Graham Jones is a cultural and linguistic anthropologist who explores how people use language and other media to enact expertise in practice, performance, and interaction. His most recent book "Magic's Reason: An Anthropology of Analogy" ( 2017) examines the meaning of magic in Western modernity. While at Princeton University, he was a fellow in the 2007-2010 cohort in the Society and affiliated with the Department of Anthropology. He received his Ph.D. from New York University.
In Québec today, circus is an industry worth billions, representing one of Canada’s most distinctive cultural exports. Cirque du Soleil is now a truly global brand. This talk focuses on a smaller, avant-garde Québécois troupe that has also achieved international renown: Les 7 doigts de la main. Founded by former Cirque du Soleil acrobats, but embracing an intentionally anti-Cirque ethos, Les 7 doigts seeks to privilege intimate self-expression over grandiose, otherworldly spectacle. By following their creative process ethnographically, Graham Jones explores how these cultural producers constitute and enact qualities such as authenticity and individuality as artistic values and interactional achievements.