accumulation the moment when the first capital was produced and the modes of production that define society. On the other hand, and discovered only in the 1960s, is the philosophical humanist Marx, concerned with the mystical nature of the commodity and the alienation of labor that comes with the loss of species being in the capitalist mode of production. Marxist historical anthropologists negotiation of this division between structure and humanism was complicated by the inability of a Marxist framework to account for the unique conditions of colonial capitalism: If capitalism was defined and perpetuated as such by the ability to sell ones labor (free labor) in lieu of having anything else to sell, how can Marxism account for un-free labor characteristic of colonial and imperial relations? Doubtlessly, the division of society in the colony is not as simple as a division in ownership how can historical anthropologists account for the racial division of labor that exists in conjunction with the social development of capital, and can capitalism be capitalism without the ability to sell ones labor? Traveling their individual paths, I examine how each strain of Marxist historical anthropology has tried to solve this contradiction. I begin with the structural political economy of Sidney Mintz, Eric Wolf, and Eleanor Leacock. I then examine the work of Michael Taussig, as he utilizes early Marxs work on commodity fetishism and the social division of labor to maneuver the colonial issue of Marxism. I then discuss the debate that occurred in the pages of Critique of Anthropology that occurred between Taussig and Mintz & Wolf in terms of the historical metaphors and approaches, and political stakes, in this debate. Although not as prolific as the Sahlins-Obeyesekere decade long debate, this debate I believe has important stakes for historical Marxist anthropology. I conclude, then, by showing how the other subfields named in the last question have reflected on the issues on Marxist historical anthropology. POLITICAL ECONOMY One of the earliest and most important works in Marxist ethnography is Sidney Mintzs work on Puerto Rican plantation workers. The Worker in the Cane explores the life of one worker, and for the most part only reports the interactions between Mintz and this man - with little to no analysis. Towards the end of the book, Mintz discusses receiving word from a friend that his interview subject had joined the Evangelical Church. Mintz returns to Puerto Rico to discuss this church joining and attempt to understand its contradiction with the mans previous life as a labor activist and political candidate. Mintz argues that the mans decision to join the church is tied to the unique forms of subjectivity that arise with the alienation of labor. Evangelical Christianity, with its emphasis on guilt and internal conflict as a sign of the need for religion, provides a moral framework in which the newly alienated self of now-corporate plantation life can find solace and understanding. In doing so, Mintz argues that he is not historically or materialist-ly deterministic, the means of production do not determine the trajectory of the mans life; rather, the changes in self hood that arise with the disjunction 9

Bryce Peake Exam Day 1 experienced between plantation and corporate labor provided a base from which the man made particular decisions. From this, Mintz argues that history is best defined as the accumulation of objects and ideas overtime in conjunction with social changes in how individuals do the acquiring. While not political economic in nature, Mintzs approach does resonate with the political economic argument that the base determines the superstructure by providing such a foundation. This disjunction in the forms of ownership to say nothing of the ends it is put to is the central focus for Eric Wolfs Europe and the People without History. Wolf argues that anthropologists have conceived of the colonized world as static before the introduction of capitalism according. Instead, Wolf argues, we need to examine historical documents to reveal the history of capitalism in those spaces, and the ways in which multiple modes of production have coexisted side by side. By modes of production, Wolf is mobilizing the Marxist term for the ways labor is organized and to what ends it is organized. There are three primary modes of production- and this is Wolfs central contribution -: The capitalist, the tributary, and the kinship. In the capitalist mode of production, labor is bought and sold for the purpose of creating better capacity to buy and sell labor. It is Wallersteins biggest mistake to conflate wealth with capital; the difference being that wealth is about having, and capital about infinite spending power. Wealth, Wolf argues, is not a sign of capitalist invasion, but rather one of a tributary mode of production. By tributary, Wolf is referring to the combination of the Asiatic mode of production and the Feudalist, in which the goal of economic activity is to generate wealth because the Asiatic mode had existed for far longer, while the Feudal taken as the token existence of this mode, Wolf attempts to de-Eurocentrize the mode of production. Kings would take