Conclusion
DEMOCRATIZATION AND ARRIVING
AT THE ‘‘END OF HISTORY’’ IN CHILE
Ethnographies, this one included, often open with scenes of arrival.∞
Yet I want to end with the trope of arrival as well, not only to think
about my own experiences as a researcher but also to contemplate the
nature of living ‘‘the present’’ right now.≤
The term ‘‘ethnographic
present’’ characterizes the ways in which anthropologists conven-
tionally portrayed their subjects of study as ‘‘peoples without history’’
who lived in static states of ‘‘culture,’’ which the ethnographer could
empirically study for the space of a few months or years in order to
extrapolate general principles about those peoples.≥ Thus, it was the
ethnographer who arrived to study these timeless worlds, which were
understood to embody the past of modern civilized nation-states.∂
Arrival constituted a privilege of the knowing, active (imperialist)
Self and was never a possibility for the (postcolonial) Other. José
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