In 1996, against the backdrop of Alberto Fujimori’s increasingly corrupt national politics, an older woman in Lima, Peru—part of a group of women street sweepers protesting the privatization of the city’s cleaning services—stripped to the waist in full view of the crowd that surrounded her. Lima had just launched a campaign to revitalize its historic districts, and this shockingly transgressive act was just one of a series of events that challenged the norms of order, cleanliness, and beauty that the renewal effort promoted. The City at Its Limits employs a novel and fluid interweaving of essays and field diary entries as Daniella Gandolfo analyzes the ramifications of this act within the city’s conflicted history and across its class divisions. She builds on the work of Georges Bataille to explore the relation between taboo and transgression, while Peruvian novelist and anthropologist José María Arguedas’s writings inspire her to reflect on her return to her native city in movingly intimate detail. With its multiple perspectives—personal, sociological, historical, and theoretical—The City at Its Limits is a pioneering work on the cutting edge of ethnography.
Tullidge’s monumental work on the beautiful desert metropolis, its history and growth, its evolution and its most significant troubles is obviously also a history of Mormonism and its growth and development in Utah, written by “authority of the Council and under supervision of its Committee on Revision,” and therefore giving a picture of Mormonism in the most favorable light in which it is possible to present the institution to the public. There are too many outside evidences of material prosperity and thrift everywhere to be seen in the resourceful valley where the Mormon emigrants from Illinois and Missouri began to make their home in July, 1847, and the vitality of the community has been too plainly manifested on many occasions, for any one easily to escape the conclusion that the “Mormon question,” as it is called, is still one of no insignificant importance. Why and how it has become of such material significance is probably more fully explained in thus volume than in any other one work published. This is volume one out of two.