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Scottish Crofters: A Historical Ethnography of a Celtic Village 2nd Edition

Susan Parman

  • Published
  • Previous Editions 2002, 1990
  • 208 Pages


This case study focuses on Geall, a community in the Scottish Outer Hebrides. With an understanding gained from an intimate, long-term relationship with Scotland, things Scottish, and the people of the community the author describes Geall as a human community and places it in the wider cultural, historical, economic, and sociopolitical contexts of maintaining relationships to Scotland, England and Europe. This is the first book to look at a Scottish Highland Community and the first ethnography to utilize the semiotic theory of culture, which views history as an act of cultural creation. The book emphasizes the way symbols are used to interpret elements of the culture such as economy, power, mental illness, and religion, by exploring the significant symbols associated with the state, the mechanisms for integrating community and state, and how people define leaders and social role.

Susan Parman, California State University, Fullerton

Susan Parman is an anthropologist, educator, and writer with eclectic interests. Although her major geographical interest is Europe and particularly Scotland, she has done research on Japan, Central Asia, Mexican-Americans, and the American South. Her theoretical interests range from the history of anthropology to the anthropology of islands and the biocultural study of salt and dreams. She also publishes poetry, short stories, and other forms of fiction. As outgoing president of the Society for the Anthropology of Europe, Parman continues to contribute to discussions of the relationship of Europe and anthropology through promotion of symposia, workshops, and scholarships. She received her Ph.D. from Rice University and is currently professor and chair of the Department of Anthropology at California State University ¿ Fullerton.
Introduction to the Second Edition.
1. History and the Celt.
2. The Crofting Township.
3. Harris Tweed.
4. The Informal Structure of Leadership, Decision-Making, and Social Order.
6. Kinship, Courtship, and Marriage.
7. Supernaturalism.
8. Creating Culture in Ciall: The Bottle and the Bible.
9. Stories and Silence.
A Story of Scotland.
Recommended Reading.
Biographical Note.