Program in Early Cultures Events
Carlo Severi (Ecole des Hautes Etudes en Sciences Sociales, Paris)
"Semasiography, Picture-Writing and the Amerindian Arts of Memory"
Wednesday, October 30, 2013 at 5:30 pm
Mencoff Hall, 68 Waterman Street, Second Floor Seminar Room
In this paper, Severi argues that the logic of Native American Indian mnemonics (pictographs, khipus) cannot be understood only from comparison with writing, but requires a comparative anthropology. Rather than trying to know if Native American techniques of memory are true scripts or mere mnemonics, we can explore the formal aspects both have in common, and compare the mental processes they call for. In this perspective, techniques of memory stop being hybrids or imprecise, and we will better understand their nature and functions as mental artifacts. This interpretation of picture-writing system can provide for a new perspective on Amerindian semasiographies, both in theoretical and in empirical terms.
Carlo Severi is an anthropologist of memory who serves as the Director of Studies at the Ecole des Hautes Etudes en Sciences Sociales (EHESS) in Paris and the Director of Research at CNRS. He pursued his doctoral degree under the tutelage of Claude Levi-Strauss at EHESS, first studying indigenous theories of mental illness and the transmission of shamanistic knowledge among the Kuna of Panama. His work has considered psychology, image,and memory from an anthropological lens, with recent publications including Paroles en Actes: Anthropologie et Pragmatique (2010), El Sendero y la Voz: Hacia una Antropologia de Memoria (2010), and Traditions et Temporalités des Images (2009).
A Mellon Foundation Sawyer Seminar
Organized by Susan Alcock, John Bodel, and Stephen Houston
The Emotional Bond: Deepening Relations Between Animals, Humans, Nature
Saturday, October 26, 2013, 10:00 am-4:00 pm
Snakes on a Plane
Wednesday, November 6, 2013 at 7:30 pm
Ewen Bowie (University of Oxford)
"Masters, Slaves, Animals and Freedom: A Mytilenean Perspective"
Wednesday, November 20, 2013 at 5:30 pm
Menageries and the Giving and Costly Pet
Friday, February 7-Saturday, February 8, 2014
Beasts, Monsters, and the Fantastic in the Religious Imagination
February 28-March 1, 2014
Con-Socials As Mirrors and Resources
Friday, April 4-Sunday, April 6, 2014
For more information, visit the Animal Magnetism pages on this website.
Additional Related Events
The goal of the Culture and Religion in the Ancient Mediterranean Colloquium is to promote high-level, interdisciplinary dialogue among faculty and graduate students who deal with religion and culture in antiquity in the Mediterranean basin and west Asia, all rather loosely defined. CRAM meets monthly during the academic year. Each meeting lasts about an hour, and typically is centered on a pre-circulated paper. CRAM is currently administered by Religious Studies.
For the full schedule, visit CRAM's website.