In sorcery's shadows: a critical approach to a narrative genre


  • Bartlomiej Walczak University of Warsaw



This paper is concerned with the researcher/fieldwork relationship as expounded in Paul Ricoeur's thesis about a mutual configuration/refiguration relationship between the verbal and the textual perspective. Although anthropologists may configure textual representation of the studied culture in their narrative, they can also be subjected to the process of refiguration by the surrounding, "local" reality. Using Paul Stoller's project for eidetic anthropology as an example, I seek to demonstrate the boundaries of cognition in anthropology: the limitations of integrating two different cultural perspectives in one narrative, caused by a mimetic reaction typical of the refigurative mechanism.

Author Biography

Bartlomiej Walczak, University of Warsaw

Bartlomiej Walczak, born in 1977, is a sociologist and cultural anthropologist. His main interests are the epistemology and methodology of the social sciences, the history of anthropological field research, philosophy of text, and yanomamology. He works as an assistant professor at the College of Rehabilitation Pedagogy in Warsaw and as an assistant professor in the Institute of Applied Social Sciences at the University of Warsaw, Poland. He can be contacted at b.walczak(AT)