(Saint Mary's College). Godless Carols: Ritual, Conflict, and Community
in the Carpathians, 1880 to 1914.
have been viewed through the prism of ritual as consistently as
the Hutsuls. The customs and ceremonies of these Ukrainian-speaking
inhabitants of the southeastern Carpathian Mountains have inspired
a large number of studies. Over the past two centuries, conflict
has played an important role in defining the place and purpose of
Hutsul rituals. Turn of the century debates about one Hutsul tradition,
Christmas caroling, offer insight into the nature of ritual and
demonstrate that shared rituals do not necessarily mean shared definitions.
Rituals function as conduits through which conflict and competition
can be channeled, but the role of conflict and competition in ritual
is not limited to the interaction among participants--conflicting
and competing definitions shape rituals.
(Bowling Green State University). Photographic Exhibit: Read My
Name: Graffiti Writing and Public Display in New York City.
over the meanings of "the public" in late-20th century
academia are mirrored by struggles within U.S. central cities over
claims to access and ownership of public spaces. This exhibition
illustrates aspects of one of these conflicts through photographs
of two "productions"--graffiti murals--in public school
yards within New York City. One production was created along a Halloween
theme in 1991. The second was created in the "Harlem Hall of
Fame" in 1998, and simply recognizes the "masters"
of the New York graffiti scene. Both run several hundred feet in
length, and reflect the spectacularized (illegal) name-writing tradition
of urban graffiti.
(University of Kentucky). The Celebration of "Domingo de Ramos"
in Porcon-Cajamarca, Peru: Cultural Solidarity in the Face of Ideological
Ramos (Palm Sunday) has been celebrated for centuries in Porcon
with a procession of palm fronds and crosses behind an image of
Christ on a donkey, all of which parade through the community and
converge on the Catholic church for a day of drunken celebration.
Traditionally this has been a community wide event celebrated by
everyone who is Catholic, which was everyone. Because of a variety
of influences, half of the residents of Porcon have converted to
Protestantism in the preceding 30 years. Along with this ideological
shift has come a condemnation of the public celebration of Palm
Sunday. Despite this criticism and diminished support, Domingo de
Ramos remains central to the reproduction and maintenance of Catholic
(or non-Protestant) identity.
(Southampton Institute). Summer Rights.
analyses parades of sexual dissidence. Why do people attend festivals
campaigning for, and often expressing, dissident sexual liberation?
Comparisons can be made between London festivals, particularly Pride,
and those in other parts of the world, such as the Miami Winter
Party. Reference will also be made to displays such as SM pride.
How far are these rituals narcissistic displays of the body, how
far do they have a serious political purpose and cultural impact?
What is the globalizing impact of festivals from one part of the
world that imitate prior queer holidays? Theoretical references
will include Bakhtin, Foucault and others. The approach will be
interdisciplinary. Empirical material will be drawn from interviews
and Internet correspondence from a self-selected sample.
(Brigham Young University). Get Out and Swim: An Analysis of the
Themes of LDS Girls Camp Songs.
author of Reviving Ophelia, has analyzed the messages that today's
society sends teenage girls. Her research reveals that many teenage
girls struggle with issues of identity, ability, and self-worth;
Pipher offers a variety of solutions to these problems. One of her
solutions is that society needs positive rites of passage and rituals
for teenage girls. Girl's camps sponsored by the Church of Jesus
Christ of Latter-day Saints serve as one such positive rite of passage.
My paper analyzes these camps as rites of passage as well as analyzing
some of the songs that are sung at these camps that reinforce the
teaching of the camps as well as reinforcing the camps' purpose
to build feelings of self-worth in teenage girls.
Thomas M Bongiorno.
(Indiana University). Danger: A Key to Ritual Efficacy.
seeks to demonstrate the recurrent, but variable, expression of
socially constructed danger in association with ritual and festival.
I suggest that the emergence of danger in the discourse and production
of these events creates dramatic tension, emotional impact, and
acute awareness of danger in addition to any socially communicative
or pedagogic effect. It is the hypothesis of the author that the
reoccurrence of danger in the ritual genres is no accident, but
an important, and perhaps necessary element for ritual efficacy.
Finally, as social displays of danger, analysis may point to significant
social models of reality.
