By Mary Edmunds
This booklet is a narrative. It’s a narrative approximately traditional humans in very diversified components of the area facing speedy swap within the past due 20th and early twenty-first centuries. It’s approximately occasions of turbulent and violent social upheaval and rupture with the prior. It’s approximately smooth instances. It’s additionally approximately being human; what it truly is to be human in a modernising and globalising global; how, in responding to the conditions in their occasions, varied teams outline, redefine, and try to placed into perform their understandings of the nice and of what constitutes an exceptional lifestyles. And it’s approximately how human rights have turn out to be now not summary common rules yet a realistic resource of realization and perform for genuine humans. Drawing at the author’s event as an anthropologist, the e-book examines diverse teams during the last 3 many years of the 20th century and the 1st years of the twenty-first: Thai manufacturing facility employees over a interval of 2 coups within the Seventies; Spanish nuns within the Eighties, within the aftermath of the second one Vatican Council and the top of the Franco dictatorship; Aboriginal humans within the distant Pilbara quarter of Western Australia facing the influence of past due colonialism and strikes in the direction of self-determination, from the Eighties to the current. each one of those teams has its personal tales, illuminating ways that, regardless of the attack of modernisation on deeply held conventional ideals and practices, specific cultural understandings and practices proceed to form people’s responses to their novel conditions. The very variety of the experiences awarded within the booklet increases the most compelling ethical and social questions of our time and invitations the reader, either educational and lay, to target what it's that makes us human; no matter if there are human universals in addition to cultural particularities; even if human rights supply common norms and practices; what unites in addition to divides us; and the place morality, and understandings of an outstanding lifestyles, could be sourced in a mundane sleek global. “This is a e-book approximately desire, the desire that we've got how you can dwell jointly in a quickly altering global so one can allow us to ‘live an excellent lifestyles within the smooth world.’” Hon. Fred Chaney AO.** [C:\Users\Microsoft\Documents\Calibre Library]
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Extra resources for A Good Life: Human Rights and Encounters With Modernity
26 1. Culture, morality, modernity, and the transformation of social imaginaries In each case, the ways in which these particular groups have responded to modernisation are culturally shaped, though not culturally bounded. The moments of acceptance or rejection of themselves indicate the permeability of cultural boundaries, suggesting some areas of existing or possible common understanding, while areas of conflict identify points of greater or lesser contradiction or incompatibility. Within this range of differences, I include an examination of attempts by these various groups to accommodate and, in some instances, appropriate the new.
41 Bourdieu (1979: 18). 42 ibid. 33 A Good Life: Human rights and encounters with modernity anthropologist to examine the commonalities and the differences in the ways in which they experience it. It is in attending to the changing situations in which we find people today that we can hope to understand both the pervasiveness and the contingency of culture, together with its inherent contradictions and conflicts. 43 In undertaking the anthropological task, I cannot ignore the question, most eloquently posed by Said in Orientalism,44 of the representation of the Other.
My assumption is that, by examining the various ways in which different groups respond to and invest meaning in their new situations, we can learn something important, not just about each particular group, but about what humans have in common and about the human condition. More immediately, one of my aims in this book is, by looking at a range of different social groups in the process of encountering modernity, to throw some light on the urgent social issues of the early twenty-first century. Many of the issues arising from globalisation that we now confront can be better understood through the lens of the modernising processes that have taken place in the second half of the twentieth century.