1. University of Virginia
  2. Arts & Sciences

'Communitas' - New book by Edith Turner

— from Dionisios Kavadias

In this seminal work, Edith Turner extends the concept of communitas that Victor Turner developed nearly four decades ago. Communitas is inspired fellowship, a group's unexpected joy in sharing common experiences, the sense felt by a group when their life together takes on full meaning. Turner shows how communitas is a driving force in history as it operates personally, in religion, in revolution, in all domains of human life. It is grounded in lived events, and may occur as the climax to a process that takes people from violence to shared intimate transcendence. Turner establishes by narration and multicultural case studies the fundamental importance of communitas to human personal, social, and spiritual well-being. She even follows the instinctive response that humanity makes to the overall natural world, thus including the spiritual bonding of the human and the non-human. Then the book shows exactly how we align ourselves to recognize communitas in action. This is—its 'key.' At heart, this is a very religious book, or as Turner writes, a connection among 'nature, spirit-energy, and soul.'

Praise

"A monument to the serial careers of a remarkable anthropological couple."—Barbara Tedlock, professor of Anthropology, SUNY – Buffalo 

"Just suppose someone did know just exactly what community is, and how to resolve its complexities by revealing the communitas behind it, that would be Edie Turner, and this book would be the way she does it, for once and for all, and this time for real."—Roy Wagner, professor of Anthropology, University of Virginia

Date: 
Wednesday, 1 February 2012