Virtually all theories of how humans have become a distinctive species focus on evolution. Here, Michael Tomasello proposes a complementary theory focused on ontogenetic processes. Built on the essential ideas of Vygotsky, his data-driven model explains how those things that make us most human are constructed during the first six years of life.
In her evocative ethnographic study, Body Language, Kimberly Lau traces the multiple ways in which the success of an innovative fitness program illuminates what identity means to its Black female clientele and how their group interaction provides a new perspective on feminist theories of identity politics—especially regarding the significance of identity to political activism and social change.
Sisters in Shape, Inc., Fitness Consultants (SIS), a Philadelphia company, promotes balance in physical, mental, and spiritual health. Its program goes beyond workouts, as it educates and motivates women to make health and fitness a priority. Discussing the obstacles at home and the importance of the group's solidarity to their ability to stay focused on their goals, the women speak to the ways in which their commitment to reshaping their bodies is a commitment to an alternative future.
Body Language shows how the group's explorations of black women's identity open new possibilities for identity-based claims to recognition, justice, and social change.
Joan McCord (1930-2004) was one of the most famous, most-respected, and best-loved criminologists of her generation. A brilliant pioneer, Dr. McCord was best known for her work on the Cambridge-Somerville Youth Study, the first large-scale, longitudinal experimental study in the field of criminology. The study was among the first to demonstrate unintended harmful effects of a well-meaning prevention program. Dr. McCord's most important essays from this groundbreaking research project are among those included in this volume.McCord also co-wrote, edited, or co-edited twelve volumes and authored or co-authored 127 journal articles and book chapters. She wrote across a broad array of subjects, including delinquency, alcoholism, violence, crime prevention, and criminal theory. This book brings her most important and lasting work together in one place for the first time.
"A deeply troubling, memorable account of teen girls learning the ways of whiteness, Kenny's ethnography helps us to see how a white norm is produced and maintained in suburbia and lets us eavesdrop as the girls police themselves and are policed by the media." --Maureen Reddy, author of Crossing the Color Line: Race, Parenting, and Culture "This book makes a significant contribution to the literature on the social construction of whiteness and to work on U.S. popular culture. It will be of widespread interest." --Kamala Visweswaran, author of Fictions of Feminist Ethnography White middle-class suburbia represents all that is considered "normal" in the United States, especially to the people who live its privileged life. Part ethnography, part cultural study, Daughters of Suburbia focuses on the lives of teenage girls from this world--the world of the Long Island, New York, middle school that author Lorraine Kenny once attended--to examine how standards of normalcy define gender, exercise power, and reinforce the cultural practices of whiteness. In order to move beyond characterizations of "the normal" (a loaded term that can obscure much of what actually defines this culture), Kenny highlights both the experiences of the middle-school students and the stories of three notoriously "bad" white middle-class teenage girls: Amy Fischer, the "Pistol-Packing Long Island Lolita," Cheryl Pierson, who hired a classmate to murder her father, and Emily Heinrichs, a former white supremacist and a teen mom. Arguing that middle-class whiteness thrives on its invisibility--on not being recognized as a cultural phenomenon--Kenny suggests that what the media identify as aberrant, as well as what they choose not to represent, are the keys to identifying the unspoken assumptions that constitute middle-class whiteness as a cultural norm. Daughters of Suburbia makes the familiar strange and gives substance to an otherwise intangible social position. Lorraine Kenny is the Public Education Coordinator for the American Civil Liberties Union's Reproductive Freedom Project. She has taught anthropology at Sarah Lawrence College.
Because childhood is not only culturally but also legally and biologically understood as a period of dependency, it has been easy to dismiss children as historical actors. By putting children at the center of our thinking about American history, Karen Sánchez-Eppler recognizes the important part childhood played in nineteenth-century American culture and what this involvement entailed for children themselves.
Dependent States examines the ties between children's literacy training and the growing cultural prestige of the novel; the way children functioned rhetorically in reform literature to enforce social norms; the way the risks of death to children shored up emotional power in the home; how Sunday schools socialized children into racial, religious, and national identities; and how class identity was produced, not only in terms of work, but also in the way children played. For Sánchez-Eppler, nineteenth-century childhoods were nothing less than vehicles for national reform. Dependent on adults for their care, children did not conform to the ideals of enfranchisement and agency that we usually associate with historical actors. Yet through meticulously researched examples, Sánchez-Eppler reveals that children participated in the making of social meaning. Her focus on childhood as a dependent state thus offers a rewarding corrective to our notions of autonomous individualism and a new perspective on American culture itself.
Discovering Successful Pathways in Children's Development provides a new perspective on the study of childhood and family life. Successful development is enhanced when communities provide meaningful life pathways that children can seek out and engage. Successful pathways include both a culturally valued direction for development and competence in skills that matter for a child's subsequent success as a person as well as a student, parent, worker, or citizen. To understand successful pathways requires a mix of qualitative, quantitative, and ethnographic methods—the state of the art for research practice among developmentalists, educators, and policymakers alike.
