Bookbeat

Bookbeat: August 2010

The Eastern Archaic, HistoricizedThe Eastern Archaic, Historicized

by Kenneth Sassaman
Department of Anthropology
(Altamira Press, 2010)
Available through Altamira Press

The Eastern Archaic, Historicized offers an alternative perspective on the genesis and transformation of cultural diversity over eight millennia of hunter-gatherer dwelling in eastern North America. For many decades, archaeological understanding of Archaic diversity has been dominated by perspectives that emphasize localized relationships between humans and environment. The evidence, shows, however that Archaic people routinely associated with other groups throughout eastern North America and expressed themselves materially in ways that reveal historical links to other places and times. Starting with the colonization of eastern North America by two distinct ancestral lines, the Eastern Archaic was an era of migrations, ethnogenesis, and coalescence--an 8,200-year era of making histories through interactions and expressing them culturally in ritual and performance.

- Publisher

Spatial Turns: Space, Place, and Mobility in German Literature and Visual CultureSpatial Turns: Space, Place, and Mobility in German Literature and Visual Culture

by Barbara Mennel
Department of Languages, Literatures, and Cultures
(Rodopi, 2010)
Available through Erudist

The phrase "spatial turns" signals the growing importance of space as an analytical as well as representational category for culture. The volume addresses such emerging modes of inquiry by bringing together, for the first time, essays that engage with spatial turns, spatiality, and the theoretical implications of both in the context of German culture, history, and theory. Migrating from fields like geography, urban studies, and architecture, the new centrality of space has transformed social-science fields as diverse as sociology, philosophy, and psychology. In cultural studies, productive analyses of space increasingly cut across the studies of literature, film, popular culture, and the visual arts. Spatial Turns brings together essays that apply a spatial analysis to German literature and other media and engages with specifically German theorizations of space by such figures as Siegfried Kracauer and Walter Benjamin.

The volume is organized in four sections: “Mapping Spaces” addresses cartography in all forms and in its intersection with culture; “Spaces of the Urban” takes up one of the key sites of spatial studies, the city; “Spaces of Encounter” considers how Germany has become a contact zone for multiple ethnicities; and “Visualized Spaces” concerns the theorization of space in film and new media studies.

- Publisher

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