The anthropology of art is a fast-developing area of intellectual debate and academic study. This beautifully illustrated volume is a unique survey of the current state of anthropological thinking on art and aesthetics. The distinguished contributors draw on contemporary anthropological theory and on classic anthropological topics such as myth and ritual to deepen our understanding of particular aesthetic traditions in their socio-cultural and historical contexts. Many of the essays present new findings based on recent field research in Australia, New Guinea, Indonesia, and Mexico; while others draw on classical anthropological accounts of the Trobriand Islanders of Melanesia and the Nuer of the Southern Sudan to form new arguments and conclusions. The introductory overview of the history of the anthropology of art, by Sir Raymond Firth, makes this volume especially useful for those interested in learning what anthropology has to contribute to our understanding of art and aesthetics in general.