[URBANTH-L]AAA 07 panel on the spectacle

Jennifer Hubbert hubbert at lclark.edu
Mon Feb 12 13:31:05 EST 2007

Dear Colleagues,

Thomas Carter and I are putting together a panel on the concept of the 
spectacle for AAA 07 and are interested in seeking panelists with 
similar research interests.  I've pasted a very tentative abstract below 
for your consideration.  It's quite broad at this point to accommodate a 
wider range of possibilities but will be further narrowed once we have a 
full panel.  I myself am doing work on the 2008 Olympics in China.  
Please respond to myself (hubbert at lclark.edu, Lewis & Clark College) or 
Thomas (ethnocuba at yahoo.com, University of Brighton) if you are 
interested and/or have any further questions.  We are hoping to submit 
this for invited status and the application needs to be in by the first 
of March.  Please feel free to pass this message along to anyone who 
might be interested.

Best, Jennifer Hubbert

Jennifer Hubbert
Department of Sociology and Anthropology
Lewis & Clark College
Portland, OR 97219

The Place of Spectacle and the Spectacle of Place in Anthropology
The production of social spectacles has permeated anthropological 
thinking with some, like MacAloon (1984) arguing for the coalescing of a 
sense of community while others have posited that spectacle as a form of 
ritual behaviour serves as a liminal space in which social change can be 
enacted and enabled (Turner 1967, Damatta 1984).  Still others suggest 
that spectacle does not simply facilitate change but can serve to erase 
and re-create memory and history thereby reducing social relations to 
nothing but spectacular imagery (Debord 1995).  The papers in this panel 
consider the theoretical place of spectacle in social analysis by 
considering how various spectacles are used by their participants to 
create senses of being and locatedness in the world. Among the issues 
within such considerations are the contestation of representation, the 
power dynamics within and surrounding performance, and the production of 
social memory and history.  These concerns probe the interlocking global 
and local contexts and meanings of any given spectacle; a spectacle that 
defines both a sense of being in the world, a Self , and one or more 
definitive Other(s).

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