Tradition Through Modernity
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Tradition Through Modernity

By Pertti Anttonen J.
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Book Description

In their study of social practices deemed traditional, scholars tend to use the concept and idea of tradition as an element of meaning in the practices under investigation. But just whose meaning is it? Is it a meaning generated by those who study tradition or those whose traditions are being studied? In both cases, particular criteria for traditionality are employed, whether these are explicated or not. Individuals and groups will no doubt continue to uphold their traditional practices or refer to their practices as traditional. While they are in no way obliged to explicate in analytical terms their criteria for traditionality, the same cannot be said for those who make the study of traditions their profession. In scholarly analysis, traditions need to be explained instead of used as explanations for apparent repetitions and replications or symbolic linking in social practice, values, history, and heritage politics.

This book takes a closer look at ‘tradition’ and ‘folklore’ in order to conceptualize them within discourses on modernity and modernism. The first section discusses ‘modern’ and ‘traditional’ as modern concepts and the study of folklore as a modern trajectory. The underlying tenet here is that non-modernity cannot be represented without modern mediation, which therefore makes the representations of non-modernity epistemologically modern. The second section focuses on the nation-state of Finland and the nationalistic use of folk traditions in the discursive production of Finnish modernity and its Others. The insights are applicable worldwide in discussions on cultural representation.

This book is part of the Studia Fennica Folkloristica series.

Table of Contents
  • Tradition through Modernity
  • Title Page
  • Copyright Page
  • Contents
  • PREFACE
  • A SHORT INTRODUCTION
  • Part 1 The Modernness of the Non-Modern
    • 1. FOLKLORE, MODERNITY AND POSTMODERNISM: A THEORETICAL OVERVIEW
      • What is Postmodernism?
      • Phenomenological Hermeneutics and the Social Construction of Reality
      • Politics, Poetics and Reflexivity
    • 2. TRADITION IN AND OUT OF MODERNITY
      • Modern and Traditional – A Contradiction in Terms?
      • Modernity’s Temporal Others
      • Tradition as Modernity’s Otherness
      • Tradition as Model and Pattern
    • 3. FOLKLORE IN MODERNISM
      • Promodern and Antimodern
      • Modernity’s Paradox
      • Sociology as the Science of the Modern
      • The Paradigm of Loss in Folklore Studies
      • The Collector’s Gaze
      • Folklore as Literary Text
      • The Search for a Lost Community
      • Folklore in the Modern
      • Folklore as Contestation
    • 4. POSTMODERNIZATION IN THE MAKING
      • From Promodern to Antimodern
      • From Antimodern to Promodern
  • Part 2 Tradition, Modernity and the Nation-State
    • 5. FOLKLORE AS NATIONALIZED ANTIQUITIES
      • Nationalism as Territorial Symbolism and Control
      • An Issue of Power and Loyalty
      • The Local and the Translocal
      • A Discipline with a National Agenda
      • Promodernist Antimodernists
    • 6. TRADITION AND POLITICAL IDENTITY
      • Towards a European Consciousness and a European Identity
      • Cultural Identity as Political Identity
      • Folklore, Identity, Politics
      • The Nation and the State
      • A Bias for the Local
    • 7. GLOBALIZATION AND NATIONALISM
      • Global Context
      • Global Economy and Politics
      • The Global and the National
    • 8. CULTURAL HOMOGENEITY AND THE NATIONAL UNIFICATION OF A POLITICAL COMMUNITY
      • Common Genetic Heritage
      • Linguistic and Cultural Affinity
      • Karelians as Finns and Non-Finns
      • Innate Unity in Prehistory
      • Symbolic Lack of Class Hierarchies, and the Elite as Others
      • A Nation Divided?
    • 9. FOLK TRADITION, HISTORY AND ‘THE STORY OF FINLAND’
      • A Model for Nation Building
      • Folk Tradition as ‘People’s’ Culture
      • Language and Culture Point to the East
      • History and Periphery as Prerequisites for a Nation
      • Finland is Modern by Having History
  • NOTES
  • SOURCES
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