Socio-cultural construction of infertility in Turkey : the reasons for the increasing use of new reproductive technologiesDemircioǧlu, Ayşe Merve January 2010 (has links)
No description available.
Image, performance and identity : an exploration of the practices and discourse of multi-media stardom in Hong KongLeung, Wing-Fai January 2009 (has links)
This thesis is the result of a historically and culturally specific project in Hong Kong, exploring the practices and discourse of multi-media stardom alongside the changing social and cultural landscapes, through an investigation of the key themes: image, performance and identity. I undertook fieldwork in Hong Kong in 2005 and carried out qualitative, cultural analysis of multi-media stardom as symbolic forms that embody patterns of meaning, in contrast to star studies that tend to be dominated by Hollywood examples and focus on the examination of texts without considering the specific contexts of production and consumption. This thesis explores the longstanding practices of multi-media stardom in Hong Kong and the discourse surrounding the key themes of image, performance and identity as they were influenced by the unique social and cultural contexts. It examines multi-media stardom as a prominent element of the indigenisation of popular culture in the 1970s in which social changes created a demand for local stars. Transformations in stardom were then mapped onto the unique history of the media industries, and political and economic contexts since 1980, culminating in a shift towards the increasing disjuncture between performances and image making from the mid-1990s onwards, alongside the disintegration of the mass market. Despite this shift, the close relationships between media and the fluid cross-media movements of the stars remained. The discourse of performance and identity continued to be associated with a previous generation of stars who acquired multi-faceted skills through long periods of training, a characteristic of the distinctive traditions of Chinese performance arts. Stars were symbolic markers of an imagined collective Hong Kong identity, which perpetuated a social mobility ideal constructed through a government endorsed cultural discourse that had continued since the post-war period. These stars were nostalgically articulated to an essential identity as Hong Kong subjects of a golden age, forming a part of the discursive construction of collectivity as a response to the post-1990s re-emergence of the cultural others. The thesis analyses the multi-media nature of stardom, the persistent discourse of a distinctive tradition of performance and an essential Hong Kong identity articulated to the indigenous stars, contextualised against the specific cultural and social backdrops.
Negotiating protection : Bedouin material culture and heritage in JordanMikkel, Bille January 2009 (has links)
This thesis examines protection against risks as material and social phenomena among the Ammarin tribe in Petra – a settled Bedouin community in southern Jordan. By examining the active role of material culture that is often disregarded in risk studies, the thesis discusses how protective strategies are entangled in cultural, religious, and national identities. Using ethnographic methods, I investigate protection against selected risks: harm from evil eyes, violation of domestic sanctity, and cultural heritage dilapidation. Protection against these risks is examined through studies of architecture, the social use of luminosity, prophylactic items, saint veneration, Qur’anic items, and heritage production. The thesis challenges the preoccupation with “meaning” in material culture studies, by focusing on conceptualizations of “presence” and “absence” as equally important to protective efficacy. Some informants, for example, adopt an orthodox scriptural Islamic approach to protection and denounce certain material registers as un-Islamic and materialistic leftovers from an ignorant past, and rather prescribe Qur’anic remembrance. For other informants the very physicality of such contested strategies are confirming their efficacy, and act as material anchors for negotiating Bedouin identities in response to a rapid transformation from nomadic pastoralists to sedentary wageworkers. The tensions surrounding the materiality of protection, along with the role of the past in the present is further investigated through the contested public representations of Ammarin culture, along with a detailed study of the process leading to the protection of Bedouin culture by UNESCO Intangible Cultural Heritage. The overall conclusion of this research is that negotiating efficacious protection against perceived risks, is about actively taking a stance on senses of exposure, vulnerability and uncertainty towards the people, places and things that are cherished. These strategies simultaneously act as potent public exposure of social, religious, and national moral identities that may empower, exclude, or ostracize people.
