This book is filled with unique anecdotes and rich ethnographic details. Shlossberg convincingly argues that the imposition of stereotypical ethnic indigenous traits on mask makers and other craftspeople is linked to national and transnational processes of racialized subordination, marginalization and exclusion.
—International Journal of Communication
Crafting Identities is an innovative text that is both theoretically sophisticated and methodologically sound.
—Canadian Journal of Latin American and Caribbean Studies
Crafting Identity is an important book precisely because it presents a hard, if controversial, look at how institutional structures create and maintain distinctions about what is art, what is craft, who is worthy of attention and who is not—which has real material consequences for the people whose culture is there to be collected, displayed and sold. Museum professionals and budding material culture scholars may be unnerved by the criticisms presented here, but it is a necessary conversation.
—Museum Anthropology Review
This is a very special, innovative, solid, useful piece of scholarship. It has the potential to be pathbreaking in its field and beyond, particularly because of its narrative style, engaged critical approach, and nuanced and thoroughly researched ethnography. When I read it, I felt very inspired by it.
—Carmen Martínez Novo, author of Who Defines Indigenous?: Identities, Development, Intellectuals, and the State in Northern Mexico
One of the advantages of ethnography is that it delivers complex ideas, often heavily theoretical, through highly readable narratives. Shlossberg does precisely this, which means that his work can be taught easily. This is one of the best examples of what sociologist Anthony Giddens calls structuration theory, which proposes that actions are embedded in social structures and simultaneously evidence of social agency.
—Hector Amaya, author of Citizenship Excess: Latino/as, Media, and the Nation