(University of Chicago). Cultural Representation in Post-Apartheid
South Africa Through the 1998 Grahamstown National Arts Festival.
dancers to black mineworkers' shows in Johannesburg to Zulu and
European poetry readings, South Africa's 1998 Grahamstown National
Arts Festival was an outpouring of cultural diversity, one that
was repressed in the South African apartheid years, especially in
the areas of public performances and community festivals. This paper
will briefly show how the Grahamstown Festival (the biggest festival
of its kind in South Africa), has historically been an instrument
of apartheid's cultural propaganda. Also, this essay will delineate
how the 1998 is representative of a differing and more inclusive
societal attitude toward its own diversity.
Wesley M Bowman.
(Bowling Green State University). The Ideological Strategies of
examines the ideological dynamics of popular American Christmas
films. Instead of limiting this analysis to a traditional Marxist
approach, the model is rethought to include social-psychological
insights (i.e. cognitive dissonance theory) and supplemented with
anthropological and semiotic perspectives. Using this interdisciplinary
approach, I then semiotically dissect the films' semblance of coherence
into a series of cultural contradictions. I conclude that two particular
strategies are recurrently implemented in dissembling these contradictions:
1) the semiotic transmutation of systemic attributes into individual/personal
attributes, and 2) the semiotic interweaving of disparate value-systems
in an attempt at inextricability.
Therese J Boyarsky.
(Western Kentucky University). Oplatki and Me: Reflexivity and Identity
in Ritual Celebration.
What role does
the individual play in ritual celebration in which group belonging
and identity are the main focus, and what happens when that person
is placed outside of his/her "folk group?" This paper
examines this question incorporating both positive and negative
aspects of focusing on personal experience and the reconstruction
of identity in situational contexts. Understanding ourselves and
how we use foodways, ritual, language, and other elements of tradition
may lead us to a better understanding of others. I use the Villia/Wigilia,
a traditional, Slovak/Polish-Catholic ritual the Boyarsky family
participates in each Christmas Eve as a basis for this analysis.
(University of Texas). Lowriders March with Style: Political Demonstrations
as Display Events.
style of car customization is widely practiced by Mexican Americans
and to a lesser extent, African Americans. Lowrider style combines
with clothing, music, and body kinesics to produce a performance
of "minority" identity. In a de-facto segregated city,
this becomes a mobile sign of the barrio. This expressive style
is thus constantly engaged with the politics of everyday life, turning
traffic into a dialogue on identity, place, mobility, and rights
of access to public space. Car shows often provide the context for
lowrider performance. Sometimes lowrider style is deployed in attempts
to directly affect public policy as well, thereby collapsing the
display event with the political demonstration. Recently, lowriders
have taken part in political marches for human rights and against
neo-segregation in Austin, Texas. This paper introduces the distinctive
elements of lowrider style, offers a brief theoretical orientation,
and relates how lowrider style is a tool of direct political action
in a Texas city.
Phyllis M Correa.
(Universidad Autonoma de Queretaro). Halloween Mexican Style: A
Contested Emergent Tradition.
of this paper is to explore the insertion of Halloween into Mexican
popular culture as an emergent tradition related to the themes of
previously existing cultural patterns of important celebrations
for the Day of the Dead on November 2. This provides an excellent
opportunity for the firsthand observation of an ongoing process
of syncretism which should help clarify some of the issues involved
in the acceptance or rejection of specific traits or elements, the
adoption and reworking of traits according to specific cultural
and economic contexts, including the misunderstanding of the content
of these traditions by the recipient culture, as well as its promotion
by businesses: stores that sell costumes and other items; restaurants
and discos that hold Halloween parties; the use of Halloween motifs
for ad campaigns, etc. Finally, this paper will explore the content
and nature of resistance to an increasingly popular emergent tradition
that was called a "cult to the Devil" by the Archbishop
of Mexico in 1998 cautioning that "faithful Catholics should
not have anything to do with cultural influences that have nothing
to do with the veneration given to the dead in Mexico. By dressing
a child in a costume of a black cat or witch, a person is giving
it as a sacrifice to evil in a subtle and sophisticated manner,
since it is a means to promote a cult inspired by Satan" (quoted
in the newspaper Ovaciones, October 28, 1998, p. 3).
(Bowling Green State Univeristy). Turkey and Football, Work and
Play: Gender and the Holiday Kitchen.
examines the gendered aspect of Thanksgiving Day kitchens. Thanksgiving
is generally seen as a time for giving thanks and as a national
holiday it symbolizes a day of rest. Football on the television,
feet up on the recliner, sleeping off the effects of the ladened
feast table. Yet this stereotypical image ignores the hours of preparation
which frequently go into the meal and who works those hours. This
paper considers the complexity of the relationship between kitchens
and women by considering the preparations associated with a holiday
meal. It takes on the perception that the kitchen is a symbol of
women's oppression and confinement within the home and suggests
other ways in which folklorists and other scholars can consider
"traditionally women's spaces."
