The epistemological status of the concept of ethnicity

  • Thomas Hylland Eriksen
Keywords: ethnicity, theory, concepts, reflexivity, Fredrik Barth

Abstract

The subject of this paper is the ambiguity of the conceptualisation of ethnicity. Can it fruitfully be regarded as a relational property of any social system, or should the concept rather be confined to a specific kind of historical society, notably those defined as modern societies? In exploring this question, the author draws on selected theoretical and meta-theoretical contributions to the analysis of ethnicity, beginning with Fredrik Barth’s ‘Introduction’ to his edited volume, Ethnic Groups and Boundaries.

Published
2019-03-30
Section
SCIENTIFIC ARTICLES