Tag Archives: Mary Douglas

Waste is not “matter out of place”

Douglas’ theory of matter out of place is about power. Something in the wrong spot, something poisonous, is not matter out of place. Unless it threatens power.

‘Disease avoidance: from animals to culture’

A new themed volume on ‘Disease avoidance: from animals to culture‘ in the Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society B: Biological Sciences provides some food for through when read against Mary Douglas’s Purity and Danger. Douglas insists that we not read food taboos and other cleanliness rituals as medical-materialistic (ie, Jews don’t eat pork because of […]
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Dirt: The Filthy Reality of Everyday Life

The Wellcome Collection in London, part of the Wellcome Trust, opens an exhibit this Thursday, March 24, that explores changing attitudes toward dirt and cleanliness from the seventeenth century to the mid-21st. The show is built around specific examples in six different places — Delft, London, Glasgow, Dresden, New Delhi, and New York. It runs […]
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