tribute not labor and give it to mercantilists to trade around the world while keeping a slice of the action. The goal in this mode of production is to accumulate wealth. There is no reason to cultivate a labor force to increase wealth when a King could simply take more from people tributary modes of production do not contain infinity in its reproduction. Finally, for Wolf, is the kinship mode of production, in which it is the networks of human beings that is always re-invested in: social relations, not social capital. Using these three modes of production, Wolf goes to show the ways in which multiple modes of production have coexisted side by side throughout history defined as the transformation of material conditions over time, and the cultural changes that occur from those. Capitalism, he argues, through the commodity form, magnifies individualistic tendencies in the tributary and kinship mode of production, such that erodes these modes of production the longer it exists in, or is engaged in, in tandem with capitalism. In the history of the global flow of commodities, it is not enough to say that capitalism arrived, rather, we must examine when it arrived and how it arrived and how it dissolved the other modes of production. Eleanor Leacock, who is often left out of this canon by nature of the subjugated status of feminist criticism straddles the lines between political economic by disagreeing with Wolf on the point that capitalism brings out cultural tendencies sympathetic to a capitalist mode of production. Womens subjugation was not a product of Pre-contact North America; women were the head of war parties, made governance decisions, and participated in the everyday exchange of goods. It was not until European arrival, and their demand that they meet with men, that patriarchy was introduced into North America. Patriarchy, then, was not something groomed out of pre-capitalistic trade, but, rather, a structure introduced by invasion. On the other point, however, that multiple modes of production co-exist, and that capitalism eventually dissolves the other, resonates with Leacocks earlier work on Montagnais hunting territory. The Montagnais, she argues, did not have an individualistic sense of land ownership until the 10

Bryce Peake Exam Day 1 commodification of Beaver pelts by Jesuits. Even then, it was a slow transition to the fully privatized division of land that exists today: one could hunt beaver, cut corn, and pick berries on anothers property, so long as they did not take what was commodifiable. The infinite nature of capitalism to need more for meeting needs eventually gave rise to the commodification of those other objects. In re-crafting the theoretical notion of Modes of Production, and tracing the global flow of commodities, Wolf and Leacock try to answer the colonial paradox left by Marx. They do so, unfortunately, but unwittingly assuming that race=mode of production. While they can answer somewhat questions regarding the event of conjuncture, they cannot address the paradox as it is lived out in daily life. A second important work in the political economic approach to Marxist anthropology was the work of Sidney Mintz on Sugar. In Sweetness and Power, Mintz argues that the history of sugar use moving from bourgeois luxury to nectar of the working class is thoroughly enwrapped in the rise of global capitalism and modernity. Mintzs answer to the colonial paradox is to focus on the means of production (not the mode). The means of production the industry are central to the travel of sugar and the production of global capitalism. The necessity for a new high-caffeine beverage for English factory workers, and the synergism for colonial investors that occurs by tea being paired with sugar, and the low cost proto-industrial labor of plantations creates a structural harmony in between all three levels of global historical capitalism Mintz goes so far as to posit that the division of labor used with slaves on the plantation was in part inspiration for how a factory should run, showing further how important sugar is to the development of capitalism. Mintzs argument falls short of the paradox: first, the non-free status of labor still stands in the colony despite is repeated mention that global capitalism is a radical change in the colonizer and colonized, Mintz pays little attention to the subjugation and alienation particular to enslaved AfroCarribeans. Second, by arguing that slave labor is proto-industrial, and thus capitalist, makes no sense in that Marxs definition of capitalism is not by means of production, or necessarily the social division of labor, but rather the ends to which the social division of labor is put. If capitalism is the reproduction of capital ad infinitum, simply paying attention to the form of labor does not answer the question of how to analyze capitalism in spaces of non-free labor. Michael Taussig, representing the humanistic approach to Marxism, attempts to use the commodity as the key to this question. Where the central focus for political economists is ownership, circulation, and production, humanist Marxists are more focused on the class antagonisms that produce classes class is not simply have or have not, but thoroughly