The Land Chief's embers : ethnobotany of Batéké fire regimes, savanna vegetation and resource use in GabonWalters, G. M. January 2010 (has links)
Anthropogenic fire regimes and society are linked: social change modifies fire application which then impacts ecosystems. In the past 40 years, savanna burning has changed markedly around the world as policies, laws, and cultures change. This thesis explores the links between fire regime and culture by analysing the decline of the fire-based Bateke land chief’s authority in Gabon. Unlike other parts of sub-Saharan Africa where colonial anti-fire policies have been strict and punitive, fire policy in Gabon has been lax. As such, today’s savanna fires are neither suppressed nor managed, and their value to the local economy and national conservation is not yet fully recognised. This thesis addresses the changing role of the Bateke as savanna keepers, the effects of their fire regimes on their savanna ecosystem, and the contribution of fire to biodiversity and present day fire-foraging. The effects of the fire regime on the ecosystem are explored through plant collection, participant observation, surveys, interviews, and finally vegetation plots analysing the impacts of different fire treatments. The land chief’s authority was part of a magico-religious system where land fertility was guaranteed by conducting rituals and proper burning procedures. This system effectively ended in the late 1960s during a tumultuous time in Bateke history, resulting in a change in fire culture and hence fire regime. The fires under the land chief system were regulated, annual, dry season hunting occurrences conducted by the community and part of maintaining land fertility. By contrast, today’s fires are lit by individuals who are no longer under the land chief’s authority. Hence, these fires are unregulated, occurring at all times of the year and often semi-annually. Generally, burning stimulates tree resprouting and clears mature grass. However annual and semi-annual fires have different levels of resprout survival based on resprout size, fire intensity, and patchiness. More frequent fires are less intense, creating patches which serve as micro-sites favouring stem survival. In terms of plant diversity, the savannas maintain a flora that is unique for Gabon, though not rare worldwide. The dry-season seems to be the most important season to burn in order to maintain this diversity. Anthropogenic fire is important for Bateke livelihoods where fire and foraging are related; 80% of survey respondents link fire and food. Today’s foraging traditions make fire important for Bateke livelihoods, despite being less connected to land fertility rituals of the past. Taking a national view, most protected savannas in Gabon are not managed by fire and some managers do not recognise its importance to local livelihoods and culture. The land chief system, though probably not designed to protect resources, may offer lessons of fire control in a cultural context of contemporary management of protected areas.
The phylogenetic signal in the skull of New World monkeysBjarnason, A. January 2012 (has links)
Many phylogenetic relationships based on morphology were rejected following the molecular revolution, yet there is a need for phylogenetic analysis of morphology that reliably infers phylogenetic relationships so that we can understand the evolutionary relationships of extant and fossil taxa. I use geometric morphometric and distance-based phylogenetic methods to study the phylogenetic signal in the skull of a clade of primates, the platyrrhines or New World monkeys, and re-examine congruence between molecular and morphological analyses. I collected digital anatomical landmark data from around 1400 specimens belonging to 16 genera and 50 species of New World monkeys, and nine primate outgroup taxa. I take a modular approach, inferring phylogenies based on the whole skull, face and cranial base, with a range of outgroups and outgroups combinations, and repeat analyses for male, female, pooled sex and separate sex data. Inferred relationships are compared to the most recent platyrrhine molecular phylogeny and past morphology-based analyses. Strepsirrhine outgroups performed slightly better as outgroups, as platyrrhines and Old World monkey or ape outgroups often shared homoplasy that interfered with accurate phylogenetic analysis. Phylogenetic analysis of all platyrrhines recovers a weak phylogenetic signal, but phylogenetic analysis of each of the three major molecular clades, atelids, pitheciids and cebids, finds greater congruence between molecular and morphological analyses. The atelids have a strong phylogenetic signal in the face, the pitheciids in all regions of the skull, and the cebid skull and face support three molecular lineages for callitrichines, cebines and owl monkeys, but infer molecular incongruent relationships within the callitrichines. Phylogenetic analysis of the face holds a stronger phylogenetic signal than expected, whereas the cranial base was more plastic and had a weak phylogenetic signal. In platyrrhines, phylogeny, diet, allometry and encephalization all have an important role in shaping craniodental morphology.
Recording and interpreting a rock art complex situated in Northern Greece : a tripartite approachPilavaki, Stella January 2011 (has links)
This dissertation adopts an innovative tripartite approach in recording and reaching an adequate understanding of a hitherto untheorised and under-investigated rock art complex situated in Northern Greece. Post-structuralism and phenomenology form the theoretical ground on which this study is founded. It phenomenologically explores a set of experiences not restricted to vision but related to a multi-sensory, bodily engagement with the art and the land in which it exists. It also examines the structuring of the motifs in relation to their location in the landscape in order to identify possible patterns indicative of the social actions that generated them and of which they are the material traces. The parameters of this art are then placed and assessed against what is known about the cultural background of the makers from historical sources. This study demonstrates that the conceptual and the experiential are inextricably linked, and thus structuralism and phenomenology are not mutually exclusive as has been often thought. The third aspect of my approach, namely the use of historical literature, allows assessment of the way that structures of meaning might relate to a specific cultural context. The overall aim of this thesis is to evaluate the role that the decoration of rocks may have played in the social construction of landscapes and the constitution of the social self.
