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Art as Politics: Re-crafting Identities, Tourism, and Power in Tana Toraja, Indonesia - Southeast Asia: Politics, Meaning and Memory (Hardback)Kathleen M. Adams (author)
Hardback 304 Pages / Published: 30/08/2006
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Art as Politics explores the intersection of art, identity politics, and tourism in Sulawesi, Indonesia. Based on long-term ethnographic research from the 1980s to the present, the book offers a nuanced portrayal of the Sa'dan Toraja, a predominantly Christian minority group in the world's most populous Muslim country. Celebrated in anthropological and tourism literatures for their spectacular traditional houses, sculpted effigies of the dead, and pageantry-filled funeral rituals, the Toraja have entered an era of accelerated engagement with the global economy marked by on-going struggles over identity, religion, and social relations. In her engaging account, Kathleen Adams chronicles how various Toraja individuals and groups have drawn upon artistically-embellished ""traditional"" objects - as well as monumental displays, museums, UNESCO ideas about ""word heritage,"" and the World Wide Web - to shore up or realign aspects of a cultural heritage perceived to be under threat. She also considers how outsiders - be they tourists, art collectors, members of rival ethnic groups, or government officials - have appropriated and reframed Toraja art objects for their own purposes. Her account illustrates how art can serve as a catalyst in identity politics, especially in the context of tourism and social upheaval. Ultimately, this insightful work prompts readers to rethink persistent and pernicious popular assumptions - that tourism invariably brings a loss of agency to local communities or that tourist art is a compromised form of expression. ""Art as Politics"" promises to be a favorite with students and scholars of anthropology, sociology, cultural studies, ethnic relations, art, and Asian studies.
Publisher: University of Hawai'i Press
Number of pages: 304
Weight: 816 g
Dimensions: 229 x 152 x 25 mm
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