The Luminosity of Protection

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Abstract

This paper addresses the orchestration of luminosity as a social and material phenomenon among a recently settled Bedouin community in Jordan. The paper focuses on the social importance of hospitality, and the consequent need to protect people, places and things against envy, harm, and misfortune from invisible malevolent forces. Through ethnographic research the paper investigates the luminous strategies employed to fulfil these social obligations, in light of recent years of settlement, modernization and increased Islamic orthodoxy. This is particularly interesting as it is only within the last few decades that this community has employed electrical lighting to domestic spaces, and issues of quantity and quality become interlinked with cultural notions of generosity, safety and religiosity. The paper will argue that the social use of colour and light are used to shape an atmosphere of “safety”, where the affordances of electrical light to reveal spaces is accompanied by the qualities of brilliance and colour to enhance those luminous effects visually and tie with spiritual strategies of protection.
OriginalsprogEngelsk
Publikationsdato2009
StatusUdgivet - 2009
Udgivet eksterntJa

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