I was looking forward to reading this book as I have lived in India and found the caste system interesting and then I am studying an A Level in Anthropology and wished to learn more about Socio-centric systems of personhood. Unfortunately it was a huge let down! Initially I tried reading the 60's version and the English was difficult to follow and it seemed like it wasnt translated well so I purchased this version and it was hardly any better. I am not sure if its the translation or just the style of the writer. I have read Durkheims books, Levi Strauss, for example, which take concentration but they make sense, however I didnt get anything useful about the caste system from this book at all.
If you want to know a brief history and possible origins of the system, I recommend The Penguin History of Early India (origins to AD1300) Professor Romila Thapar's 2002 as this has a great section on caste origins. I learned a great deal more about the differences between Jati, varnas etc from this. Perhaps Levi-Strauss would explain structures in social systems, for example, better than this book.
ホモ・ヒエラルキクス―カースト体系とその意味 (日本語) 単行本 – 2001/6/26
Kindle 端末は必要ありません。無料 Kindle アプリのいずれかをダウンロードすると、スマートフォン、タブレットPCで Kindle 本をお読みいただけます。
Missing the point2003年12月3日にアメリカ合衆国でレビュー済み
This text is not REALLY about caste. It is similar to Strathern's Gender of the Gift and her use of "Melanesia". Just as her book was epistemology rather than ethnography, so is Dumont's treatment of this phenomenon. He is actually using the theory of caste to explain his notion of hierarchy as the basic supposition within a culture as opposed to the western notions of equality/individualism. He, throughout the book, refers to the difference between IDEAL hierarchy (where power is completely subordinate to status) and CONCRETE hierarchy (where status is not absolute!). I would say this is a difficult text to begin with...and if you are looking for an ethnographic account of caste, you may find this text difficult to understand and disappointing. However, is you consider this an intellectual exercise in the nature of hierarchy and equality, you cannot find a better text!