This volume includes new studies of minority and immigrant families, school achievement, culture, race and gender, poverty, identity, and experiments and interventions meant to improve family and child contexts. Discovering Successful Pathways in Children's Development will be of enormous value to everyone interested in the issues of human development, education, and social welfare, and among professionals charged with the task of improving the lives of children in our communities.
Studies of human development have taken an ethnographic turn in the 1990s. In this volume, leading anthropologists, psychologists, and sociologists discuss how qualitative methodologies have strengthened our understanding of cognitive, emotional, and behavioral development, and of the difficulties of growing up in contemporary society.
Part 1, informed by a post-positivist philosophy of science, argues for the validity of ethnographic knowledge. Part 2 examines a range of qualitative methods, from participant observation to the hermeneutic elaboration of texts. In Part 3, ethnographic methods are applied to issues of human development across the life span and to social problems including poverty, racial and ethnic marginality, and crime.
Restoring ethnographic methods to a central place in social inquiry, these twenty-two lively essays will interest everyone concerned with the epistemological problems of context, meaning, and subjectivity in the behavioral sciences.
Growing Up Female in Nazi Germany
Dagmar Reese, Translated by William Templer University of Michigan Press, 2006 Library of Congress HQ1210.R4713 2006 | Dewey Decimal 305.235209430904
Growing Up Female in Nazi Germany explores the world of the Bund Deutscher Mädel (BDM), the female section within the Hitler Youth that included almost all German girls aged 10 to 14. The BDM is often enveloped in myths; German girls were brought up to be the compliant handmaidens of National Socialism, their mental horizon restricted to the "three Ks" of Kinder, Küche, Kirche (children, kitchen, and church).
Dagmar Reese, however, depicts another picture of life in the BDM. She explores how and in what way the National Socialists were successful in linking up with the interests of contemporary girls and young women and providing them a social life of their own. The girls in the BDM found latitude for their own development while taking on responsibilities that integrated them within the folds of the National Socialist state.
"At last available in English, this pioneering study provides fresh insights into the ways in which the Nazi regime changed young 'Aryan' women's lives through appeals to female self-esteem that were not obviously defined by Nazi ideology, but drove a wedge between parents and children. Thoughtful analysis of detailed interviews reveals the day-to-day functioning of the Third Reich in different social milieus and its impact on women's lives beyond 1945. A must-read for anyone interested in the gendered dynamics of Nazi modernity and the lack of sustained opposition to National Socialism."
--Uta Poiger, University of Washington
"In this highly readable translation, Reese provocatively identifies Nazi girls league members' surprisingly positive memories and reveals significant implications for the functioning of Nazi society. Reaching across disciplines, this work is for experts and for the classroom alike."
--Belinda Davis, Rutgers University
Dagmar Reese is The Moses Mendelssohn Zentrum Potsdam researcher on the DFG-project "Georg Simmels Geschlechtertheorien im ‚fin de siecle' Berlin", 2004
William Templer is a widely published translator from German and Hebrew and is on the staff of Rajamangala University of Technology Srivijaya.
Corporate accountability is never far from the front page, and as one of the world’s most elite business schools, Harvard Business School trains many of the future leaders of Fortune 500 companies. But how does HBS formally and informally ensure faculty and students embrace proper business standards? Relying on his first-hand experience as a Harvard Business School faculty member, Michel Anteby takes readers inside HBS in order to draw vivid parallels between the socialization of faculty and of students.
In an era when many organizations are focused on principles of responsibility, Harvard Business School has long tried to promote better business standards. Anteby’s rich account reveals the surprising role of silence and ambiguity in HBS’s process of codifying morals and business values. As Anteby describes, at HBS specifics are often left unspoken; for example, teaching notes given to faculty provide much guidance on how to teach but are largely silent on what to teach. Manufacturing Morals demonstrates how faculty and students are exposed to a system that operates on open-ended directives that require significant decision-making on the part of those involved, with little overt guidance from the hierarchy. Anteby suggests that this model—which tolerates moral complexity—is perhaps one of the few that can adapt and endure over time.
Manufacturing Morals is a perceptive must-read for anyone looking for insight into the moral decision-making of today’s business leaders and those influenced by and working for them.
Most Native Americans in the United States live in cities, where many find themselves caught in a bind, neither afforded the full rights granted U.S. citizens nor allowed full access to the tribal programs and resources—particularly health care services—provided to Native Americans living on reservations. A scholar and a member of the Winnebago Tribe of Nebraska, Renya K. Ramirez investigates how urban Native Americans negotiate what she argues is, in effect, a transnational existence. Through an ethnographic account of the Native American community in California’s Silicon Valley and beyond, Ramirez explores the ways that urban Indians have pressed their tribes, local institutions, and the federal government to expand conventional notions of citizenship.