enmeshed in the multiple relations to commodities and the conflicts therein. The commodity, as will be important in the next section, is best defined as the congealed form of social labor, which appears to be a thing-in-itself, but is really a product of a particular set of relationships. In Devil and Commodity Fetishism, Taussig is concerned with the definition of appropriation within the clash of economies. The appropriation of the devil symbol in South America previously non-existent - is not appropriation in the sense that it is a borrowed symbol used to mean something previously meaningful; instead, the devil is appropriated to symbolize the contradiction within the two economies of capitalist mine owners and Bolivian miners, between an economy that is premised on production and reproduction of individuals through equal distribution of labor and goods, and an economy premised on the hoarding of resources to accumulate more resources dislocating them from individuals who need them, causing death. The Devil, in short, was not, as the Europeans thought, a symbol for gluttony. The Devil, 11

Bryce Peake Exam Day 1 instead, stands for the fetishistic property of commodities- their ability to infinitely reproduce themselves as if they were human, while sucking the life out of a community. Where Taussigs first work was limited by his adherence to dogmatic Marxist terms and a conceptualization/romanticization of pre-contact South America as devoid a concept of evil, his second work focuses more clearly on the nature of contradiction within class antagonisms in capitalism. Shamanism, Colonialism, and the Wildman examines the terror wrought by Rubber Barrens in South America, and the ways in which their torture and killing of workers was not driven by economic rationality why kill a free labor force/source you cannot reproduce? but driven by a sadistic curiosity that the Barrens projected into workers, whom they subsequently tortured so they would not be tortured first. There exists a second contradiction in this relationship as well: when the colonizers and capitalists were ill and in need of a doctor, and traditional medicine was unsuccessful, they would seek out the wild-est man they could find as his powers were conceived as the strongest. The Wild Man, produced by the colonizers, was a site of Shamanistic power. Taussig argued through this analysis that the commodity and the economy were meaningless artifacts the site of meaning is always the relationship, and contradiction, between capitalist relations. For Taussig, it is the focus on the social contradictions that arise around the commodity that allow for conceptualizing capitalism beyond the owner/not owner division of society. THE DEBATE In 1989, Taussig would write a scathing review of Mintzs Sweetness and Power and Wolfs Europe and the People Without History first published in a food studies journal, and then republished in critique of anthropology. Mintzs and Wolfs analysis, Taussig argued, reified the commodity in the ways that it tracked it around the globe fully formed. Instead, Taussig argued based on his previous work, the commoditys existence as a congealed social relationship one that conceals the violence enacted in production, be it through alienation or physical violence has to be accounted for as created anew in each system of relations that it engages. Further, in telling the history of the commodity with little recognition of the violence it conceals, the meanings it hides, Wolf and Mintz simply make history itself into a commodity. For Mintz, history is a large grocery store: one simply need locate the sugar on the shelf, and along the way will discover the whole of history/modernity/capitalism. For Wolf, history was a giant totality that functioned in rational ways: one simply need pick out the interesting bits to construct the whole (as history was a system). Taussig argues that these two ways of telling history reflect two states of the commodity: thing-ness and fetish. In thing-ness, history is something stands outside of, manipulating it from above; in fetish, history unravels itself, reproduces itself, like a biologically driven living organism. Mintz and Wolf did not take kindly to Taussigs criticisms. He saw his attack as an epistemic war waged by a postmodernist that didnt understand that there was more than one way to be a Marxist. His critique, to them, is theoretical, arguing that theyve left out hermeneutics. Hermeneutics, Mintz and Wolf respond, fail to account for the ways in which people are integrated into a circuit of capital the true focus for Marxists. However, I believe that Taussigs critique is not as epistemic as it is political: by reifying the commodity as travels around the globe, Mintz and Wolf fail to understand the central political contradiction of Marxism (according to David Graeber): the state, defined historically by its monopoly over violence, is the creator of markets at the same time as it is their biggest threat. By hiding the


