From Round to Square (and back)

For The Emperor's Teacher, scroll down (↓) to "Topics." It's the management book that will rock the world (and break the vase, as you will see). Click or paste the following link for a recent profile of the project:

A new post appears every day at 12:05* (CDT). There's more, though. Take a look at the right-hand side of the page for over four years of material (2,000 posts and growing) from Seinfeld and country music to every single day of the Chinese lunar calendar...translated. Look here ↓ and explore a little. It will take you all the way down the page...from round to square (and back again).
*Occasionally I will leave a long post up for thirty-six hours, and post a shorter entry at noon the next day.

Saturday, April 12, 2014

Theory Cartoons—Gifts of Contempt

Click here for the "Theory Cartoons" Resource Center (all posts available)
Click here for the introduction to the Round and Square series "Theory Cartoons" (coming soon)
This is a "small" (小) post—click here for an explanation of Round and Square post lengths.
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On this date on Round and Square's History 
12 April 2013—China's Lunar Calendar 2013 04-12
12 April 2013—Assignments: Ethnographic Review
12 April 2012—Fieldnotes From History: Longshan Temple
12 April 2011—Breaking the Vessel: Luoyang Longing
[a] The New Yorker 2013 12-24
Marcel Mauss never saw this coming. Think about it—really think about it.

A gift with condescension. 
[b] Nope...the opposite RF

Oh, but wait...if you have read even Argonauts of the Western Pacific, you know about that part (just think about a kula shell being thrown contemptuously at your feet). If this doesn't make sense, you really need to read Argonauts, the first ethnographic classic (brilliant, for all its flaws).

This takes all of that to a new level. This is the contemptuous gift that you don't (and maybe can't) notice. The giver has the satisfaction of knowing how superior s/he is to you, even though no one else notices. Now think about that. No one notices your contempt.

Yup, you're smarter than everyone, and social exchange is your own head.

Now this is what social and cultural (and psychological) theory is all about.

[c] My own head...thinking... RF

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