M. Godellet & "The Gift of the Gift". - Social anthropology

M. Godelie & "The Gift Riddle".

In the book "The Gift Riddle (1996), the famous French anthropologist Maurice Godelier (born 1934) continues the anthropologists of the 20th century. the study of the characteristics of gift exchange in a traditional society, criticizes marginalism and shows two types of phenomena and objects:

objects that can be the subject of a transaction are subject to exchange;

- items that can not be exchanged.

The search for "cultural reference points", namely: inalienable values ​​that oppose liberal ideology, is one of the goals of Godelier's work as applied to the study of modern society in which "almost everything is sold." It shows the significance of a number of non-economic achievements of European culture, notes the growth and new forms of gratuitous assistance existing in the industrial world.

Godel shows the qualitative difference between the world of the modern and the world of the traditional. At the same time, in his opinion, the industrial world also includes two essentially different aspects: a) alienated, sold and b) inalienable. Thus, in today's society, the power of self-interest, calculation and calculation is not comprehensive.

The French anthropologist compares the system of relations between people in industrialized countries and the relationships of the inhabitants of the Pacific islands living at the pre-technological stage of development. From this comparison, another problem arises: will the whole world be built monotonously, in accordance with the principles of a liberal economy, or should the diversity of people's lives be preserved in the future, at least in the "reserve" anthropologists - on the islands of the Pacific Ocean.

Godel shows that in Moss' work "how", or the soul of a thing, is treated as that force that causes things to circulate and return to their owner: Moss sees the source of exchange in the "spiritual mechanisms" attributing things to the soul or spirit . But Godelier believes that the explanation of the relations arising as a result of the potlatch can not be reduced only to the magical world in which things live as embodied spirits.

Godelay emphasizes that the "obstacle that arose before Moss was due to the fact that he did not attempt to compare and comprehend in the same theoretical framework noncirculating sacred objects and circulating valuable objects" . It is the interaction of these two types of objects, as well as their nature and origin, Godelier puts in the center of the study. He carried out an analysis of the mythology of sacred objects and gift exchange between people and gods, as "in myths the continuity and identity of & lt; ... & gt; spiritual essence between gods or spirits, former original donors of this sacred property, by this very sacred property and people who own it today " .

Godel showed the versatility and multidimensionality of the gifting processes and demonstrated the relationship of social relations and religious faith (faith in people-things). He showed that the combination of these two circumstances "creates a general transformation of reality and mental inversion" of actual relations existing in practice. Objects turn into subjects - subjects into objects. Not only do people interact with each other by means of things, henceforth the things and spirits that describe them affect each other through people .

Unconditional merit M. Godelie in posing the question of the existence of inalienable values ​​ in modern and traditional cultures. In his work, the idea that the process of exchange does not exhaust all the diversity of human relationships not only in traditional society but also in the world of modern culture is fully justified.

Characterizing the pivot points of any society, Godelier argues that humanity can not exist without two spheres: the spheres of exchange, whatever that is exchanged, and the spheres where individuals and groups carefully store for themselves and then pass on to their descendants or those who share the same faith, things, names, forms of thinking & quot ;. "Just starting from these points of support, these realities," fixed in the nature of things, "created, manifested identity, individual and collective. It is they who inform the time of the movement of the .

The French anthropologist emphasizes the role of those phenomena that can not be exchanged: "what is stored is always" realities "that return individuals and groups to other times and put them again in the face of their origins, origin" . Thus, the items "not exchangeable" serve as a "social relay", the transfer of cultural values ​​from one generation to another. In particular, among the objects that do not belong to the commodity relations, Godelier singles out a constitution, which is a "public good and assumes the existence of a collective of citizens who voted for it" .

Godelay emphasizes that "the boundaries of social commerce are obvious." Can we imagine a child who contracts with his parents for a birth? This idea is absurd .

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