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Studia ethnologica Croatica, Vol.3 No.1 June 1992. -

The author proposes a hypothesis that older Croatian ethnology has not been defined nor practiced as the science of peoples but as the science of culture. This is argued in spite of the fact that the founder of Croatian ethnology Antun Radić defined it explicitly as -the science of peoples-. Two ethnologists who have marked a greater part of Croatian ethnology in this century - Branimir Bratanić and Milovan Gavazzi - have even less contributed to such a definition of the science. The author brings evidence to the thesis that in the works of these ethnologists, ethnology was not dealt with as the science of peoples neither in theory nor in practice. Furthermore, based on the results of their research we cannot criticize them, as earlier critics have done, for defining the people as a natural, universal and ahistorical category, a bearer of a genuine culture. To the contrary, the two ethnologists have showed that the culture of a people, here the Croatian people, is a mixture of various cultural, ethnic and ecological influences. However, they practiced ethnology from a specific cultural and historical angle which, from the author-s viewpoint, has prevented them to contribute to the knowledge of the Croatian culture as distinctive from other ethnic cultures. To be able to contribute to such topics Croatian ethnologists should radically change their approach to culture.

croatian ethnology; science of culture; science of peoples; cultural identity; Bratanić; Gavazzi

Autor: Jasna Čapo - ; Institut za etnologiju i folkloristiku, Zagreb, Croatia



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