(Center for the Study of Ideas and Culture). Four Faces of Public
Expressive Display: Conventionalized, Cataclysmic, Propagandistic,
illustrates and explains why the form and function of art and related
public display is determined by primary belief patterns (transcendent
personal predispositions or cultural atmospheres) and world outlooks
(religions, philosophies, and ideologies). It is the way the perceived
completeness, reliability, or severity of problems and answers combine
to make up primary belief patterns and world-outlooks which determines
the form and function of artistic expression.
(LaGuardia Community College). The Feast of the Virgin of Guadalupe
in New York City: A Multi-Layered Analysis.
In this presentation,
based on an ongoing (now eight-year) documentation project, I will
provide a multi-layered analysis of the Festival of the Virgin of
Guadalupe as it is carried out in three site-specific locations
in New York City. Since the signing of the NAFTA accord, there has
been a visible increase in the number of Mexican immigrants to New
York City, and particularly, to Brooklyn. This influx has changed
the ethnic composition of several Brooklyn neighborhoods as well
as the scope and nature of the celebrations in the Mexican calendar.
Using two churches in Brooklyn and the "mother" Church
of the Virgin of Guadalupe, in Manhattan, for comparative purposes,
I will attempt to track the genesis of the Feast in each of the
three neighborhoods. I will then examine the similarities and differences
between the sponsors and participating groups, as well as their
individual modes of performance, iconography, nationalistic symbolism
and other forms of public display.
(Bowling Green State University). Virginia's First Thanksgiving
as State Heritage Celebration.
argue that the "first'real Thanksgiving" took place not
among the Plymouth Pilgrims in 1621 but at Berkeley Plantation along
the James River in 1619. The Berkeley event is celebrated annually
in the "Virginia First Thanksgiving Festival." This celebration
includes a reenactment, a "Virginia Thanksgiving feast,"
statewide school contests for best essay and best poster, and a
formal commemorative program with keynote speakers and military
bands. While there is documentary evidence available to "prove"
the "historical truth" of the Virginians' claim, the real
meaning of both the belief in the primacy of the Virginia Thanksgiving
and the Festival which commemorates it is the celebration of "heritage,"
(Cal Poly, San Luis Obispo). The Vista and the Accent: Competing
Constructions of Vision at the. 1876 Centennial Exhibition in Philadelphia.
of the Centennial were obsessed with the idea of the vista. This
meant the construction of the exhibition as a one-point perspective,
apprehended by a searching, penetrating gaze. In time, they realized
that their audience was not the single, static, detached viewer
implied by perspective, but the multiple, mobile, more engaged viewer
represented by the crowd. The visuality of the crowd was represented,
not by the strong look of the gaze, but by the weak look of the
glance. In response, the organizers began to focus on the creation
of visual accents, and the resulting exhibition was less a text
to be read than a spectacle to be consumed. This illustrates a shift
in visual paradigms, from the disembodied, idealized eye of the
17th and 18th centuries, to the reincarnated eye and physiological
sense of vision that came to dominate in the 19th and 20th centuries.
(George Washington University). Modern Event Management: Teaching
Ancient Traditions in a Contemporary Context.
and ritual arguably date back to the origin of the human species,
in modern times these traditional social, political, and cultural
events have become increasingly known as special events due to several
factors. The factors leading to the contemporization of celebratory
activities will be examined in this paper, from scholarly sources
in anthropology, sociology, and psychology to contemporary findings
from the Harvard Business School. Using the GW Event Management
Program as a case study the investigator will describe how demand
factors have led to the growth of the program which now annually
enrolls 2000 students and is licensing its curriculum to additional
institutions of higher education. The paper concludes with examples
of interdisciplinary work within event management and how students
retain the tradition of ceremonies and rituals while producing modern
special events. Finally, examples of typical research projects underway
within the department will provide a look at future trends for studies
in the ritual field.
(Roehampton Institute, London). Keynote Presentation: Our Lady of
Flowers: the Ambiguous Politics of Diana's Floral Revolution.
feature of the week leading up to the funeral of Diana, Princess
of Wales, was the media and public debate about appropriate and
inappropriate expressions of molrning, and the relationship of these
to the conventions of royal ceremonial. The concept of a "people's
princess" became the focus for a complex play of performative
strategies, derived from multiple national and popular sources.
