Negara: The Theatre State in 19th Century Bali

Negara: The Theatre State in 19th Century Bali

Clifford Geertz


Combining nice studying, interpretative originality, analytical sensitivity, and a charismatic prose kind, Clifford Geertz has produced an enduring physique of labor with effect during the humanities and social sciences, and is still the main anthropologist in America.

His 1980 ebook Negara analyzed the social association of Bali prior to it was once colonized by way of the Dutch in 1906. the following Geertz utilized his extensively influential approach to cultural interpretation to the myths, ceremonies, rituals, and logos of a precolonial nation. He chanced on that the nineteenth-century Balinese nation defied effortless conceptualization by way of the wide-spread types of political thought and the normal Western ways to knowing politics.

Negara capability "country" or "seat of political authority" in Indonesian. In Bali Geertz stumbled on negara to be a "theatre state," ruled by way of rituals and logos instead of by means of strength. The Balinese nation didn't concentrate on tyranny, conquest, or potent management. as an alternative, it emphasised spectacle. the flowery ceremonies and productions the kingdom created have been "not skill to political ends: they have been the ends themselves, they have been what the country was once for.... strength served pomp, no longer pomp power." Geertz argued extra forcefully in Negara than in any of his different books for the basic value of the tradition of politics to a society.

a lot of Geertz's prior work--including his world-famous essay at the Balinese cockfight--can be obvious as prime as much as the whole portrait of the "poetics of power" that Negara so vividly depicts.

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