Minerals, Collecting, and Value across the US-Mexico Border

Minerals, Collecting, and Value across the US-Mexico Border

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Elizabeth Emma Ferry traces the movement of minerals as they circulate from Mexican mines to markets, museums, and private collections on both sides of the US-Mexico border. She describes how and why these byproducts of ore mining come to be valued by people in various walks of life as scientific specimens, religious offerings, works of art, and luxury collectibles. The story of mineral exploration and trade defines a variegated transnational space, shedding new light on the complex relationship between these two countries and on the process of making value itself.
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Product details

  • Paperback | 252 pages
  • 152.4 x 231.14 x 17.78mm | 340.19g
  • Bloomington, IN, United States
  • English
  • 27 b&w illus.
  • 0253009367
  • 9780253009364

Table of contents

Introduction: Making Value and U.S.-Mexican Space
1. Histories, Mineralogies, Economies
2. Shifting Stones: Mineralogy and Mineral Collecting in Mexico and the United States
3. Making Scientific Value
4. Mineral Collections and Their Minerals: Building Up U.S.-Mexican Transnational Spaces
5. Making Places in Space: Miners and Collectors in Guanajuato and Tucson
6. Mineral Marketplaces, Arbitrage, and the Production of Difference
Appendix: Sources and Methods
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Review quote

Ferry is primarily concerned with three fields in which minerals are valued: ore mining, mineral collecting, and mineralogy. As any respectable ethnographer, she aims to understand the intimate bond between the human and the object (in this case, the mineral) and how meaning is attached to it, value created, and value given or taken away. . . [A] jewel to those interested in ore mining, mineral collecting and mineralogy, or the anthropology of value.May 2015 * American Ethnologist * Students with little knowledge of the topic as well as scholars in this area will enjoy this book, part of the 'Tracking Globalization' series. . . . Highly recommended. * Choice * Minerals, Collecting, and Value makes a novel contribution to the anthropology of natural resources by weaving together theories of value and concepts from actor network theory to historicize the formation of U.S.-Mexico as a transnational space. * Journal of Latin American and Caribbean Anthropology *
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About Elizabeth Emma Ferry

Elizabeth Emma Ferry is Associate Professor of Anthropology at Brandeis University. She is author of Not Ours Alone: Patrimony, Value, and Collectivity in Contemporary Mexico and editor (with Mandana Limbert) of Timely Assets: The Politics of Resources and their Temporalities.
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