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Art and agency : an anthropological theory
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Location
  • KONST - Iaa
Main Entry - Personal Name
Title Statement
  • Art and agency : an anthropological theory
Publication, Distribution, etc. (Imprint)
  • Clarendon, Oxford : 1998
  • 1998
  • Språk: Engelska.
Dewey Decimal Classification Number
SAB Classification Code
Physical Description
  • xxiii, 271 s. : ill. ; 23 cm
Bibliography, etc. Note
  • S. 259-264: Bibliografi, index
Subject - Topical Term
Subject - SAB Headings
  • Etnografi Socialantropologi Etnologi Allmänt Teori Filosofi
  • Konst Konsthistoria Folkkonst
ISBN
  • 0-19-828013-0 (inb.)
  • 0-19-828014-9 (hft.)
  • 978-0-19-828014-9
Waiting
  • 0 (0)
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Alfred Gell puts forward a new anthropological theory of visual art, seen as a form of instrumental action: the making of things as a means of influencing the thoughts and actions of others. He argues that existing anthropological and aesthetic theories take an overwhelmingly passive point ofview, and questions the criteria that accord art status only to a certain class of objects and not to others. The anthropology of art is here reformulated as the anthropology of a category of action: Gell shows how art objects embody complex intentionalities and mediate social agency. He exploresthe psychology of patterns and perceptions, art and personhood, the control of knowledge, and the interpretation of meaning, drawing upon a diversity of artistic traditions--European, Indian, Polynesian, Melanesian, and Australian. Art and Agency was completed just before Alfred Gell's death at theage of 51 in January 1997. It embodies the intellectual bravura, lively wit, vigour, and erudition for which he was admired, and will stand as an enduring testament to one of the most gifted anthropologists of his generation.

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