International Encyclopaedia
of the Histories of Anthropology

The American anthropologist Clifford Geertz (1926-2006) is one of the most outstanding figures in the history of the discipline. With a doctorate from Harvard University (1956), he conducted his research in Indonesia, first on the Muslim island of Java (1952-1953), then on the Hindu-Buddhist island of Bali (1957-1958), before going to Morocco in the 1960s, where he investigated the souk of Séfrou, a small town in the Atlas Mountains. His reflection, transversal to his work, on how anthropology should approach, describe and conceptualize the cultures it studies, had considerable influence in the second half of the twentieth century. Among his many works are: The Religion of Java (1960), Islam Observed. Religious Development in Morocco and Indonesia (1968/1992), The Interpretation of Cultures (1973), Works and Lives. The Anthropologist as Author (1988/1992), as well as his autobiography, After the Fact: Two Countries, Four Decades, One Anthropologist (1996).

Keywords: Cultural anthropology | Postmodernism | Ethnography | 20th century | Morocco | Indonesia | Bali | Religion | Concept of culture | Political systems | Islam | Symbolic Anthropology | Interpretative anthropology/Hermeneutics | Anthropology and literature

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