Irony in Action Anthropology, Practice, and the Moral Imagination
Irony today extends beyond its classification as a figure of speech and is increasingly recognized as one of the major modes of human experience. This idea of irony as an integral force in social life is at the center of this provocative book. The More...
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Irony today extends beyond its classification as a figure of speech and is increasingly recognized as one of the major modes of human experience. This idea of irony as an integral force in social life is at the center of this provocative book. The result of a meeting where anthropologists were invited to explore the politics of irony and the moral responsibilities that accompany its recognition, this book is one of the first to lend an anthropological perspective to this contemporary phenomenon. The first group of essays explores the limits to irony's liberating qualities from the constrained use of irony in congressional hearings to its reactive presence amid widening disparities of wealth despite decades of world development. The second section presents irony's more positive dimensions through an array of examples such as the use of irony by Chinese writers and Irish humorists. Framed by the editors' theoretical introduction to the issues posed by irony and responses to the essays by two literary scholars, Irony in Action is a timely contribution in the contemporary reinvention of anthropology.
|Preface and Acknowledgments|
|Introduction: The Anthropology of Irony|
|The Constrained Use of Irony in U.S. Congressional Hearings on Immigration|
|Irony and Power: Toward a Politics of Mockery in Greece|
|The Irony of Complicity and the Complicity of Irony in Development Discourse|
|What Makes the Anthropologist Laugh?: The Abelam, Irony, and Me|
|Kenneth Burke's "True Irony": One Model for Ethnography, Still|
|An Apollonian Response|
|Wine in the Writing, Truth in the Rhetoric: Three Levels of Irony in a Chinese Essay Genre|
|"Paddy's Pig":Irony and Self-Irony in Irish Culture|
|Irony and Paradox in the "Contact Zone": Missionary Discourse in Northern Papua New Guuinea|
|The Predicament of Irony and the Paranoid Style in Fin-de-Siegrave;cle Rationality|
|The Last Discussant|
|Coda: Irony, Practice, and the Moral Imagination|
|List of Contributors|