All societies are shaped by arts, media, and other persuasive practices that can awe, captivate, enchant or otherwise seem to cast a spell on the audience. Likewise, scholarship itself often is driven by a sense of wonder and a willingness to be open to what lies beyond the obvious. This book broadens and deepens this perspective. Inspired by Stephen Tyler's view of ethnography as an art of evocation, international scholars from the fields of aesthetics, anthropology, and rhetoric explore the spellbinding power of elusive meanings as people experience them in daily life and while gazing at works of art, watching films or studying other cultures. The book is divided into three parts covering the evocative power of visual art, the immersion in ritual and performance, and the reading, writing, and interpretation of texts. Taken as a whole, the contributions to the book demonstrate how astonishment and evocation deserve an important place in the conceptual repertoire of the human sciences.
Astonishment and Evocation
The Spell of Culture in Art and Anthropology