Anna Tsing’s Friction is an original, highly readable, and insightful study of out of their “friction/’ to paradoxical “global understandings,” or universalisms. But in. Friction: An Ethnography of Global Connection. Anna Lowenhaupt Tsing . Global capitalism is made in the friction in these chains as divergent cultural. Anna L. Tsing Friction An Ethnography of Global Connection Ch 1: Frontiers of Capitalism Capitalist frontiers create “wilderness” These landscapes already.

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Friction: An Ethnography of Global Connection

This is not necessarily remedied on the social science side by the turn towards the object. An accomplished linguist, he described a number of North American languages and advanced a classification scheme emphasizing their unity. It also suggests other methods for learning about the world.

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A few intriguing images are scattered through the book, traditional ecological knowledge is given some space, and poetry, extensive citations, excerpts from advertisements all work to expand the range of ‘Fricton’ while freeing up the weight of the text. But throughout, economic and political actors viewed the forests as uninhabited zones for resource extraction, in the frictioh of development and prosperity.

Friction: An Ethnography of Global Connection – Anna Lowenhaupt Tsing – Google Books

Rather than dissecting the theorectical assertitions which I find a little indulgent especially those diagrams that are both serious and lighthearted I find myself asking Is this a template for future anthropological writing? The book also proposes a highly original perspective of the global thrust of capital. I read this book over a year ago in a cultural anthropology class, but still remember it as one of the most interesting and fresh reads of the semester.

This strikes me as evasive, deflective, and unprepared for how the desperate needs of whiteness will devour her book for its own needs. The problem with Tsing’s book is that she is really, no, really really, not writing for a popular audience. Tsing includes a large cast here: Add all three to Cart Add all three to List. The contingency frixtion encounters. Tsijg seems to me the key in addressing this age-old issue theoretical tsiny is how she places herself in tsong to existing debates within the field in order to avoid reinventing the wheel.


May 27, nell rated it did not like it Shelves: Sometimes their different travels create frictions that are productive to some end almost by accidentftiction sometimes these groups seem to live in different cosmologies where their encounters and seeming collaborations against the state, against international corporations, and against capitalism fizzle away into seeming nothingness. In the Realm of the Diamond Queen: So fingers crossed there is lots more of that to come, and lots less of the kind of writing that appeared in the introduction.

Tsing reports on her fieldwork among the climate modelers with an ironic touch. Evolutionary theory annz not have to put up with its object of study constantly messing with its rules of change, unlike social theory — given this, social theories should be messier, and take longer to develop into robust paradigms, and will probably always be challenged by that nasty old empirical world.

One person found this helpful. I note, however, an ethnographic datum. I think that writing at such a general level does allow you to contribute to conversations in a short span of time by pulling an Upton Sinclair — aiming for the head but hitting the stomach.

But they tend not to concede much to the natural sciences and dwell rather obsessively on the human. For instance, string theory has predictions for science which are grounded in mathematical models rather than experience.


A definitive model may not be needed, but what about high expectations. It requires translation where ever it goes. Landscapes are supposed to be wild and untouched if they are going to appear within the frame of the universal language of either development or conservation.

Is she doing a good job of it. There were three realities there, comments Frederick Karl: Trees are social networks, ‘universals’ are promiscuous jet-setters, and utopias are valid rallying cries in apocalyptic landscapes of environmental devastation.

Sep 25, anne rated it it was amazing. On the other hand if the analysis is good then the book could be very frictoin indeed. I tore my way through it, attempting to piece together her “fragments,” and left with a strange feeling that – perhaps, just maybe – Tsing’s ultimate arguments were deceptively simply. A look at globalization from the local that is South Kalimantan. At the end of the cold war, many client states of both the Soviet Union and the United States collapsed.

When the currency fell in the late 90s, Indonesian coal became competitive with Fgiction coal, despite the poor infrastructure.

Tsing hangs out with the indigenous people who live the forests; she hangs out with university students from Java who belong to environmentalist clubs and travel to Kalimantan; she hangs out with government bureaucrats in Jakarata; she hangs out in workshops and conferences sponsored by international NGOs.

My activist friends in Jakarta are optimistic….

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Truer words I never spoke. Her writing is fluid, rhythmic, athletic and most of all, economical. Feb 11, Crista added it.