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An Analysis of Mary Douglas's Purity and Danger Padraig Belton

An Analysis of Mary Douglas's Purity and Danger By Padraig Belton

An Analysis of Mary Douglas's Purity and Danger by Padraig Belton


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Summary

One of the most widely read books in the social sciences, Purity and Danger established Mary Douglas as one of the twentieth century's leading social scientists. She delves in great detail into existing arguments that portray traditional societies as evolving from savage beliefs and explains why she believes those arguments are wrong.

An Analysis of Mary Douglas's Purity and Danger Summary

An Analysis of Mary Douglas's Purity and Danger: An Analysis of the Concepts of Pollution and Taboo by Padraig Belton

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.

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.

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

Additional information

NGR9781912284634
9781912284634
1912284634
An Analysis of Mary Douglas's Purity and Danger: An Analysis of the Concepts of Pollution and Taboo by Padraig Belton
New
Paperback
Macat International Limited
2018-02-21
127
N/A
Book picture is for illustrative purposes only, actual binding, cover or edition may vary.
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