Land, people and post-socialist policies in southern SiberiaIntigrinova, T. P. January 2009 (has links)
The study is based on sixteen months of ethnographic research carried out between 2003 and 2007 in communities practising transhumant pastoralism in the mountainous landscape of southern Siberia. It focuses on centrally defined land policies and their local implementation in the context of post-socialist land reform, with particular reference to the process of land allocation, land titling and the effect of these factors on pastoral resource use and livelihoods. The study compares four sites populated by Buryats and other indigenous people and distinguished by contrasting regimes of land tenure and varying conditions of resource availability. The literature on post-socialist land reform in Russia attributes its slow pace to the control of local elites over resources and shortages of capital and household labour. The present research finds that household livelihoods relying on mobile pastoral production are more economically viable in conditions of labour and capital shortage in comparison with more intensified methods. The viability of local household production coupled with resource shortages stimulated a de facto implementation of central policies in the research area. The study finds that legislative ambiguity and the weaknesses of government implementation mechanisms are significant factors influencing reform. The research findings contribute to scholarly literature on pastoral resource use, underlining the importance of flexible access to grazing as a condition to sustain pastoral resources and livelihoods. It demonstrates that post-socialist land policies aimed at land privatisation exclude certain populations from resource use and increase grazing pressure on common pastures. The most pronounced effect of land privatisation was recorded at the research site where grazing land is scarce. Individual households’ access to resources improves as a function of personal connections, economic wellbeing and the education level of household members. The individualisation of land rights, as the research suggests, accentuates social stratification of pastoral communities in post-socialist settings.
Reckoning with the outside : emigration and the imagination of life in Central MoroccoElliot, A. January 2012 (has links)
This thesis explores migration as the abiding imaginative trope in the social life of the Tadla, a rural area of Central Morocco at the feet of the Atlas Mountains where emigration to Southern Europe has been pervasive since the 1980s. Complementing mainstream anthropological literature on migration, which tends to focus on the causes and effects of migratory flows in varied local settings, this study begins with the question of what migration is imagined to be in the first place, and characterises migration’s imposing role in social life through this specific ethnographic understanding. The thesis approaches the phenomenon of migration in the Tadla by grounding its investigation in the native concept of l-barra, ‘the outside’, a polysemic concept that signifies simultaneously specific geographical places (e.g. ‘Europe’), inexhaustible possibilities for better futures, and, more metaphysically, an entity with unique powers over people and things. Two main arguments guide this thesis with respect to l-barra. The first is that l-barra is the constitutive feature of an entire cosmology of migration in the Tadla, in relation to which not only migration but also life more generally is imagined. The second is that by virtue of its constitutive role as a horizon of and for the imagination, this ‘outside’ is also best delineated as an entity-cum-concept that affects social and intimate life in the Tadla in very concrete ways. To develop this argument, the thesis focuses in particular on how migration is both inflected by and in turn inflects local notions of gender and personhood. By tracing how l-barra is implicated in those very practices that define and qualify gendered subjects in the Tadla, the thesis suggests that, in the ethnographic context of Central Morocco, conceptions of gender do not only influence the process of migration, but are also in large part borne of it.
