Mary Douglas's Purity and Danger

Mary Douglas's Purity and Danger : An analysis of the concepts of pollution and taboo

By (author) 

Free delivery worldwide

Available. Dispatched from the UK in 4 business days
When will my order arrive?

Description

Mary Douglas is an outstanding example of an evaluative thinker at work. In Purity and Danger: An Analysis of Concepts of Pollution and Taboo, she delves in great detail into existing arguments that portray traditional societies as "evolving" from "savage" beliefs in magic, to religion, to modern science, then explains why she believes those arguments are wrong. She also adeptly chaperones readers through a vast amount of data, from firsthand research in the Congo to close readings of the Old Testament, and analyzes it in depth to provide evidence that traditional and Western religions have more in common than the first comparative religion scholars and early anthropologists thought.


First evaluating her scholarly predecessors by marshalling their arguments, Douglas identifies their main weakness: that they dismiss traditional societies and their religions by identifying their practices as "magic," thereby creating a chasm between savages who believe in magic and sophisticates who practice religion.
show more

Product details

  • Paperback | 127 pages
  • 133 x 197 x 6.86mm | 136g
  • London, United Kingdom
  • English
  • 1912284634
  • 9781912284634
  • 775,717

Table of contents

Ways in to the Text


Who Was Mary Douglas?


What Does Purity and Danger Say?


Why Does Purity and Danger Matter?


Section 1: Influences


Module 1: The Author and the historical Context


Module 2: Academic Context


Module 3: The Problem


Module 4: The Author's Contribution


Section 2: Ideas


Module 5: Main Ideas


Module 6: Secondary Ideas


Module 7: Achievement


Module 8: Place in the Author's Work


Section 3: Impact


Module 9: The First Responses


Module 10: The Evolving Debate


Module 11: Impact and Influence Today


Module 12: Where Next?


Glossary of Terms


People Mentioned in the Text


Works Cited
show more

About Padraig Belton

Padraig Belton undertook his doctoral research in politics and international relations at the University of Oxford. A prolific financia, business and political journalist, his work has appeared in publications including the Irish Times, the Guardian, Telegraph, Independent, the Irish Independent, the Atlantic, the New Statesman, Prospect, the Times Literary Supplement, and Foreign Policy.
show more