clifford geertz: “deep play: notes on the balinese cockfight” summary and review to start form the bottom line, clifford geertz’s essential notion expressed in. “Deep Play: Notes on the Balinese Cockfight” is one of Clifford Geertz’s most influential articles which illustrates not only the meaning of a given. Perhaps one of the most widely read anthropological essays, “Deep Play: Notes on the Balinese Cockfight” by Clifford Geertz is available.

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Balinese Cockfights and the Seduction of Anthropology. Considered Geertz’s most seminal work, the essay plaay the meaning of cockfighting in Balinese culture. It was, moreover, still possible for people who talked too openly about certain cockight to get a knock on the door in the middle of the night. The idea of culture as a set of symbols that we share back and forth seems almost custom-designed to avoid the kinds of political economic analysis Rola and myself would like to see.

Whenever a match brings closer together people of the dockfight social status, it deepens this migration, and consequently leads to the constant restructuring of social ranks inside each step of the hierarchical social ladder.

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log edep We may have moved away from the type of culturalism that ignores the political and economic context, but it seems pretty banal to point this out, at least in American anthropology French anthropology being another story. For the local population, cockfighting is also an instrument of self-analysis and a way of presenting their culture to the outsiders.

Self-mockery seems to be an essential ingredient for making an anthropological classic.

Cultural Reader: Clifford Geertz: “Deep Play: Notes on the Balinese Cockfight” – summary and review

Geertz shows how the Balinese cockfight serves as a cultural text which embodies, at least a portion of, what the real meaning of being Balinese is. People never bet against a cock from their own reference group. In Taiwan, when Ruth and I were doing fieldwork inthe first thing we did when arriving in Puli was report to the foreign affairs policeman who seemed, in fact, a very pleasant person…but anyway.


Has an Indonesian scholar written a reaction to the piece? Author Clifford Geertz — was an American anthropologist and sociologist, who wrote extensively on traditional cultures and religions in Southeast Asia and North America. Cockfights were generally illegal in Indonesia when Geedtz was doing his fieldwork there in the s. More Geertz online at HyperGeertz.

That makes a geergz more sense, and, in my case, explains why, when I went looking for how to produce a thick description, I turned to Victor Turner. Like a lot of people I read the Balinese cockfight article in my anthropological youth and I remember enjoying it although the Person, Time, and Conduct essay in that same volume was the one that really captured my attention.

The native is not the only one affected by this context. Views Read Edit View history. Retrieved from ” https: Notes on the Balinese Cockfight. My earlier comment got cut short because I had to leave suddenly, but I had wanted to point out something else.

Notes on the Balinese Cockfight Cokcfight interest you: Roney Wilson December 30, at 3: We constantly argue the superiority of the West, but at a closer look we seem to come out empty handed from our search for deep play. To come round full circle, it may be worth remembering the material and political conditions of fieldwork in the s, 60s and 70s.

Deep Play: Notes on the Balinese Cockfight by Clifford Geertz

To ask of any cultural text, be it a cockfight or a folktale, who is talking, who is being talked to, what is being talked about, and what form of action is being called for, is to move cultural analysis to a new level that renders coclfight old antinomies of materialism and idealism irrelevant. The first cockfight that he and his wife viewed was broken up by the police.

To me most of the articles in Understanding Culture share a common feature: Other than the phenomenon of Hell Houses, the West is bereft whatsoever of significant high stake ventures. Notify me of new comments via email. Following Bentham, Geertz defines a “deep fight” is one in which the stakes are so high the people lose their rationality. Leave a Reply Cancel reply Enter your comment here From January 7 it will be open as usual.


Cockfights are illegal and the sudden appearance of the police during one of the first fights Geertz and his wife witnessed sent everyone scurrying home: Doing fieldwork in Taiwan in those years meant, among other things, being nnotes aware that certain topics were off-limits.

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Not only was he there, but he was embraced by the members of the society who loved his clumsy ways. About half-way down another fugitive ducked suddenly into a compound-his own, it turned out-and we, seeing nothing ahead of us but rice fields, open country, and a very high volcano, followed him.

As the three of us came tumbling into the courtyard, his wife, balinnese had apparently been through this sort of thing before, whipped out a table, a tablecloth, three chairs, plau three cups of tea, and we all, without any explicit communication whatsoever, sat down, commenced to sip tea, and sought to compose ourselves.

On December 31 and January 1 the Museum is closed. With this in mind, I believe that one should take the time to look at the rich culture of the East, and only then feel entitled to engage in a discussion about the merits of the cultural heritage of the civilized versus the one of the primitive, of the savage. Leave a comment Filed under Uncategorized Tagged as baliclifford geertzcockfightdeep playperformance.

Notes on the Balinese Cockfight” was written Geertz also notes that the higher the status of the participants in the cockfight, the deeper the cockfight is, and the deeper it the more a person identifies with his cock and the more the financial aspect of gambling associated with the fight is marginal in comparison with the symbolic aspects of it. It is a society’s manner of speaking to itself about itself, and is therefore of prime interest for the anthropologist. To find out more, including how to control cookies, see here: