© 2017

Time Blind

Problems in Perceiving Other Temporalities

  • Challenges the commonplace assumptions about time which limit our imagination

  • Explores contemporary concepts of time through an anthropological perspective

  • Features discussions about chronobiology, labor-time, chronology, and the imagination of the future


About this book


This book explores how modern concepts of time constrain our understanding of temporal diversity. Time is a necessary and pervasive dimension of scholarship, yet rarely have the cultural assumptions about time been explored.  This book looks at how anthropology--a discipline known for the study of cultural, linguistic, historical, and biological variation and differences--is blind to temporalities outside of the logics of European-derived ideas about time.  While the argument focuses primarily on anthropology, its points can be applied to other fields in the sciences, humanities, and social sciences.  


Anthropology of Time Sociology of Time Temporal diversity History of Science Culture and Society Chronobiology

Authors and affiliations

  1. 1.Department of AnthropologyQueens College, CUNYFlushingUSA

About the authors

Kevin K. Birth is Professor of Anthropology at Queens College of the City University of New York, USA.  He is the author of numerous articles and several books about time. 

Bibliographic information


“A pivotal intervention into interdisciplinary research on time. Birth expertly demonstrates that assumptions about time have impeded scholarship across a wide range of disciplines. The implications of failing to reflect on the hegemony of Western concepts of time are convincingly drawn out, including the unwitting reproduction of ethnocentrisms. This book insists on the diverse and contentious heritage of time, calling on researchers to re-examine their presuppositions and engage more deeply with the complexities of time.” (Michelle Bastian, Chancellor’s Fellow, University of Edinburgh, Scotland)