Bryce Peake Exam Day 1 violence that constitutes the commodity, Mintz and Wolf do not address the colonial contradiction of Marxist political economy, they cover it up. ADDRESSING MARXISM In this final section, I will describe the ways in which particular subfields of historical anthropology have addressed theoretical Marxism. I begin by discussing the connections between Mashall Sahlins work and that of Wolf and Taussig. I then move to the subaltern school, first examining the rooted-ness of imperial criticism in Marxist debates, and then describing Dirks and Guhas responses. I conclude by comparing the work of Jean Comaroff to that of Michael Taussigs, and addressing the relationship between political economy and practice theory. Marshall Sahlins, surprisingly, uses the same materialist definition of culture as Eric Wolf and some might claim that Sahlins carries Marxist sympathies, as seen in his book Stone Age Economics. However, Sahlins project is to render world systems theory and political economy moot: capitalism, as mentioned in answer one, does not have unilateral effects, but is made and remade through the structure of conjunction. In his cosmologies of capitalism, Sahlins asks: if the cultural encoding of capitalism is in Hawaiian indigenous terms, and market rationality is semiotically regimented with indigenous ideas of reproduction, is capitalism western or Hawaiian? This question similarly arises out of the final chapter of Islands of History, when chiefly powers have adopted European names, and capitalism is engrained in the historical disposition of Hawaiians. Taussig would clash with this argument, again, because it fails to pay attention to the violence concealed in and by the commodity form. The longevity of the cultural form works well in the analysis of Hawaii and the instance of Captain Cooks arrival, but it would not hold up well on a sugar plantation, or in the mines, or around rubber production. The continuity of culture in the face of non-violent, courteous capitalism is not necessarily an issue; but the theoretical orientation is. The subaltern school is in part dependent on a structural theory of imperialism defined by Marxist political economists. The Structural theory of imperialism goes beyond Wallersteins argument regarding core and periphery to argue that every core consists of a core (Cc) and periphery (Cp), and every periphery has a core (Pc) and periphery (Pp). Capitalisms exploitative nature requires that Cp not know of Pp, in fear that a potential revolution would occur. Instead, Cc uses Pc to manage and exploit the labor of Pp in the development of capital that will be shipped back to Cc for minimal profit- often in the form of processed raw materials that will be worked by Cp. In return, Pc receives limited amounts of wealth. Guha takes this economic theory and uses it to argue that history is always written from the perspective of the Pc because, if academics are petit bourgeois not from Cc, then their knowledge of Pp is limited. This produced knowledge to summon Saids orientalism legitimates and produces the Pc as the true native/colonized subject, re-erasing the existence of Pp. Beyond this, however, the subaltern school wants to move beyond the material explanation of imperialism: for an Indian state that is supposedly postcolonial, both Guha and Dirks ask, how is coloniality maintained through the cultural? Further interesting, if the archive is instrumental in the production of the state, and all of the economic records are preserved in the archive, might scholars like Dirks ask whether or not the archive creates the networks through which capital flows? Aside from the hypothetical, however, Dirks would also


Bryce Peake Exam Day 1 argue in tandem with figures like Sahlins that definitions of the state and economy are always mediated by cultural definitions of relations and citizenship. If the citizen of the United States is pedagogical, and taught to be a citizen in relation to the economy in one ways, the subaltern school would ask how citizen formations teach individuals to be economically related in differing ways. The tension that remains in this answer between history and history, between coevalness and the historical moment in which two structures violently interact, is best seen in the distinction between Jean Comaroff and Michael Taussig. First, unlike Sahlins, Jean Comaroff believes that external forces such as capitalism must be given their due. In R&R, the ways in which the missionaries arise is documented as a political economic occurrence. And this in some ways positions Taussig and Comaroff similarly. For Comaroff, because of the material violence enacted through Apartheid, the appropriation of symbols, and their use in a resistance can only be unconscious or symbolic as Apartheid limits the horizons of imaginability (until, as described in R&R, contradictions become two heavy on the system). Like Taussig, the violence is meaningless, or not driven by meaning, drastically reorganizing the symbolic universe for the Tshidi and Tswana. For Taussig, however, the symbol produces a revolutionary form of consciousness: Bolivian mine owners deny their workers the use of the symbol, in fear that they will organize around it in resistance. The fundamental difference, then, between practice theoretical and Taussigs humanistic Marxism lies in the cultural response to mediation by the powers external of the mediation itself.