Intangible cultural heritage in Japan : Bingata, a traditional dyed textile from OkinawaSarashima, S. January 2013 (has links)
My thesis is an ethnographic investigation of the social impact of Japan’s Intangible Cultural Heritage (ICH) policy, a government scheme that supports practitioners of traditional crafts and performing arts and defines their skills accordingly. This concept of heritage was developed in Japan immediately following the Second World War, when the country, then under the USA’s control, was attempting to establish a social value of ‘tradition’ while also pursuing the economic and social development that has facilitated the nation’s Americanisation. People in contemporary Japan continue to engage in many traditional practices despite drastic social and cultural changes over the last century. Highly skilled artists and craftsmen, recognised as custodians of traditional cultural expressions, are known as ‘Living National Treasures’ and enjoy widespread respect. The Japanese concept of heritage differs significantly from that found in Euro-North American academic discussion, which has been developed chiefly through the orientation to seek the ‘sense of origin’ by preserving tangible heritage such as historic sites and monuments. Since the United Nations Educational, Science, and Cultural Organi[s]ation (UNESCO) established the Convention for Safeguarding Intangible Cultural Heritage in 2004, the idea of ICH has been incorporated into Western heritage studies. In this context, however, ICH has focused mainly sociopolitical impacts on post-colonial countries. Little attempt has been made to understand how people experience ICH in their daily lives and why ‘tradition’ is needed in contemporary society. Japanese ICH comprises established social institutions in the context of a large, highly developed society where Western influence has led to homogenised ways of living. This thesis aims to question the generally held assumptions about ICH being a social norm through which people respect ‘tradition’ and expect it to be safeguarded for its own sake as a counter value of modernity, westernisation and globalisation. To challenge this monolithic assumption towards ICH, an anthropological analysis is essential to considering ICH as a cultural form of living human activity in an ever-changing society, which has come to be shared by people as a result of modernity. To observe a cultural form inventoried as ‘tradition’, the focus is placed on several entities such as the practitioner, the work, the production techniques, the consumer, and the space where the form originates, including the people who inhabit this space and their relationship with others. A key question is ‘what has happened to the relationship between these entities since the inception of the ICH policy in 1950’? To demonstrate the complexity and sophistication of a cultural form identified as ‘tradition’, I provide an example of a traditional textile-dyeing technique, known as Bingata, practised in Okinawa Prefecture. This study explores the transformative social meaning of Bingata through the process of its ‘traditionalisation’ and its impact to contemporary society. My ethnographic research provides examples of the practitioners’ and local people’s past and present relationship with Bingata, and the culture of consumption surrounding the use of Bingata material. Based on the personal narratives, my observations of people’s bodily actions through the Bingata material acquired during my field research, conducted at Bingata workshops, museums and tourist sites in Okinawa, and a kimono market in Tokyo, I will reveal the metamorphic character of Bingata ‘tradition’, realised through the transformation and innovation of technique, materials and form as a result of craftspeople’s experience of social dynamics and feedback from consumers. Through people’s physical and emotional engagement on the material in several different locations, I analysis the social capacity of production and consumption of Bingata as ‘tradition’. From the anthropological analysis of Bingata practice, I present a constructive approach to ICH, viewing it is a social milieu in which people and their actions and emotions are actively related, by establishing the value of ‘tradition’ in a cultural form. I emphasise how the conservation activities implied by the concept of ICH are better understood as an effort to establish a social institution of ‘tradition’, in which people recognise the value of a cultural form by producing and consuming it.
Using a capability inspired approach to construct a reliable framework for analysing policy in the social economyMcAteer, James January 2014 (has links)
The aim of this research is to use a capability inspired approach to construct a reliable framework for analysing policy in the social economy. After examining theoretical approaches to explain the emergence of the social economy, and having critiqued the Capability Approach in relation to policy analysis, a literature review is carried out on the development of policy in the social economy in Quebec and Northern Ireland. A case study research design is adopted with regard to policy interventions affecting the social economy, with the aid of illustrations, limited to childcare and housing in both regions. Mapping and document analysis is used and specific policies are interrogated using policy related documents from the 1980s onwards to establish the issues relevant to people subject to those policies. Previous research, analysis, and commentary from various academic, government, and social economy sources are used, as well as communiques, letters, speeches, and input from citizens affected by the policies. An examination of the issues raised in relation to policy development, which affects the social economy, is carried out using Sen's Capability Approach which includes the five instrumental freedoms of political freedoms, economic facilities, social opportunities, transparency guarantees, and protective security which may, if taken into account, increase individual well-being, agency and political participation. From this a Capability Based Framework for analysing policy is developed, incorporating the associated theories of social choice, adaptive preferences, process freedom, agency, internal capabilities, and opportunity freedom. The social economy policies are then examined in relation to the dimensions and questions identified in the framework to establish its effectiveness. It is concluded that the effectiveness of the Capability Based Framework is supported by its ability to highlight issues in policy development, in the social economies examined, in the areas of participation, empowerment, autonomy, recognition, human capacity and equity.
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