Cookies Policy

This site uses cookies. By continuing to browse the site you are agreeing to our use of cookies.

I accept this policy

Find out more here

The Black Box: Notes on the Anthropology of the Enemy

No metrics data to plot.
The attempt to load metrics for this article has failed.
The attempt to plot a graph for these metrics has failed.
The full text of this article is not currently available.

Brill’s MyBook program is exclusively available on BrillOnline Books and Journals. Students and scholars affiliated with an institution that has purchased a Brill E-Book on the BrillOnline platform automatically have access to the MyBook option for the title(s) acquired by the Library. Brill MyBook is a print-on-demand paperback copy which is sold at a favorably uniform low price.

Access this article

+ Tax (if applicable)
Add to Favorites
You must be logged in to use this functionality

image of Inner Asia

This article critically revisits the Foucauldian perspective on modernity by exploring the constitutive importance of limits of transparency in relations of power and knowledge. It differentiates between Foucault's Panopticon as a model for modernity, which posits a total visibility of subject under modern gaze, and what I call cybernetic ways of knowing that posit the 'black box' of the inner self that is blocked from visibility. The case in point is a comparative study of two anthropologies – two groups of anthropological cadres – the American anthropologists who in the 1940s were involved in emerging Soviet studies, and Soviet anthropologists of the 1920s and 1930s who took part in Soviet reforms. The article draws attention to similarities in their perspective of images and notions of the enemy: the 'enemy of the people' within Soviet society and the Soviet society as the West's Cold War enemy. In doing so, the aim of this article is to develop an ethnographic perspective on state socialism that does not depend on a foundational dualist distinction between 'Soviet' and 'Western' or 'socialist' and 'capitalist' modernity as a starting point.


Full text loading...


Data & Media loading...

Article metrics loading...



Can't access your account?
  • Tools

  • Add to Favorites
  • Printable version
  • Email this page
  • Subscribe to ToC alert
  • Get permissions
  • Recommend to your library

    You must fill out fields marked with: *

    Librarian details
    Your details
    Why are you recommending this title?
    Select reason:
    Inner Asia — Recommend this title to your library
  • Export citations
  • Key

  • Full access
  • Open Access
  • Partial/No accessInformation