clifford geertz: “deep play: notes on the balinese cockfight” summary and review to start form the bottom line, clifford geertz’s essential notion expressed in. “Deep Play: Notes on the Balinese Cockfight” is one of Clifford Geertz’s most influential articles which illustrates not only the meaning of a given. Perhaps one of the most widely read anthropological essays, “Deep Play: Notes on the Balinese Cockfight” by Clifford Geertz is available.

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The article starts with a heart-pounding chase. In the case of the Balinese cockfight, a deep fight is one in which results are unpredictable, the odds are more even and the bets ccockfight more balanced. One thing that I always wonder about the cockfight essay is what Balinese people always think about it. Geertz shows how the Balinese cockfight serves as a cultural text which embodies, at least a portion of, what the real cockfiight of being Balinese is.

To ask of any cultural text, be it a cockfight or a folktale, who is talking, who is being talked to, what is being talked about, and what form of action is being called for, is to move cultural analysis to a new level that renders the old antinomies of materialism and idealism irrelevant.

Other nores the phenomenon of Hell Houses, the West is bereft whatsoever of significant high stake ventures. That what the cockfight has to say about Bali drep not altogether without perception and the disquiet it expresses about the general pattern of Balinese life is not wholly without reason is attested by the fact [what a marvellous example of passive voice and absence of the author] that in two weeks of Decemberduring the upheavals following the unsuccessful coup in Djakarta, between forty and eighty thousand Balinese in a population of about two million were killed, largely by p,ay another—the worst outburst in nores country.


Not only was he there, but he was embraced by the members of the society who loved his clumsy ways.

From January 7 it will be open as usual. Views Read Edit View history. His research was largely focused on symbolic aspects of reep activities traditions, rites, celebrations, social movements as well as on the worldviews and ethics that inform them.

Anthro Classics Online: Geertz’s Notes on the Balinese Cockfight | Savage Minds

Articles needing additional references from June All articles needing additional references. To start form the bottom line, Clifford Geertz ‘s essential notion expressed in ” Deep Play: Geedtz seems important to remember that Geertz was himself formed under Talcott Parsons, and that Interpretation of Culture was the big break with that tradition Religion of Java being pretty different.

It was, moreover, still possible for people who talked too openly about certain topics to get a knock on the door in the middle of the night. Notes on the Balinese Cockfight” is that a people’s culture is an ensemble of rituals which are in themselves ensembles, and these texts are what the anthropologist is trying to decipher.

Despite being illegal, cockfighting is a widespread and highly popular phenomenon in Bali, at least at the time “Deep Play: Is any of what Roseberry is saying new? To come round full circle, it may be worth remembering the material and political conditions of fieldwork in the s, 60s and 70s. June Learn how and when to remove this template message.

Deep Play: Notes on the Balinese Cockfight

For Geertz, culture is mainly psychological and personal. It is a symbolic manufactured representation of something very real in our social life. By continuing to use this website, you agree to their use. You are commenting using your WordPress. Based on a large pool of observations and interviews, Geertz concludes that the cockfight as a cultural phenomenon offers rich anthropological material for the interpretation of the Balinese society.


The “deep play” of the Balinese cockfight, says Geertz, is like artworks which illustrate an essential insight into our very existence. Rola brings up an interesting point. But it is a momentary gain or lost, the statues is only gained or lost momentarily following the fight but is maintained in the long run, with cockfights assisting in making sure of that.

Cultural Reader: Clifford Geertz: “Deep Play: Notes on the Balinese Cockfight” – summary and review

Whenever a match brings closer together people of the same social status, it deepens this migration, and consequently leads to the constant restructuring of social ranks inside each step of the hierarchical social ladder.

On December 31 and January 1 the Museum is closed. Clifford Geertz — was an American anthropologist and sociologist, who wrote extensively on traditional cultures and religions in Ob Asia and North America. Balinesse Cockfights and the Seduction of Anthropology. Roney Wilson December 30, at 3: Anonymous January 5, at 1: The last half of the essay describes the rituals of betting and concludes that the cockfight is the Balinese comment on themselves, as it embodies the network of social relationships in kin and village that govern traditional Balinese life.

I suppose Geertz would admit that the interpretive process is heavily determined by all sort of outside factors, but he rarely makes this a factor in his writing. We constantly argue the superiority of the West, but at a closer look we seem to come out empty handed from our search for deep play. William Roseberry thinks so.