In particular a form of "public art" emerged, expressed
not only in the carpet of flowers outside the royal palaces and
ancestral stately home, but in improvised shrines in shopping precincts
and on motorway flyovers across the nation. The politics, as well
as the processes, of this public canonization (often described uneasily
as "un-English" in media commentaries) is the main focus
of the paper. By comparing these outward expressions of collective
grief with other cultural rituals (from other royal and state funerals
to traumatic events such as Hillsborough and Dunblane) the nature
and performative power of what has been termed a "floral revolution"
can be interrogated. As a result of this analysis it is possible,
I suggest, to identify at least three political trajectories in
the displays of public grief in Britain. The first, which I term
the "policing of mourning," reveals an investment in authoritarian
modes of social discourse even as it appears to call for freedom
from restraint and tradition, sometimes surfacing in explicitly
nationalist or even xenophobic gestures. The second, performed by
those Earl Spencer named the "constituency of the rejected,"
can be interpreted as a site of emergent political protest, turning
the display of sympathy into a call for social and political reformation.
Lastly, I point to the ways in which the memorialization processes
which followed the funeral helped to recuperate potentially radical
aspects of the mourning into a safe traditionalism, especially through
the deployment of discourses of religion, commerce, aristocracy
and heritage. This interplay between different and even contradictory
elements makes the "floral revolution" itself a complex
and ambiguous phenomenon--one which has perhaps still not run its
course. (This paper is based on an essay forthcoming in Adrian Kear
and Deborah Steinberg  Mourning Diana: Nation, Culture and
the Performance of Grief London: Routledge)
Hann-Ruff. (Wood County Historical Center/Museum).
"All Around the Year": Season's Greetings from Wood County,
This exhibit provides
an introduction to greetings cards of the early 1900s, with an emphasis
on the symbols and themes of Christmas and Valentine's Day cards.
The exhibit also presents a selection of cards in celebration of
New Year's, Easter, Midsummer, Halloween, Thanksgiving, friendship,
love, marriage, and birthdays. The first half of the 20th century
saw significant shifts in the type of sentiments written, innovations
in production techniques, and changes in the colors and designs
used in decorative flourishes. The display explores the basics of
these changes and introduces the viewer to the beauty and delight
of greeting cards.
The title of this exhibit
is borrowed from the book, All Around the Year, Holidays & Celebrations
in American Life by Jack Santino of the Popular Culture Department
at Bowling Green State University.
Curator of exhibit:
Stacey Hann-Ruff of the Wood County Historical Center/Museum in
Bowling Green, Ohio. Ms. Hann-Ruff is also a graduate student in
anthropology at Indiana University - Bloomington. For more information
about the Wood County Historical Center/Museum, please call (419)
(Indiana University). Celebrating Iowa Folklife Video Screening
is a video production that was prepared for use in Iowa's secondary
schools as part of a multi-media resource kit. The video presents
three local festivals that are held in Iowa: a rodeo, a bike-ride
across the state, and a local celebration of Norwegian heritage.
The video shows differences and similarities between the events
as the producer shows high school students how to interpret the
events as celebratory means of cultural display. Through on-camera
interviews as well as voice-overs, the video invites the viewers
to see the events through the lenses of theoretical perspectives
offered by Victor Turner, Susan Stewart, and Aristotle. Following
the screening, the producer will distribute a lesson plan that accompanies
the video and offer perspectives for using video production to teach
secondary students to document and interpret local festivals. The
producer will also invite members of the audience to think about
ways to use video production to examine relationships between media,
genres, and cultural interpretation.
David Allen Harvey.
(Princeton University). Carnivals, Cabarets, and Charivaris: The
Transformation of Popular Culture in Nineteenth Century Alsace.
In early 19th
century Alsace, traditional forms of popular culture, such as Carnivals,
charivaris, and the popular "public sphere" of the cabaret,
combined with the rich array of symbols and practices that were
the legacy of the French Revolution to create a uniquely rich and
complex symbolic language for the expression of popular political
and economic power. Carnivalesque practices such as social inversion,
mockery, and the use of symbolic attire allowed workers and artisans
to free themselves from the hegemony of bourgeois industrial society
and to imagine and to enact a vision of a more egalitarian world.
(University of New Mexico). Men of Fire, Three Burning Rituals of
Renewal: Questions of Authenticity.
will expose the various claims to authenticity that three contemporary
effigy-burning rituals, and the festivals they attend to, may have.
