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By Vincent Crapanzano

Treating topics as varied as Roman carnivals and Balinese cockfights, circumcision, dreaming, and spirit ownership in Morocco, transference in psychoanalysis, self-characterization in teenage women' gossip, Alice in Wonderland, and Jane Austen's Emma, discussion types in hermeneutics, and semantic vertigo in Hamlet's Elsinore, those essays glance severely on the internal workings of interpretation in human sciences and literary learn.

In smooth Western culture's makes an attempt to interpret and speak the character of alternative cultures, Crapanzano reveals a crippling predicament in illustration. He indicates how the hunt for wisdom of "exotic" and "primitive" humans is usually harassed with an unexamined want for self-definition, and he units forth the ensuing interpretive paradoxes, rather the suppression of any knowledge of the play of strength and wish in such an procedure. what's lacking from modern theories of interpretation is, in Crapanzano's account, an important knowing of the position context performs in any act of conversation or its representation-in interpretation itself.

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