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Look Inside Blood Sacrifice and the Nation

Blood Sacrifice and the Nation
Totem Rituals and the American Flag

$34.99 (G)

Part of Cambridge Cultural Social Studies

  • Date Published: March 1999
  • availability: Available
  • format: Paperback
  • isbn: 9780521626095

$ 34.99 (G)

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About the Authors
  • The authors argue that American patriotism is a civil religion organized around a sacred flag, whose followers engage in periodic blood sacrifice of their own children to unify the group. Using an anthropological theory, this groundbreaking book presents and explains the ritual sacrifices and regeneration that constitute American nationalism, the factors making particular elections or wars successful or unsuccessful rituals, the role of the mass media in the process, and the sense of malaise that has pervaded American society during the post-World War II period.

    • A new and compelling theory of American patriotism as a civil religion
    • Explains in detail how flag ritual and symbolism bear on every aspect of American life
    • Offers an explanation of why American society has felt a lack of direction since World War II
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    Reviews & endorsements

    "This is a book for those who are willing to examine some of their most basic assumptions about what it means to be an American. ...well written..." Choice

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    Product details

    • Date Published: March 1999
    • format: Paperback
    • isbn: 9780521626095
    • length: 416 pages
    • dimensions: 228 x 154 x 27 mm
    • weight: 0.67kg
    • contains: 30 b/w illus.
    • availability: Available
  • Table of Contents

    1. Introduction
    2. That old flag magic
    3. Theorizing the flagbody
    4. The totem myth
    5. Death touchers and border crossers
    6. Totem memory and succession
    7. Refreshing the borders
    8. Dismemberment and reconstruction
    9. Fresh blood, Public meat
    10. One size fits all
    11. Epilogue
    Appendix 1. The flag in life: Representational politics of the Stars and Stripes David W. Ingle and Carolyn Marvin
    Appendix 2. Representative coding categories.

  • Authors

    Carolyn Marvin, University of Pennsylvania

    David W. Ingle, University of Pennsylvania

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