Fr. 43.50

Virtual War and Magical Death - Technologies and Imaginaries for Terror and Killing

English · Paperback / Softback

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Klappentext Virtual War and Magical Death is a provocative examination of the relations between anthropology and contemporary global war. Several arguments unite the collected essays, which are based on ethnographic research in varied locations, including Guatemala, Uganda, and Tanzania, as well as Afghanistan, Pakistan, Iraq, and the United States. Foremost is the contention that modern high-tech warfare-as it is practiced and represented by the military, the media, and civilians-is analogous to rituals of magic and sorcery. Technologies of "virtual warfare," such as high-altitude bombing, remote drone attacks, night-vision goggles, and even music videoes and computer games that simulate battle, reproduce the imaginative worlds and subjective experiences of witchcraft, magic, and assault sorcery long studied by cultural anthropologists.Another significant focus of the collection is the U.S. military's exploitation of ethnographic research, particularly through its controversial Human Terrain Systems (HTS) Program, which embeds anthropologists as cultural experts in military units. Several pieces address the ethical dilemmas that HTS and other counterinsurgency projects pose for anthropologists. Other essays reveal the relatively small scale of those programs in relation to the military's broader use of, and ambitions for, social scientific data.Contributors. Robertson Allen, Brian Ferguson, Sverker Finnström, Roberto J. González, David H. Price, Antonius Robben, Victoria Sanford, Jeffrey Sluka, Koen Stroeken, Matthew Sumera, Neil L. Whitehead Zusammenfassung The contributors to this provocative collection scrutinize the relations between anthropology and contemporary global war! contending that modern high-tech warfare is analogous to rituals of magic and sorcery! and examining the U.S. military's exploitation of ethnographic research.

List of contents

Acknowledgments ix

Introduction: Virtual War and Magical Death / Neil L. Whitehead and Sverker Finnström 1

1. Ethnography, Knowledge, Torture, and Silence / Neil L. Whitehead 26

2. The Role of Culture in Wars Waged by Robots: Connecting Drones, Anthropology, and Human Terrain System's Prehistory / David Price 46

3. Cybernetic Crystal Ball: "Forecasting" Insurgency in Iraq and Afghanistan / Roberto J. González 65

4. Full Spectrum: The Military Invasion of Anthropology / R. Brian Ferguson 85

5. Today He Is No More: Magic, Intervention, and Global War in Uganda / Sverker Finnström 111

6. The Hostile Gaze: Night Vision and the Immediation of Nocturnal Combat in Vietnam and Iraq / Antonius C. G. M. Robben 132

7. Virtual Soldiers, Cognitive Laborers / Robertson Allen 152

8. Virtual Wars in the Tribal Zone: Air Strikes, Drones, Civilian Casualties, and Losing Hearts and Minds in Afghanistan and Pakistan / Jeffrey A. Sluka 171

9. Propaganda, Gangs, and Social Cleansing in Guatemala / Victoria Sanford 194

10. The Soundtrack to War / Matthew Sumera 214

11. War at Large: Miner Magic and the Carrion System / Koen Stroeken 234

References 251

Contributors 279

Index 281

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