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Tradition and Modernity in the Mediterranean
The Wedding as Symbolic Struggle


Part of Cambridge Studies in Social and Cultural Anthropology

  • Date Published: March 2005
  • availability: Available
  • format: Paperback
  • isbn: 9780521619844

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About the Authors
  • The subject of Vassos Argyrou's study is modernisation, as reflected in the changing nature of wedding celebrations in Cyprus over two generations from the 1930s to the present day. He argues that modernisation is not a secular, progressive process, that remodels the life of a society, ironing out local differences. Rather, it is a legitimising discourse. It is an idiom which Greek Cypriots employ to represent, and contest, relationships between social classes, old and young, men and women, city folk and villagers. At the same time, by involving modernisation, they are submitting to foreign standards, and accepting the symbolic domination of Europe.

    • Original study of the concept of 'modernization' in the civilising process as exemplified by the evolution of Cypriot weddings
    • Well-written, accessible account with sympathetic portrait of Cyprus (a country which has been neglected by anthropologists in the past)
    • Appeal to anthropologists, sociologists and those concerned with the study of southern Europe
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    Product details

    • Date Published: March 2005
    • format: Paperback
    • isbn: 9780521619844
    • length: 224 pages
    • dimensions: 229 x 152 x 13 mm
    • weight: 0.34kg
    • contains: 12 b/w illus.
    • availability: Available
  • Table of Contents

    l. The island of Aphrodite
    2. Nationalism and the poverty of imagination
    3. The weddings of the l930s
    4. The meaning of change
    5. Distinction and symbolic class struggle
    6. Anthropology and the specter of 'monoculture'
    7. The dialectics of symbolic domination.

  • Author

    Vassos Argyrou, College of the Holy Cross, Massachusetts

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