I would hope that in discussing the politics of authenticity involved
with El Kookooee, Zozobra, and Burningman a deeper sense of the
meaning of authenticity itself, some of the many ways it might be
described, approached, or defined, will be revealed. Authenticity
itself is as widely defined as the sensibilities of those who define
it, consciously or unconsciously. Everyone comes to a conception
of authenticity with a different set of experiences, a particular
orietation to the world, and a unique knowledge base. However their
respective authenticities are compared, there exists a simple universal
ritual attraction to fire, fire as symbolic of spirit, fire as a
ceremonial renewing of the elemental spirit of life.
(State University of New York at Buffalo). Approaching the Bullfight
as Art, Ritual, and Performance: Theorizing Death in the Afternoon.
is productive of many conflicting interpretations. For non-Spaniards,
the bullfight is an iconic marker for an essentialized Spanish character.
Within Spain, bullfighting is often called la fiesta nacional. However,
Spanish affection for bullfighting is not monolithic, but cross-cut
by regional and ethnic difference. Some find bullfighting an authentic
ritual of a distinctly (if not primordially) Spanish identity. Others
view it is a barbaric anachronism which orientalizes Spain as Europe's
Other within. As public spectacle, bullfighting is a regulated,
formalized play "inherently dangerous" with death its
object. It fits imperfectly under such conventional categories as
sport, artform, performance, and ritual, yet most people believe
that it is, somehow or other, a culturally meaningful event. This
paper looks critically at the interpretive frames which lead common
people and scholars alike to invest the bullfight with such a diversity
of meanings. Many anthropologists have explored the bullfight as
a communicative ritual, carrying messages about gender, honor, and
control. However, matadors are not officiants. They are not concerned
with communicating symbolically, but with killing bulls. Rather
than constituting a ritual per se, the bullfight partakes of processes
of ritualization. The assessing role of the audience is crucial
to the construction of its meaning. In Spanish culture, the bullfight
is "a total esthetic fact." Audiences generate its meanings
metaphorically, projecting significance onto an activity which slips
uneasily along a continuum between ritual, performance, and theater,
but which is grounded in tragic reality. Recalling Walter Benjamin's
analysis of the movement of art objects between poles of cultic
(ritual) value and exhibitionary (esthetic) value, this paper suggests
that we can better understand the generativity of esthetic signifiers
(like the bullfight) through the discursive poetics of centering,
decentering, and recentering. "Meaning" then exists within
history and memorial experience, not within the signifier, and circulates
in social discourse.
Helen Hi-Sun Kim.
(The Ohio State University). Han and Etiquette in Korean Drinking.
Korean culture, alcohol was not only enjoyed for social occasions,
but also consumed during ancestral rites, planting and harvesting,
weddings, and other ceremonial occasions. Today, these traditions
are still apparent, and alcohol is still considered a vital part
of making and nurturing personal, business, and political relationships.
I will discuss the etiquette of Korean drinking customs, which are
an essential part of the cultural performance of alcohol consumption
and difficult for newcomers to master. Furthermore, I will explore
the relationship between these unique drinking customs and more
pervasive cultural concepts, especially the Korean notion of han.
Susan Applegate Krouse.
(Michigan State University). Circling Conflict: Traditional Iroquois
Socials in an Urban Indian Community.
The urban American
Indian community in Rochester, New York, is proud of the socials
it sponsors, which provide a place for Native people to come together
and participate in traditional Iroquois activities. The socials
are promoted as community events, but they are also sites of conflict
and contestation. The resolution of those conflicts serves to reinforce
the cultural values and to validate a social hierarchy that promotes
the maintenance of a specific Iroquois identity for this urban community.
Danille Christensen Lindquist.
(Indiana University). Identity, Industry, and the American Dream:
Fan Participation in Ohio State Football.
official discourse, regulations, and performances institutionalize
American nationalistic and industrial ideals such as teamwork, perseverance,
and achievement. But "spectators" are not passive pawns
in an industrial game: fans participate by embracing official symbols
and re-presenting them through their own rituals and behaviors.
In this study, "Buckeye" traditions like those associated
with the OSU Marching Band reinforce norms of national identity
and success--but they also originate within the populace and act
as markers of a distinct community identity. In Central Ohio, football
does more than sustain the "American Dream": it is a collective
expression of creativity, power and identity.
(The Ohio State University). A Chinese Folk Dance Performance in
the United States.
is based on my fieldwork on a Chinese folk dance performance on
the eve of Thanksgiving Day in 1998, in Columbus Ohio. I examine
questions such as "of what nature was this performance? can
this really be seen as a pure entertainment with no political interests
involved, as the organizer claimed?", "what has accounted
for the similar and different reactions on the part of the Eastern
and Western audiences" and, "is there a negotiating space
for the Eastern and Western cultures to converge?"
