Communitas: a trope made to travel

Simon Coleman

Resumo


As a key trope in the social scientific study of pilgrimage, communitas has been heavily criticized for its overly simplistic characterization of motivations for sacred travel and its failure to acknowledge the continued salience of conflicts among visitors to sacred shrines. Nonetheless, despite repeatedly being ‘falsified’, the trope remains a significant one within contemporary research. This paper uses the concept of entextualization to explore why communitas has been so readily applied to a variety of contexts. I argue that the development of the term by Victor and Edith Turner reflected an increasing degree of abstraction in their own work, resulting in a ‘seductive semiotics’. I reflect on what the apparent ubiquity of communitas has enabled and occluded in the study of pilgrimage.


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DOI: https://doi.org/10.15603/2176-1078/er.v33n2p125-157

 

            

       

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Este obra está licenciado com uma Licença Creative Commons Atribuição-NãoComercial 4.0 Internacional.