Ethnography, Communities, Laments
Wilce draws our attention to the formulaic nature of anthropologists ethnographies, both considered as a distinctive genre and as inflected by larger modernist discourses of destruction and loss (which he terms neolament). His intriguing discussion of the laments that end many anthropological texts helped me to recognize similar laments that I heard when I conducted interviews in the Piedmont region of North Carolina. The latter examples raise issues about the politics of lamenting modernity and questions about what makes a lament effective.
© 2006 University of Chicago Press
Strauss, Claudia. "Comment." Current Anthropology, Vol. 47, No. 6 (December 2006): 907-908.