Re: what exactly do anthropologists do?

raja (
27 Jun 1995 16:01:16 GMT

> Tradition defined in the above sense is perfectly consistent with the tradition/modernity dichotomy. My assertion is that y=
our ana=3D
>lysis simply reiterates the above dichotomy and argues on the basis of its spurious claims, that the non-western world ought to put=
>aside stasis (tradition) and embrace dynamism (modernity) aka European institutions.

>>You use the word "ought", as in, "the non-western world *ought to* >>..."emphasise mine). I emphasize the term, to highlight how >=
>inappropriate it is to this discussion.

Judging from your response to the above paragraph, it is quite clear that you do not understand its basic argument. Please pay atte=
ntion to the claim that your analysis centers itself in the dichotomy of traditional/modern, and respond to this claim. The 'ought'=
becomes clear if you paid a little attention to the historical record. The transformation of societies around the world into integ=
rated plantation-style economies catering to the fancies of western capitalists and their henchmen, is not something that takes plac=
e by choice. Have you heard of the World Bank, the IMF? Have you heard of the Bretton Woods aggreement, the Berlin Conference? Perh=
aps 'closer' to home, have you heard of the Yalta conference? What was the 'cold war?' Is it relevant to our discussion of Euroamer=
ican hegemony and third world struggle against domination? If so then how? I am inviting you to venture into the historical record=

>>It is certainly an option to eshew western technology and attempt to >>live in a traditional society. The option may even be viabl=
e, since >>the west has basically renounced rule by conquest. But as I said >>earlier, it leads to an instability, because a nation =
which does not >>possess western military technology is at a serious disadvantage, and >>will present a serious temptation to the ne=

The assertion that the west has renounced 'rule by conquest' does not necessarily mean that countries, societies, and peoples have a=
ny more choice today, with regard to integration into the plantation-style world system. Perhaps you are not aware of the rampage o=
f western capital and the struggles going on on the third world against the same today.

'Western military technology' as a solution to the problem of what? Keeping the whole neighbourhood frightened into colective submi=
ssion? Thats militarism bordering on madness isn't it? We know who benefits from wars in the third world, don't we; well, maybe th=
ose of us who pay attention to the historical record and read the news at least once in a while. 'Western military technology' can =
best be summed up in terms of its own greatest achievement:MUTUAL ASSURED DESTRUCTION (MAD), which your generals and statesmen toute=
d as the ultimate deterrant.

.to be continued..