Concepts for the Study of Regional Culture

Claudio Lomnitz-Adler

in Exits from the Labyrinth

Published by University of California Press

Published in print January 1993 | ISBN: 9780520077881
Published online May 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780520912472 | DOI:
Concepts for the Study of Regional Culture

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This chapter proposes a terminology and conceptual framework for studying culture in internally differentiated regional spaces. It develops a notion of regional culture as culture in power-regions, and illustrates five concepts: “intimate culture,” “culture of social relations,” “localist ideology,” “coherence,” and “mestizaje.” It reviews key areas for the ethnographic description of regional culture and hegemony. It is shown that there are internal contradictions involved in the organization of social space. The spatial structure of sign distribution is linked to the general economic regional structures in which sign transmission occurs. The manipulation of national mythology and the construction of frames and idioms of interaction between cultural groups are elaborated. Three major dimensions of the analysis have been the economy of sign transmission and distribution, the regional political economy of class and its implications for the spatial analysis of meaning, and the ways in which dominant discourses help organize social space.

Keywords: regional culture; intimate culture; social relations; localist ideology; coherence; mestizaje; hegemony; social space; sign transmission; political economy

Chapter.  11318 words. 

Subjects: Anthropology

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