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Crafting the fiesta: materiality, atmospheres and change in popular festivals 
Inigo Sanchez-Fuarros (Spanish National Research Council (CSIC))
Daniel Malet Calvo (ISCTE-IUL. University Institute of Lisbon)
Daniel Paiva (Universidade de Lisboa)
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Thursday 18 July, -, -
Time zone: Europe/Madrid
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Short Abstract:

This panel explores the interplay between materiality and atmospheric production in festive contexts. It reflects on the ways in which the tangible and the intangible are intertwined in making, shaping, and experiencing popular festivals, and how they adapt to shifting socio-cultural contexts.

Long Abstract:

Popular festivals have long been of interest to anthropology. They have been studied in terms of their cultural and social significance, for they often serve as a means of expressing and reinforcing a community's values, beliefs, and traditions. They also act as markers of identity, reinforcing a sense of belonging to a place or group, and as symbolic operators of latent conflict and dissent. Moreover, anthropologists have focused on festive symbols and rituals as means of expressing cultural, religious, and social meanings which serve to cyclically renew (or confront) the social order in any given territory. On the other hand, recent anthropological studies on festivals critically explore their changing policy environments, economic significance, and effects on local communities and the environment.

This panel seeks to specifically explore a growing theme in festive studies concerning the material dimension and the emotional and sensory aspects of festival experiences. We invite ethnographic contributors to explore the links between materiality and atmospheres in the making and staging of popular festivals. We are particularly interested in theoretical and empirical explorations on the role of crafting, selecting, and arranging various types of artifacts, including costumes, decorations, and built infrastructures, in shaping the ambiance of festivals and consequently impacting the attendees' experience. The panel is also interested in aspects of socio-cultural and political change regarding the conflicts that have arisen by dated/archaic representations of gender, race and colonial legacies. Proposals that explore the influence of modernity and neo-liberalism on the material culture of popular festivals are encouraged.

Accepted papers:

Session 1 Thursday 18 July, 2024, -
Session 2 Thursday 18 July, 2024, -