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Where there is dirt, there is system

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posted on 2022-10-05, 23:21 authored by Rachel RiddellRachel Riddell

American anthropologist Mary Douglas coined the phrase “Where there is dirt, there is system.” This phrase is considered in the context of diverse case studies: the Dalits of India, the condition of anorexia, and food taboos among the Orang Asli community of Malaysia. The paper argues that underlying diverse societies is a need to achieve system and structure by distinguishing between the acceptable and the unacceptable as related to matters of health and taboo.


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  • United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland

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  • Postgraduate Student

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University of Birmingham

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