Lucy M Long.
(Bowling Green State University). To Dance Irish Video Screening
popularity of the commercially-produced and mass-mediated dance
show, Riverdance, has introduced traditional Irish dance to non-Irish
audiences throughout the world, drawing large numbers of students
to Irish dance schools. This video explores a recently established
school in the Midwest that is typical both of the Irish dance education
system and of the multicultural realities of contemporary Irish-American
ethnicity. The video presents the school as developing out of a
strong family tradition and the local Irish community. In examining
motivations for participation in this cultural art form, the video
acknowledges the importance for the participants in developing a
sense of community that transcends ethnic background. It also looks
at the competition system that ultimately structures the aesthetics
of the dance classes.
(Bowling Green State University). Family Thanksgiving Dinners: Rituals
of Intensification, Idealization, and Inversion.
as a celebration of national unity, Thanksgiving dinner is presented
in contemporary popular culture as a time of family unity. However,
the reality is often one of conflict and discord. While such conflicts
may be thought of as reflecting dysfunctional families, it is perhaps
more useful to acknowledge them as reflecting the power of food
to carry meaning, to communicate identity, and to affirm and construct
social relationships. During holiday meals, that power is intensified
and concentrated, so that through the ritualistic use of food, the
vision of the family can be negotiated within specific families
at specific times and places. This paper explores the ways in which
Thanksgiving dinner serves as a multifaceted ritual for the manipulation
of family structure and relationships as well as for the constructing
of the meaningfulness attached to the various aspects of foodways.
(Sewanee University). Clansmen of the New South: Masculinity and
Public Display in Scottish Heritage Celebration.
in Americans' ancestral ties to Scotland has spawned hundreds of
local and national clan societies. At a time when traditional ideals
of masculinity are challenged, these hierarchical societies honor
clan chiefs as unquestioned "father figures" and celebrate
the "unsensitive" males of Scotland's military history.
Especially in the South, militaristic themes shape public rituals
at Scottish heritage events. Stereotypical images of Scots as bag-piping,
kilted soldiers find masculine parallels in the gentlemen gallants
and colonel characters of southern myth. Soldierly male icons prominent
in southern and Scottish defeat-generated mythologics become isomorphic
in southern, Scottish heritage celebration.
Grant Jewell Rich.
(University of Chicago). Santa and His Merry Selfs: Impression Management
at Work and Play.
uses qualitative methods including interviews and observations to
explore how Santas construct and manage their identities on and
off the job. Previous research has examined how workers have presented
themselves socially while employed in stigmatized occupations such
as phone sex work (Rich 1998; Rich and Guidroz in press) and fast
food restaurants (Leidner 1991). The current paper shows that similar
techniques are employed by Santas while engaged in the socially
desirable work of fulfilling children's holiday wishes. Santas,
like those in stigmatized occupations such as phone sex or dance
hall music (Becker 1963; Goffman 1963), must also keep secret certain
aspects of identity. Nevertheless, on occasion, Santas are exposed
as real people, and must decide upon responses to intrusions upon
their performances. In this social construction of reality, Santa,
parents, and older children work together to keep the holiday magic
alive. How Santas maintain their illusion in the face of bratty
children, aching feet, bad days, and faulty white beards is the
focus of this paper.
Kathleen Glenister Roberts.
(Indiana University). Between Two Worlds: Function and Slippage
in Powwow Ritual Exchange.
As the powwow
becomes increasingly popular for some Native Americans and other
groups, its function also becomes increasingly context- and production-specific.
Some are always expressive, designed to call attention to "Nativeness"
through sign systems such as gift exchange. This paper explores
the convergence of exchange, sign, and speech in the specific ritual
context of the "giveaway." Ultimately, I argue that one
specific type of powwow invents a loosely-constructed liminal world
that seems especially vulnerable to slippage. I examine one giveaway
"master of ceremonies" as he breaks frame through violations
of formality rules put forth by Judith Irvine (1979).
(The Ohio State University). Shandong Yanxi: Cultural Functions
of the Banquet in the Shandong Context.
examines the "celebratory," ritualistic and pragmatic
functions that Shandong yanxi, or banquets, serve in games of gaining
social status in the contemporary Shandong social milieu. Yanxi
are a highly ritualized form of performance in which enormous amounts
of social capital, and energy are invested (Yang 1994). Shandong
yanxi are conducted to celebrate such important social occasions
as weddings and engagements; festivals; birthdays; sending a friend
or relative off on a journey, and welcoming a traveler home from
a journey (Seligman 1998). Although highly festive in nature, these
performances play a more serious and pragmatic role in Shandong
society as a field of play for the game of gaining social status.
