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Indeterminacy: Waste, Value, and the Imagination

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Series
Volume 7

WYSE Series in Social Anthropology



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Indeterminacy

Waste, Value, and the Imagination

Edited by Catherine Alexander and Andrew Sanchez

Afterword by Niko Besnier and Susana Narotzky

230 pages, 16 illus., bibliog., index

ISBN  978-1-78920-009-6 $120.00/£85.00 Hb Not Yet Published (October 2018)

eISBN 978-1-78920-010-2 eBook Not Yet Published


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Reviews

“An excellent topic. What I liked in particular was the sense of cohesion… The authors have addressed situations that speak to each other.” • Bjørn Thomassen, Roskilde University

Description

What happens to people, places and objects that do not fit the ordering regimes and progressive narratives of modernity? Conventional understandings imply that progress leaves such things behind, and excludes them as though they were valueless waste. This volume uses the concept of indeterminacy to explore how conditions of exclusion and abandonment may give rise to new values, as well as to states of despair and alienation. Drawing upon ethnographic research about a wide variety of contexts, the chapters here explore how indeterminacy is created and experienced in relationship to projects of classification and progress.

Catherine Alexander is Professor of Anthropology at Durham University. Before her current appointment, she worked at Goldsmiths for ten years. She has published widely on wastes and recycling – including Economies of Recycling, co-edited with Joshua Reno (Zed Books, 2012) – as well as economic and urban anthropology.

Andrew Sanchez is Lecturer in Social Anthropology at the University of Cambridge. He has published widely on economy and labor, and is the author of Criminal Capital: Violence, Corruption and Class in Industrial India (Routledge, 2015).

Subject: General Anthropology Sociology Political Economy



Contents

List of Figures

Introduction: The Values of Indeterminacy
Catherine Alexander and Andrew Sanchez

Chapter 1. Kept in Suspense: the Unsettling Indeterminacy of U.S. Landfills
Joshua O. Reno

Chapter 2. Experiments in Living: the Value of Indeterminacy in Trans art
Elena Gonzalez-Polledo

Chapter 3. The Production of Indeterminacy: on the Unforeseeable Futures of post-Industrial Excess
Felix Ringel

Chapter 4. Human Waste in the Land of Abundance: Two Kinds of Gypsy Indeterminacy in Norway
Thomas Hylland Eriksen and Cathrine Moe Thorleiffson

Chapter 5. Waste People / Value producers: Ambiguity, Indeterminacy and post-socialist Russian-speaking miners
Eeva Kesküla

Chapter 6. Indeterminate classifications: being ‘more than kin’ in Kazakhstan
Catherine Alexander

Chapter 7. The Politics of Indeterminacy: Boundary Dislocations around waste, Value and Work in Subic Bay (Philippines)
Elisabeth Schober

Afterword
Niko Besnier and Susana Narotzky
 

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