The University of Pennsylvania Press is having a book sale; unfortunately, the prices are not slashed so dramatically that they fall into the can’t-resist category (at least in my current state of incomelessness), but they have such a rich catalog that I linger wistfully over any number of the titles—Listening for the Text: On the Uses of the Past, by Brian Stock, for instance (“The essays in this volume are about a segment of the past that runs roughly from the end of antiquity to the thirteenth century. More generally, they are about recollecting the past by putting words into writings. They are equally about the past that is written about and the writing that brings it to life. In other words, they deal with the creation of the past as text.”), or much of the Anthropology, Folklore, Linguistics section, for example Jewish Russians: Upheavals in a Moscow Synagogue, by Sascha L. Goluboff (“Sascha Goluboff focuses on a Moscow synagogue, now comprising individuals from radically different cultures and backgrounds, as a nexus from which to explore issues of identity creation and negotiation. Following the rapid rise of this transnational congregation–headed by a Western rabbi and consisting of Jews from Georgia and the mountains of Azerbaijan and Dagestan, along with Bukharan Jews from Central Asia–she evaluates the process that created this diverse gathering and offers an intimate sense of individual interactions in the context of the synagogue’s congregation”) and Marshall G. S. Hodgson’s classic The Secret Order of Assassins: The Struggle of the Early Nizari Ismailis Against the Islamic World (Hodgson, who died at 46 in 1968, produced what is still one of the best places to start learning about the history of the Islamic world in his three-volume magnum opus The Venture of Islam).

I learned about the sale via the new anthropology group blog Savage Minds, which bids fair to be the Language Log of anthropology, entertaining and informative. Drop by and check it out.


  1. Thanks for the Savage Minds plug!

  2. I see Savage Minds has moved:

    This will be the last post on the domain savageminds.org, but the site will live on. It will live on both at this address (savageminds.org) where there will be a permanent archive of our twelve years of blogging and discussion. It will also gain new life as all your favorite Savage Minds bloggers move over to the new domain: anthrodendum.org.

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