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"I Foresee My Life": The Ritual Performance of Autobiography in an Amazonian Community (review)

"I Foresee My Life": The Ritual Performance of Autobiography in an Amazonian Community (review) 04-Reviews 8/23/05 9:19 AM Page 441 Reviews 441 fashion, Scott argues that, when considered in semiotic terms, “Islam, through its relative stasis, has preserved the violence of signs—a unified religious, legal and social code observing a fixed, sacred and non-negotiable link between sign and object,” whereas “in the Greek period and since the Renaissance in particular, Europe has tended progressively to separate sign from object, lib- erating thought from any attachment to the real and so from immovable vio- lent hierarchies” (10). In this description of, and adherence to, a view of the so-called clash of cultures in terms of Islamic stasis and European mobility, exotic nostalgia turns back upon itself (as it so often does), reversing the crit- ical itinerary with which one might (im)possibly have hoped to invest it, and making it exceedingly clear that this critic of modernity basks in the knowl- edge that we can, and must, eventually leave the “other” behind and go home again to a less violent place where “semiotic choice,” and individuals capable of exercising “acute semiotic awareness,” are able to flourish (26, 215). In the name of this precious choice, be it semiotic or (as George W. Bush and his http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Biography University of Hawai'I Press

"I Foresee My Life": The Ritual Performance of Autobiography in an Amazonian Community (review)

Biography , Volume 28 (3) – Oct 4, 2005

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Publisher
University of Hawai'I Press
Copyright
Copyright © 2005 Biographical Research Center.
ISSN
0162-4962
eISSN
1529-1456

Abstract

04-Reviews 8/23/05 9:19 AM Page 441 Reviews 441 fashion, Scott argues that, when considered in semiotic terms, “Islam, through its relative stasis, has preserved the violence of signs—a unified religious, legal and social code observing a fixed, sacred and non-negotiable link between sign and object,” whereas “in the Greek period and since the Renaissance in particular, Europe has tended progressively to separate sign from object, lib- erating thought from any attachment to the real and so from immovable vio- lent hierarchies” (10). In this description of, and adherence to, a view of the so-called clash of cultures in terms of Islamic stasis and European mobility, exotic nostalgia turns back upon itself (as it so often does), reversing the crit- ical itinerary with which one might (im)possibly have hoped to invest it, and making it exceedingly clear that this critic of modernity basks in the knowl- edge that we can, and must, eventually leave the “other” behind and go home again to a less violent place where “semiotic choice,” and individuals capable of exercising “acute semiotic awareness,” are able to flourish (26, 215). In the name of this precious choice, be it semiotic or (as George W. Bush and his

Journal

BiographyUniversity of Hawai'I Press

Published: Oct 4, 2005

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