Re: self/other

Chris Colvin (cjcolvin@VT.EDU)
Thu, 2 Nov 1995 11:26:42 -0500

been "lurking" for a while on this list, but Edwina Taborsky's mention of a
dialogic interaction between Self and Other has, I think, given me a place
where I can jump in. I am not familiar with many of the currents of
contemporary anthro. theory but i was just wondering if anyone has ever
extended, in a systematic way, this theme of a dialogic interaction to
anthropological theory. I ask because I have recently been dealing with
Martin Buber and his biographer/friend/student Maurice Friedman and how
their work on dialogic approaches can be applied to literary criticism. My
specific interests have been using this approach to illuminate literature
of the absurd and postcolonial African and Carribbean literature. It seems
to me the same problems that this reworking of literary critique tries to
address are some of the common problems of anthropology (power differences,
goal-orientation, the "Consuming Self")

If anyone knows about a theorist who has incorporated this concept
of dialogue into anthropology, please let me know. (Mineke Schipper is
also someone who I have run across that begins to deal with this issue, but
I haven't seen where she develops it.)


Chris Colvin

p.s. I don't know how sexy it is to cite Martin Buber or Mineke Schipper,
but it seems to me that there really is very little that is "new under the
sun." Who does get cited and who doesn't is an interesting question (and
dynamic) though. Maybe it is one of those questions we can rethink...

Christopher J. Colvin
Music Department, Virginia Tech