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which the Balinese perceive and define individuals and society. None of the anthropologists who have worked in Israel (including not a few non-Israelis and non-Jews) has ever attempted such a task. Has this engaged an- thropologist, with her loves and aversions, succeeded in it? Having chosen to approach her project "outside the boundaries of structured anthropological fieldwork" (p.

153), Dominguez ultimately concentrates on a few


sues, terms, events, attitudes, and discourses from which she attempts to extract the essence of Israeli self- hood and peoplehood. The method she adopts is remote from that employed in most ethnographies. Articles in Israel's English-language daily The Jerusalem Post, in particular, but also other newspapers and a weekly mag- azine form a main source of data. Public lectures and discussions, performances, radio programs, and occa­ sional meetings with friends and their friends provide the observational dimension of the study. Major subjects for content analysis inhabit the chapters that evolve from the public debates concerning the Jewishness of Ethiopian immigrants, the relationship between tarbut

(culture) and moreshet

(heritage) in public discourse as

evidence of continued Ashkenazi paternalism toward Sephardim, the manifestations and interpretation of adatiut (theIsraeli term for Jewish and often non-Jewish ethnicity), and the Israelis' own representationlob­ jectification of Jews, Arabs, "goyim," and others. An­ other chapter examines the collective expression and reaffirmation of Israeli society in the ritual domain. Dominguez observes (mainly through the press) what she had expected to represent the major ritual of a new nation, the celebration of Yom Ha'atzma'ut (Israeli Inde- pendence Day), and is impressed primarily by those facets of it that suggest the uncertainty and scarcity of institutionalized ritual. At the same time, she neglects the better-rehearsed and more institutionalized facets of the preceding day, Remembrance Day, the opening cele- bration at the end of that day (see Handelman n.d.), and

the widespread practice of picnicking on Yom Ha'atz- ma'ut. I am not challenging Dominguez's evaluation of cer- tain traits and phenomena in Israeli public discourse; on the contrary, I agree with much of it. The book offers insight on various issues concerning Israelis and Jews. At the same time, however, I feel that it fails to capture Israeli selfhood and peoplehood. The major problem is its reliance on official and public discourse and on the author's personal experiences, revelations, and contem- plations at the expense of disciplined observations aimed at discovering and interpreting experiences, be- havior, beliefs, and moods shared by the people under study. Dominguez overlooks, for example, a new ap­ proach in the study of Israeli representation that concen- trates on observations of manifest sentiments and daily

modes of expression (e.g., Katriel 1986). The


of theoretical support from a wide variety of social sci-

ences and the discursive style of presentation further remove the text from the traditional genre of ethno- graphic writing. Except for the writer's personal engage-

ment, the text could be attributed to a sociologist or a political scientist. The method and style have, however, been deliberately chosen, and the results reflect the on- going search by anthropologists for new means and meanings in ethnographic writing. The effort invested in that search may help reformulate our future models and paradigms.

References Cited


R. 1946 The chrysanthemum and the sword: Pat-

terns of Iapanese culture. Boston: Houghton Mifflin.

GEERTZ, C. 1973 (1966)."Person, time, and conduct in Bali," in

The interpretation of cultures, pp. 360-411.

New York: Basic



D. n.d. "State ceremonies of Israel: Remembrance

Day and Independence Day," in Models and mirrors: Towards

an anthropology of public events, pp. 191-233. Cambridge:

Cambridge University Press. In press.


T. 1986. Talking straight: Dugri speech in Israeli sabra

culture. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.

SHOKEID, M. 1989. From the anthropologist's point of view:

Studying one's own tribe. Anthropology and Humanism Quar-

terly 4(1):23-28.

Heroes and Villains in the Capture of "Primitive Art"


Pitt-Rivers Museum, Oxford, England.

5 IV go

Primitive Art in Civilized Places. By Sally Price. Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1989. 147 pp.


Primitive Art in Civilized Places doesn't quite live up to the expectations created by its wonderfully ironic title. Its brevity is part of the problem; Price cannot do justice to the complexities of the topic she has chosen in the space that she allows for it. It is certainly, however, a book that cries out to be read, as an essay rather than as an exhaustive study of its subject, and so read it is well written, thought-provoking, at times controversial, and thoroughly opinionated. It makes excellent serious read- ing for a journey and will be extremely useful in making students aware of the complexities of the issues in- volved in the exhibition of, and appreciation of, non- Western art. The book is about the ways in which "primitive art" has been captured for its release to Western audiences and the various distortions and misconceptions that that process has involved. Price covers most aspects of the process, from writing to collecting to exhibiting, and she directs a well-aimed salvo at the crude themlus division that the idea of primitive art implies and has helped to reproduce. Hers is a book of heroes and villains, a collo- cation of preconceptions and stereotypes: on the one side Edmund Carpenter, Raymond Firth, Pierre Bour- dieu, cultural relativists, and possibly people who dress


