Introduction: Enquiries Into Contemporary Ritual Landscapes

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Abstract

‘Landscape’ and ‘ritual’ have been largely discussed in the social and human sciences, although their inter-relatedness has gained little scholarly attention. Drawing on earlier studies of ritual and landscape, as well as the authors′ own ethnographic works, ‘ritual landscape’ is suggested here as a useful analytical tool with which to understand how landscapes are produced, and how they, in their turn, produce certain types of being. ‘Ritual landscape’ recognises different modalities of agency, power-relation, knowledge, emotion, and movement. The article shows how the subjectivity of other-than-human beings such as ancestors, earth formations, land, animals, plants and, in general, materiality of ritual contexts, shape landscapes. We argue that ways of perceiving landscape includes a number of material and immaterial aspects indicated by ways of moving through landscapes and interacting with different human and non-human subjects that come to inhabit the world, creating relations and producing agentive ensembles and complexes.

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