Distant Mirrors: America as a Foreign Culture

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Philip R. DeVita, James D. Armstrong
Wadsworth/Thomson Learning, 2002 - History - 197 pages
Anthropology has a long history of the "other," yet we can look right here at home for the strangeness we seek. We often neglect to ask the questions that reveal our own culture's underlying value and beliefs. In this volume, we bring the American culture into focus. For students to understand the full impact of ethnography, to experience cultural relativity and to gain a foundation to build informed comparisons, students need a firm grasp of their own culture--and need to use this volume. The Third Edition consists of 19 essays written by anthropologists and other scholars using an ethnographic perspective. The essays enable students to understand themselves better by focusing on their own culture and seeing it from a new perspective. This collection gives anthropology a comparative perspective that provides a reflective lens, a mirror, for understanding ourselves and the world in which we live.

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The American Cultural Configuration
Professor Widjojo Goes to a Koktel Parti

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About the author (2002)

Philip R. DeVita received his Ph.D. from the University of California, Davis, and is Professor of Anthropology at the State University of New York, Plattsburgh. Professor DeVita's teaching and research interests include cultural, economic, linguistic, and psychological anthropology, as well as peoples of the Pacific and cultures of the Canadian Maritimes. Professor DeVita has edited numerous books and anthologies, including THE NAKED ANTHROPOLOGIST: TALES FROM AROUND THE WORLD, AND THE HUMBLED ANTHROPOLOGIST: TALES FROM THEPACIFIC, both published by Wadsworth.

James D. Armstrong is Professor of Anthropology at the State University of New York, Plattsburgh, where he teaches courses on Israeli culture, sexuality, methods, and global problems. He has done extensive fieldwork on identity and social organization in modern-day Israel, and published articles on mainstream Israeli culture, extensionist semantics, and engaged pedagogy.

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