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Building in the Margins of Shacks: The Vision and Projects of Habitat for Humanity

Ananta Kumar Giri (Author)
Synopsis Our contemporary moment is characterized by a global resurgence of religion which manifests itself in many forms—from religious fundamentalism to a spiritual renewal of self and society. While religious fundamentalism and its globalization has aroused much interest and concern, mobilization of practical spirituality at the contemporary juncture has been a neglected theme and area of scholarly exploration. In this unusual study which combines anthropology and theories of global transformations in novel and creative ways, the author describes the global work of Habitat for Humanity, a U.S. based transnational socio-religious movement. It describes how Habitat builds in the margins of shacks in communities in the U.S.A. and in India, one of more than fifty countries around the globe where this movement is at work. There is currently a lamentable dearth of ethnography in this field and the book probably presents the first ever anthropological study of a transnational voluntary organization and social movement. The book also charts the pathways of a new anthropology—one which takes the global and spiritual dimensions of the human condition seriously and contributes to a new hermeneutics of recovery. Lucidly written and carefully argued, the book is a significant contribution to the study of religion, social movements and globalization. It would be of interest not only to scholars in such diverse fields as anthropology, philosophy, sociology and religious studies but also to activists in voluntary organizations and social movements in the emerging transnational public sphere and to spiritual seekers everywhere in the world.
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About the author

Ananta Kumar Giri

Ananta Kumar Giri, is currently on the faculty of the Madras Institute of Development Studies, Chennai, India and has worked and taught in many universities in India and abroad including University of Kentucky, USA; Aalborg University, Denmark and Alber Ludwigs Universitat, Freiburg, Germany. He has an abiding interest in social theory and social movements Dr. Giri has written numerous books in Oriya and English. Among his previous books are: Global Transformations: Postmodernity and Beyond (1998); Sameekhya a Purodrusti (Criticism and the Vision of the Future, 1999), Building in the Margins of Shacks: The Vision and Projects of Habitat for Humanity (2002); and Reflections and Mobilizations: Dialogues with Movements and Voluntary Organizations (2004).

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Bibliographic information

Title Building in the Margins of Shacks: The Vision and Projects of Habitat for Humanity
Format Hardcover
Date published: 01.01.2002
Edition 1st ed.
Language: English
isbn 8125021817
length xvii+298p., 23cm.