sent may involve a process of acculturation that leaves the idea of producing "primitive" art far behind, or the individual's cultural trajectory may be shaped by a wish to produce works of art that will end up in Western galleries. The cultural relativism that guides the writing of this book blocks such questions, and it perpetuates the themlus distinctions that make thinking about them so difficult. Indeed the real issue, and the one that will enable people to avoid being defined by the West as particular kinds of producers of particular kinds of ob- jects, may be the eradication of the erroneous category of "primitive art" itself. Price has set out to be provocative, to provide no tidy answers but to address many issues, and she has cer- tainly succeeded in that. She deliberately shifts between an academic and a popular mode, and although that can be a recipe for fudging and not fully developing argu- ments it has made for a very readable book that in- troduces new and relevant issues on almost every page.

References Cited

APPADURAI, A. 1986. The social life of things. Cambridge: Cam-

bridge University Press. MADDOCK, K. 1972. The Australian Aborigines: A portrait of their society. London: Allen Lane Press.

Language and Hierarchy


Department of Human Sciences, Brunel University, Uxbridge, Middlesex UB8 3PH, England. 4 v 90

Dominant Languages: Language and Hierarchy in

Britain and France. By R. D. Grillo. Cambridge and New York: Cambridge University Press, 1989.

Where anything to do with language is concerned, 200 years of nationalism have drawn for us an enduring con- ceptual map. Every country has its language. In Europe and North America, we all know that. Moreover, a true nation's language is not a mere lingua franca, which is something that newer countries have. Rather, it is who and what we are. Two centuries of nationalism, which have spawned and empowered such beliefs, have also driven the lin- guistic labours necessary for the construction or inven- tion of the languages which have been required to bear the moral loads of national self-definition. Within na- tional boundaries, forms of speech outside the standard inevitably become, by definition, either barbarous or in- herently deficient. Such has been the lasting legacy of nationalism and linguistics. It looked as if there might be a challenge to such ideas when sociolinguistics emerged with force in the 1960s. However, this new lin- guistics continued to work with many of the old fictions of "language," merely revaluing the regional or periph- eral and the lower-class. As the map of world power

changed, all languages became, in sociolinguistic theory, equal. In practice, of course, they are not. The periphery is not the centre and the lower class is not the dominant class, and none has a "language" outside these relations to which appeals of "equality" can be made. Grillo's Dominant Languages trails only a little of the more earnest idealism of post-1960s sociolinguistic rel- ativism and has the great merit of trying seriously to examine just how some forms of speech became domi- nant and others deemed inferior and deficient. The au- thor traces the history of many of the ideas about lan- guage which are deeply entrenched in two of Europe's oldest nations-Britain and France. This, it is hoped, will then enable us to understand "the distribution through the social hierarchy and the power structure of what are usually thought of as several kinds of speech" (p. 12). Dominant Languages is an ambitious and im- pressive book. The eleven chapters deal with language, nation, and nationalisms in Britain and France (chaps. s), with questions of immigrants and language in these two countries (chaps. 6 and 7), with the relationships between language and class in the two nations (chaps. 8- IO),and finally with the "elaborated-formal" discourses now deemed to exist internationally in "any type of 'complex' industrial-scientific-bureaucratic" social or- der (p. 220). By far the most interesting, convincing, and well- informed sections of the book are those dealing with immigrants and language and those dealing with lan-

guage and class (i.e., chaps.

6-10). Grillo puts together a

very useful compendium of discussion and references on those two issues and then makes his own part-national- ist plea for "the legitimacy of heteogeneity" (p. 128).He argues that support for immigrants' languages in the education system, which both Britain and France now practise to some extent, does not lead to the kind of "pluralistic integration" which he, following others, would seek; consideration of "immigrants' communica- tive competence" in the dominant language is also es- sential. Part of this consideration, however, should in- volve reflection on the dominant language-speakers' own assumptions about language. As Grillo points out:

"In East African cities many languages are spoken as a matter of course, and people do not make as heavy weather as we do of trying to understand someone else speaking their language. The decoding of other people's discourse, a task which we [the British] and the French find so difficult, may be less of a problem than we think"

(P 50).

The "problem" of foreign and immigrant languages is clearly tied in with the development of national lan- guages, which Grillo discusses in earlier chapters, and with the development of "standard" and "cultivated" forms of these languages, which he goes on to consider in more detail in relation to social class. The chapters dealing with class and language difference contain a masterly review of the literature on this topic, including a clear outline of the theories of Basil Bernstein that goes a long way towards disentangling some of the confusion and misunderstanding generated in the I 970s and I 980s

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