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Commons and Borderlands: Working Papers on Interdisciplinarity, Accountablility, and the Flow of Knowledge;Law, Anthropology, and the Constitution of the Social: Making Persons and Things

Abstract

This has been a very difficult review to write. In part, the difficulty stems fromthe books under review themselves. They are both extremely impressive albeitvery different collections. One consists of a series of working papers whose pro-visionality is belied by their acuity. The other consists of a series of tightly fo-cused essays by anthropologists, historians, and legal scholars which workexceptionally well together, forming a volume that puts forward a strong, coher-ent, and important agenda for studies of law and culture. The challenge in writ-ing this review does not just derive from the quality of the work but also from itssubstantive focus: the institutional and intellectual histories and trajectories ofinterdisciplinarity in the university today (which Strathern investigates, ethnography-style, and which Pottage and Mundy’s volume exemplifies) and the relationshipbetween interdisciplinarity, society (broadly defined), and science (also broadlydefined) in the makeup of persons, things, and their relations

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