More on Taussig

John Mcreery (jlm@TWICS.COM)
Fri, 14 Oct 1994 22:37:41 JST

What, then, is this *particular* form of representation
that Taussig demands awareness of? How does it differ
from the other representations I've mentioned? The works
of art described by Gombrich? The computer programs
constructed by AI researchers/cognitive scientists? The
depictions of data created by information designers? The
evolutionary images to which Stephen Gould attends?
Reader be warned: The remarks that follow are what my
Japanese colleagues would call *oozappa*; loosely
constructed from memory, they should not be thought of as
anything more. With this caveat in mind, I will hazard the
following generalizations:

By and large the other representations I mention are
analyzed in *technical* terms, as attempts to create an
accurate picture of *natural* phenomena that exist
outside the language/imagery in which they are depicted.
Social/cultural/historical factors enter into the way that
they are discussed as conditions that either improve or
hinder their *accuracy*. In Taussig's discussion
representations are always *political*, inseparable from
the power relations of the parties involved in creating and
responding to them. They are, in addition, created and
responded to in *cultural collisions* where people from
different cultural backgrounds encounter each other and,
more often than not, *violence* is an integral part of the

Do other readers find this fair?

John McCreery (JLM@TWICS.COM)