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Direct Sales and Direct Faith in Latin America (Contemporary Anthropology of Religion) Hardcover – April 15, 2011

ISBN-13: 978-0230112490 ISBN-10: 0230112498

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Editorial Reviews


"An engagingly written and richly observed ethnography of the rise of direct sales in Mexico ... Cahn's analysis of direct sales fits most clearly into the literature on religious movements, but it also aims to intervene in discussions of political and economic anthropology, especially the role of neoliberal policies and ideologies in developing economies." - POLAR

"Cahn takes two unusual approaches in his book. First, in this ethnography of direct sales, he chooses to focus on a single representative of a single vitamin supplement company - a woman he calls Luisa, who sells Omnilife products in Morelia, Mexico, as well as briefly in Santiago, Chile. Cahn is not the first researcher to take this focus, but this narrow approach continues to be uncommon. However, Cahn demonstrates the possibility for great depth of analysis by sacrificing breadth of sample. Second, he analyzes direct marketing through the theoretical lens of religion. Summing Up: Recommended. All levels/libraries" - CHOICE

"In loving detail, Cahn chronicles how Omnilife has become one of the most visible multi-level marketing schemes in Mexico." - Anthropological Quarterly

"A book of astonishing originality and I recommend it for anyone who is interested in the future of Mexico - el futuro is female, and entrepreneurial, and like nothing we thought we knew." - Richard Rodriguez, author of Days of Obligation: An Argument with my Mexican Father

About the Author

Peter S. Cahn is Director of Faculty Development and Diversity at Boston University.

More About the Author

I am a cultural anthropologist with an interest in how people live religion everyday. Mexico has been the focus of my ethnographic research in part because it encapsulates global trends in economic liberalism and spirit-centered faith. My work has been supported by the Wenner-Gren Institute for Anthropological Research and the Radcliffe Institute for Advanced Study.

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