search the archive
search the archive
An Anthropology of Exchange: The Market Model of Human Society (May 19-21, 2011)
full name / name of organization:
Generative Anthropology Society and Conference
Generative Anthropology, which hypothesizes that human culture originated in the exchange of linguistic signs, offers keen insights into the powers and pitfalls of that most human of institutions: the market. Eric Gans, who in his books Science and Faith (1990), Originary Thinking (1993), Signs of Paradox (1997) and The Scenic Imagination (2007) has modeled this new way of thinking about the human, has proposed: “The exchange of goods and related values in the marketplace is complemented by the exchange of representations in the cultural sphere.” There is an essential link, in other words, between linguistic and material exchange, giving the market a peculiarly troubled reputation in contemporary academic and critical discourse: though the market originated in the free exchange of signs, the increasing materialization of exchange and the institutionalization of value-based competition make the market a contested space, arousing and then attempting to recycle mimetic desire and resentment.
Proposals for papers deploying, developing, critiquing or otherwise engaging with Generative Anthropology and its theory of the market are invited. Possible topics include:
the anthropology and esthetics of advertising
the politics and ethics of commercial art
ancient roots of modern market institutions
For an introduction to GA, examples of applications of the theory to literature, cultural studies, religious studies, and philosophy, and a GA bibliography, please visit the online journal Anthropoetics (www.anthropoetics.ucla.edu). Excellent descriptions of GA and additional examples of the range and interpretive power of GA can also be found in The Originary Hypothesis: A Minimal Proposal for Humanistic Inquiry (2007), ed. Adam Katz.
Abstracts for papers of 20 to 25 minutes should be sent by attachment in MS-Word to Professor Matthew Schneider at firstname.lastname@example.org. Deadline: March 1, 2010.