History of the Foundation

View grantees in the Image Library

Symbolism Through Time

International Symposium #100 Group Photo

January 11 - 22, 1986
Fez, Morocco

PUBLICATION:    Culture Through Time:  Anthropological Approaches (Emiko Ohnuki-Tierney, Ed.) Stanford University Press, Stanford, California, 1990


bookcoverKaren Blu (New York University, USA)
James Boon (Cornell University, USA)
Peter Burke (University of Cambridge, UK)
James Clifford (University of California, Santa Cruz, USA)
Lee Drummond (McGill University, Canada)
James Fernandez (University of Chicago, USA)
Clifford Geertz (Institute for Advanced Study-Princeton, USA)
Don Handelman (Hebrew University, Israel)
Bruce Kapferer (University College, London, UK)
Kazuhiko Komatsu (Osaka University, Japan)
David Krupa (University of Wisconsin, USA)
Edmund Leach (University of Cambridge, UK)
Noboro Miyata (University of Tsukuba, Japan)
Emiko Ohnuki-Tierney, organizer (University of Wisconsin, USA)
Sherry Ortner (University of Michigan, USA)
Lita Osmundsen (Wenner-Gren Foundation, USA)
James Peacock (University of North Carolina, USA)
Paul Rabinow (University of California, Berkeley, USA)
Marshall Sahlins (University of Chicago, USA)
Valerio Valeri (University of Chicago, USA)


This conference addressed the need to integrate an awareness of historical process into the study of cultures and the writing of anthropological texts. Leading scholars in the field of symbolic studies, of very different theoretical and epistemological persuasions, discussed relationships between meaning and context, myth and reality, history and symbolism, and process and structure. The paper topics covered a diverse set of regional case studies and a variety of historical time-frames. The conference attempted to bring about a shift of paradigm in symbolic studies, which over the years has dealt mainly with history as symbolic text, in order to incorporate the perspective of history as a process of change.