Linda Marie Small.
Coloring and Celebrating Display: Ritual Resistance to the Disabled
Body as Cultural Text for Discrimination.
make you live right (Western Apache)," but are we listening
or merely seeing through stereotypes? Disability discrimination
is given its legitimacy through white cultural practices viewed
as normative in academia. Cast as imperfect, the individual with
disabilities becomes not scholar, but contested scholarly text.
The graduate student storyteller created pictured text of personal
pain: a coloring book of disability discrimination as experienced
within anthropology pedagogy. Drawing one's imperfect social body
in hues of celebratory display is ritual and resistance. Further
study on popular culture selection of social change agents is needed.
(UCLA). Performative Viewing and Public Spectacle: Experiencing
study of cinematic reception in India reveals that the meaning of
a film maybe elaborated and transformed by participatory and performative
viewing practices of its audiences. Viewers sing along with the
soundtrack, shout out to characters on-screen and dance in the theater.
The experience of cinema is brought outside the viewing setting
as theater exteriors are decorated to celebrate newly-released films
and audiences organize processions to felicitate stars. Cinema is
reconstructed as live theater, public spectacle and festival raising
important questions about audiences' relation to the cultural product
and revealing that the meaning and experience of cinema cannot be
captured through analyses which neglect the audience while focusing
on film content.
Beverly J Stoeltje.
(Indiana University). Keynote Address: The Beauty Pageant: Harnessing
or Liberating Female Power.
constitute modernity's female rites of initiation, a popular ritual
in which the concept of beauty serves to disguise the contradictions
surrounding the role of women in contemporary society. Like strip
shows, fashion shows, and debutante balls; beauty pageants place
women's bodies on display and define their functions in society.
Because they seem to be rituals of the imagination, attention is
deflected away from the flow of power through which women's identities
are negotiated. Focusing on power, however, permits us to discern
the processes through which popular rituals respond to changing
ideologies. Examining the evolution of the form, the organization
of production, the discourse which interprets the event, and the
performances themselves, reveals beauty pageants as a site where
modernity's deepest fissures are revealed and resolutions to contradictions
Joanne Raetz Stuttgen.
(Indiana University). Candy Canes at the Martinsville Candy Kitchen.
documents the process of traditional hand manufacture of candy canes
at the Martinsville, Indiana, Candy Kitchen, a Main Street landmark
since its opening by Greek immigrant, James Zapapas, in 1919. The
folkloric approach is framed by three historical contexts: the period
of Greek immigration to Indiana (1890-1920); the history of sugar
and candy; and the legend of the candy cane that makes it a religious
symbol. I argue that the candy cane, like the modem Christmas, is
a recent cultural phenomenon, dating to approximately 1850, and
that the legend is indicative of efforts to reinvest Christmas with
religious meaning--a meaning that has never really existed, according
to historians of the holiday.
Chad Ryan Thomas.
(Arizona State University). The Logic of Inducing Belief.
of religion must include both practices (rituals) and beliefs. Rituals
themselves are distinguished by a series of more or less stereotyped
behaviors, accompanied by a belief in the meaning of the behaviors.
Analytically, stereotyped behaviors are relatively easy to identify,
but beliefs are much more difficult. To be able to discuss ritual
effectively, there must be some epistemological warrant to say that
one can know what others believe. Without such warrant, using beliefs
to understand ritual has no logical grounding. By using techniques
of logical implication and set theory, the epistemological and ontological
issues surrounding the statement, "Person 1 knows that Person
2 believes A," are explored. It is concluded that knowing beliefs
in the technical sense is impossible, but inducing beliefs is logically
equivalent to inducing any other idea. Thus, it is possible to use
beliefs of others to understand their behavior in ritual contexts.
Jennifer Jo Kuhn Thompson.
(Indiana University). America's Wilderness Rites of Passage: Ritual
Efficacy in Daily Life.
will consider the wilderness rites of passage held within two multi-ethnic
spiritual communities in the Midwest. These events, in which an
individual experiences wilderness in solitude and emerges with a
transformed identity and purpose, are closely linked to Native American
traditions of vision quest and are guided by Native teachers. I
will explore how these wilderness rites of passage affect participants'
understandings of spirituality, humanity and nature, and how the
ritual elements of the event remain effective fri their daily lives.
