By William Roseberry
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Extra info for Anthropologies and Histories: Essays in Culture, History, and Political Economy
H e notes that their interpretation is difficult a n d that such an appro ach is not “ the only w a y that symbolic forms can be sociologically h a n dled. Fu n ctio n alis m lives, a n d so does psychologism. : 4 5 3 ) . A c c e p t in g this criticism of red u ctive formulas, w e m u s t ques tion w h e th e r Geertz’s analysis has sociologically handled the Balinese cockfight or p a id sufficient attention to its substance. In w h a t follows, no fu n d a m e n ta l reinterpretation of the B a l i nese cockfight is a tt e m p t e d .
19 7 3 b : “ culture consists of socially established structures of m e a n in g in conspiracies terms of w h ic h a n d join them people do such things as signal or p er c e ive insults and answer t h e m . . : 13 ) . O r : “ T h e culture of a people is an e n s e m ble of texts, themselves ensembles, w h ic h the anthropologist strains to read over the shoulders of those to w h o m they p r o p erly belong” ( 19 7 3 c : 4 5 2 ) . T h e last quote comes from the wellk n o w n essay, “ D e e p Play: Notes on the Balinese Co ck fig ht,” to w h ic h m o r e attention is devoted here.
T h e y po in t to areas of tension, irresolvable conflicts betw een m utually e x clusive sets of assumptions— b etw e e n , for e x a m p l e , those w ho take a science of society as their goal a n d seek precise e xp la n a tions of social processes and those explanatory science is possible a n d w ho deny that seek instead such an in te r pr e tive u n d e r s tan d in g of social life. B u t a n tin o m io u s t h in k in g carries its own problems as well. Most obviously, the presentation of theory in terms of opposed p a r a d ig m s thought.