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[ox-en] Re: The powerful abstraction of purposeless things

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Hi Martin!
When you start out suggesting a viewpoint as being 'European, racist, white'; and then go on attacking quotes taken from my previous message, it does feel as if you have implied me to be those things. Indeed, I am two out of three (your pick). 
Certainly I slide to the Eurocentric perspective, as from within my 'circle of incommensurability' I cannot see beyond my conceptual limitations etc. - that is inevitable though I do my best not to. Furthermore, I have read a book by M. Mauss and some works developing on him from an anti-capitalist angle, and clearly you have researched deeply into the subject, so I bow to your greater knowledge in aboriginal culture. And - no - I didnt get to the end of you mail without skipping half of the aboriginal story, but then I dare to say you did equally bad when reading/interpreting my mail. 
I recaptured my reading of how Mauss (and some other writers) defined a 'Gift economy'. Though their concepts might/might not be weighted down by 'noble salvage logic', it doesn't automatically make me into that from recapturing their writings. So, for example, your use of my note on 'purposeless things' is gravely missinterpreted. According to Mauss & other writers (to the best of my knowledge) - the products subject to gift swapping tended to be purposless in the sense that their use value were not lifesupportive necessities (tools, cloth, food). This does not imply that Mauss, nor I, think of 'gift economy' as a system without purpose (and hence market economy as purposeful). Just as you say gift has a tremendous importance in ordering  sociability in the community. 
I dont even know if our viewpoints on Gift differs very much - maybee it does or maybee it doesnt. It does feel, however, as you were too eager to read things into my email to get the chance of attacking a 'strawman'. Thats ok, but I get upset when the attack is connected to those three words in the beginning of your message.

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