‘Freedom’ is one of the most fiercely contested words in contemporary global experience. This book provides an up-to-date overview from an anthropological perspective of the diverse ways in which freedom is understood and practised in everyday life, including the emergent relationships between governance, autonomy and liberty. The contributors offer a wealth of ethnographic insight from a variety of geographic, cultural and political contexts. Taken together the essays constitute a radical challenge to assumptions about what freedom means in today’s world.
1. The inscrutability of freedom and the liberty of a life-project 2. Becoming “No One”: Muneyoshi Yanagi’s Theory of Freedom in the Figure of the Unfree Craftsman 3. John Brown: Freedom and Imposture in the early Twentieth Century Trans-Caribbean 4. Self-Interest and Civil Society: Freedoms and Liberties in South Italian Associationism 5. Livin’ This Way’: Reading Aboriginal Self-Determination Through Some Debates About Freedom 6. Jeronimo’s declaration of independence Piro accounts of slavery and freedom 7. “Don’t mess with my fags!” – said the drug lord: queer liberation in a Brazilian favela 8. Liberty and Lock-in: the trouble with freedom in anthropology