Ramirez’s ethnography revolves around the Paiute American activist Laverne Roberts’s notion of the “hub,” a space that allows for the creation of a sense of belonging away from a geographic center. Ramirez describes “hub-making” activities in Silicon Valley, including sweat lodge ceremonies, powwows, and American Indian Alliance meetings, gatherings at which urban Indians reinforce bonds of social belonging and forge intertribal alliances. She examines the struggle of the Muwekma Ohlone, a tribe aboriginal to the San Francisco Bay area, to maintain a sense of community without a land base and to be recognized as a tribe by the federal government. She considers the crucial role of Native women within urban indigenous communities; a 2004 meeting in which Native Americans from Mexico and the United States discussed cross-border indigenous rights activism; and the ways that young Native Americans in Silicon Valley experience race and ethnicity, especially in relation to the area’s large Chicano community. A unique and important exploration of diaspora, transnationalism, identity, belonging, and community, Native Hubs is intended for scholars and activists alike.
Meaningful places offer a vital counterbalance to the forces of globalization and sameness that are overtaking our world, and are an essential element in the search for solutions to current sustainability challenges. In Native to Nowhere, author Tim Beatley draws on extensive research and travel to communities across North America and Europe to offer a practical examination of the concepts of place and place-building in contemporary life. Tim Beatley reviews the many current challenges to place, considers trends and factors that have undermined place and place commitments, and discusses in detail a number of innovative ideas and compelling visions for strengthening place.
Native to Nowhere brings together a wide range of new ideas and insights about sustainability and community, and introduces readers to a host of innovative projects and initiatives. Native to Nowhere is a compelling source of information and ideas for anyone seeking to resist place homogenization and build upon the unique qualities of their local environment and community.
Education specialists have written volumes on the best ways to help children learn to read and write, but who is helping them navigate the potentially treacherous waters of social interactions? While in school to study, children are also preoccupied with understanding the rules governing social relationships. Issues of trust and loyalty, rivalry and conflict, belonging and exclusion affect all school-aged children, but very few lesson plans include social development skills. The Promotion of Social Awareness summarizes thirty years of research on the social development of children in elementary and middle school, and shows how this work has led to a series of programs that promote the social competence of children and adolescents. Rich with lessons drawn from real life, the book includes an in-depth account of the author's partnership with an innovative program designed to help educators promote a sound ethic of social relationships among children, a case study of a teacher particularly gifted at promoting such relationships, and the tale of how the author's theoretical framework fared cross-culturally when exported to Iceland. The Promotion of Social Awareness documents Robert Selman's efforts both as a practitioner trying to help young people develop their interpersonal skills and as a researcher attempting to understand the factors that promote or hinder social development. Selman believes that getting along with others involves concrete and measurable social skills and actions that can be taught. The book underlines how the science of social development has given rise to initiatives and programs that can be used in educational settings to help children get along with each other, and may in the long run help prevent violence, drug abuse, and prejudice. Unique in its marriage of theory and practice, The Promotion of Social Awareness will appeal to a wide readership, including developmental psychologists, educators, and parents.
For generations of anthropologists, the Baining people have presented a challenge, because of their apparent lack of cultural or social structure. This group of small-scale horticulturists seems devoid of the complex belief systems and social practices that characterize other traditional peoples of Papua New Guinea. Their daily existence is mundane and repetitive in the extreme, articulated by only the most elementary familial relationships and social connections. The routine of everyday life, however, is occasionally punctuated by stunningly beautiful festivals of masked dancers, which the Baining call play and to which they attribute no symbolic significance.
In a new work sure to evoke considerable repercussions and debate in anthropological theory, Jane Fajans courageously takes on the "Baining Problem," arguing that the Baining define themselves not through intricate cosmologies or social networks, but through the meanings generated by their own productive and reproductive work.
At the beginning of the twentieth century, “hysteria” was a medical or psychiatric diagnosis applied primarily to women. In fact, the term itself comes from the Greek, meaning “wandering womb.” We have since learned, however, that this diagnosis evolved from certain assumptions about women’s social roles and mental characteristics, and is no longer in use.
The modern equivalent of hysteria, however, may be borderline personality disorder, defined as “a pervasive pattern of instability of self-image, interpersonal relationships, and mood, beginning in early adulthood and present in a variety of contexts.” This diagnosis is applied to women so much more often than to men that feminists have begun to raise important questions about the social, cultural, and even the medical assumptions underlying this “illness.” Women are said to be “unstable” when they may be trying to reconcile often contradictory and conflicting social expectations.
In Women and Borderline Personality Disorder, Janet Wirth-Cauchon presents a feminist cultural analysis of the notions of “unstable” selfhood found in case narratives of women diagnosed with borderline personality disorder. This exploration of contemporary post-Freudian psychoanalytic notions of the self as they apply to women’s identity conflicts is an important contribution to the literature on social constructions of mental illness in women and feminist critiques of psychiatry in general.