By Femke Brandt
Picture a tourist lodge elevated on wooden stilts somewhere in the South-African wilderness and imagine it is dinnertime. The dark sky is filled with countless bright yellow stars. African waiters walk up and down to serve guests who have just returned from an evening game drive where they possibly spotted a leopard in a tree or a zebra drinking at a watering hole. This text is a fictional dialogue in the place just described. It zooms in on an exchange between two individuals in that setting, on that particular summer night. They discuss and theorize trophy-hunting practices in South Africa based on insights from recent ethnographic material presented in scientific circles. The speakers are the sociologist Norbert Elias and novelist Elizabeth Costello.
This article by Femke Brandt was originally published in Amsterdam Social Science Volume4 Issue 2 (2012). Click here for the complete article.