Date of Award

1-1-2010

Document Type

Thesis

Degree Name

M.A.

Department

Anthropology

First Advisor

Tracy Ehlers

Keywords

commitment mechanisms, commmune, intentional communities, sacralization of space, solidarity, utopia

Abstract

Utopian experiments creating new forms of community have dotted the globe

throughout human history. Despite grandiose visions, a majority of communal experiments

have faded quickly into oblivion. A wealth of scholarship has focused on reasons why

communes typically fail. My research of an ecumenical commune in northern New

Mexico examines what has facilitated its perpetuation for over 42 years. I participated in

this community for different periods of time for over three years. With the assistance of a

resident oral historian, I was able to expand my study into a diachronic view that spanned

decades. I conclude that there are multiple and interconnected factors that have given

strength to this community. Factors contributing to its persistence throughout its existence

have been a strong economic base, strong social structures, overarching ideologies,

adaptability, charismatic influence, ritual observances, sacralization of space and material

culture, amicable relations with the outside, conflict management mechanisms, and

boundary maintenance. In the past two decades other factors have been added or intensified

to contribute to its solidarity including a transient population and a widening circle of

outside support.

Provenance

Recieved from ProQuest

Rights holder

Linda Jane Hansen

File size

314 p.

File format

application/pdf

Language

en

Discipline

Cultural anthropology, Religion

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