(Bowling Green State University). Damn Right We're Mad!" Political
Debating in Newfoundland Country Music.
country music and the events where it is performed provide an important
voice for political criticism by outport Newfoundlanders. This exploration
of its musicological and cultural development, and of other artifacts
of popular culture, will aid in our understanding of this island's
politics and of the public obsession with the concept of Newfoundland's
(University of West Florida). Rituals and Rhetoric of the Lost Cause:
Remembering the Old Confederacy in the New South.
examines three of the most conspicuous rituals of the Lost Cause
phenomenon: Confederate Memorial Day, Confederate Monument dedications,
and Confederate Veterans' reunions. Much of the analysis focuses
on the speeches delivered at these various ritualistic events so
popular and so important in the post-Civil War South. These rituals
of a century and more ago were substantial reasons why the Old South
passed away so slowly and why, even in the 1990s, remnants of that
era are easily found in the most recent incarnation of the New South.
Luise van Keuren.
(Green Mountain College). Growing Up Dutch in Early America: The
Festival of Childhood Ritual.
to dour images of Early America, childhood in Dutch-influenced New
York was rich with merriment and festival. Children in Albany were
organized into "companies," as they called them, from
about age five through their teens. Among the annual rituals in
these social units were berry-picking and birthday excursions. Holidays
included May Day, Kermis and St. Martin's Eve. Young men marked
the passage to adulthood with a ritual trapping trip into the wilderness
and then relinquished the lark of hog stealing and the passion for
winter sledding on Main Street.
(Air Force Institute of Technology). The Air Show as Ritual Festival.
Air shows are
a 20th century phenomenon. Since the first air shows were held in
Europe and America in 1908 and 1909, they have consistently offered
spectators the latest visions of flight technology and aerial activities.
But they also have fulfilled the basic criteria of all public festivals:
education, entertainment, and celebration. Like the earliest cultural
festivals, they are linked to annual calendar dates and display
a variety of ritual characteristics. This presentation describes
the basic activities of air shows and explores the ways in which
these activities share the characteristics of ritual festivals.
(Bowling Green State University). Crossing the Pettus Bridge: Transformation,
asserts that a commemoration confirms an occasion of transformative
power. Utilizing a public display approach, I will examine how civil
rights activists have transformed, confirmed and commemorated themselves
and their actions via various attempts to cross the Edmund Pettus
Bridge in Selma, Alabama. I will specifically address the events
known as "Bloody Sunday," "Turnaround Tuesday,"
and the "Selma to Montgomery March." I will also discuss
the annual commemoration in Selma known as the "Bridge Crossing
Jubilee," which emphasizes what its name proclaims: the bridge
crossing (i.e. the community's domination of the physical site).
Phyllis Watts and Miriam
Fankhauser. (Tiffin University).
Tecumseh, Blue Jacket, and Unto These Hills: Sociocultural Analysis
of Three Outdoor Dramas.
through a sociohistorical comparison and contrast methodology examines
the issues of genre, historical accuracy of the story line versus
editorial license taken by the authors/directors, land ownership
and the defense thereof, the cultural values of honor and truth,
and the use of-humor and spirituality to examine the encounters
experienced between indigenous people and the westward moving white
pioneers as depicted within these outdoor dramas.
(University of Montevallo). The 1621 Harvest Festival: Tracing the
Story of a Thanksgiving Myth.
records show a changing interpretation of the origins of thanksgiving:
first a holy day; then, a national holiday; and more recently, a
harvest festival. Extant sources of the 1621 harvest festival indicate
that it was a week-long event in which the Indians joined the colonists
for three days of gunplay and other militaristic endeavors. The
word "thanks" does not appear in any contemporary account.
Today the relation is taken for granted, although it was not until
1939 that it. appears in a national proclamation. Tracing the origins
of such a "myth" reveals changes in American self-identity.
(The Ohio State University). Chinese Evening Party as Cultural Performance:
Fieldwork in the Chinese Community in Columbus, Ohio.
This paper is an analytical report on a fieldwork
done on an evening party, or lianhuan wanhui that was held in Columbus,
Ohio, within a Chinese community. The party was organized to celebrate
the National Day and the traditional Mid-Autumn Festival. In the
paper, lianhuan wanhui is first discussed as a cultural performance
with the aid of the concept of "cultural performance"
proposed by Singer (1959) and the performance approach developed
by a group of folklorists. Then, lianhuan wanhui is seen through
the lens of entertainment and the author proposes that it is a special
genre of entertainment.