a long time in the making. When I began the field-
work for this project, I was a starting-level lecturer at the University of
Edinburgh. I first thank colleagues in the Anthropology Department in
Edinburgh who encouraged me in the very first stages of this project,
especially Jeanne Cannizzo, Janet Carsten, Anthony Cohen, Anthony
Good, Iris Jean-Klein, and Jonathan Spencer. The University of Edin-
burgh also provided the first fieldwork expense grants for the research,
for which I remain grateful. They included the Faculty of Social Sciences
Initiatives Fund, the Hayter Travel and Field Research Grant, the Munro
Research Grant in Archaeology and Anthropology, and the Muray Endow-
ment Fund (all received in 1998 and 1999).
This project followed me along to Cambridge and determined the re-
search I was to conduct through more than a decade of teaching there.
There are people in life who take a role of mentorship and support at a
crucial early stage of one’s career. I express my deep gratitude in this
regard to three key people: Caroline Humphrey, Deniz Kandiyoti, and
Marilyn Strathern. They will each know and remember turning points
when they stood by my side. In Cambridge, I thank the late Sue Benson,
Barbara Bodenhorn, Harri Englund, Stephen Hugh-Jones, Sian Lazar,
Perveez Mody, David Sneath, and Nikolai Ssorin-Chaikov for their friend-
ship and collegiality. The most enjoyable and rewarding part of being in
Cambridge has been my work with PhD students. Eirini Avramopoulou,
Zerrin Özlem Biner, Matthew Carey, Georgia Galati, Mantas Kvedaravi-
cius, Juliana Ochs, Ross Porter, Marlene Schafers, Alice von Bieberstein,
Fiona Wright, Hadas Yaron, and Umut Yıldırım have each traveled with
me in the various stages of the intellectual journeys this book led me
through. Undergraduate and masters students have heard me deliver
lectures and run seminars on the theoretical and ethnographic themes
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