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Spring 2010 AnthroNotes Online + Video Podcast

A new issue of AnthroNotes is now online (download pdf). Managing editor Ann Kaupp notes, “In celebration of the opening of a new Human Origins Hall at the Smithsonian’s Natural History Museum, the spring issue of AnthroNotes is a special, expanded issue focused entirely on human origins.” It includes articles by Human Origins Program Director Rick Potts, AnthroNotes editor and Smithsonian research associate Alison S. Brooks (GWU),  and Human Origins Program education and outreach specialist Briana Pobiner. Also see the NMNH Dept. of Anthro. webpage for back issues of AnthroNotes and staff video podcasts.

Annual Meeting Video: Human No More

Human No More: Digital Subjectivities, Un-Human Subjects and the End of Anthropology

The AAA thanks Aaron Shapiro (UPenn) for kindly volunteering his time to record this session. Neil Whitehead (U. Wisconsin – Madison) and Michael Wesch (Kansas State U.) also deserve praise for organizing the panel and helping secure its place on the web.

The audio is a little low, so you may need to turn your volume up.

Zeynep Tufekci (U. Maryland, Baltimore County) “The Tenacious Body: Surveillance, Triangulation, and the Collapsing of Contexts in Online Social Networking Sites”

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Continue reading

AAA Members in the News

AAA member David Harvey (CUNY) was recently featured on BBC 4′s Thinking Allowed discussing today’s financial crises.

Harvey says:

Capital is the lifeblood that flows through the body politic of all those societies we call capitalist, spreading out, sometimes as a trickle and other times as a flood, into every nook and cranny of the inhabited world.

Also, Lisa Lucero (UIUC) discusses a new theory of Mayan rituals on MSNBC:

Ancient Mayans farmers, builders and servants left records of their daily lives with the objects they embedded in the floors and walls of their homes during rituals in which their houses were burned down and then rebuilt… “But the commoners had their own way of recording their own history, not only their history as a family, but also their place in the cosmos,” said Lisa Lucero…

Finally, Dr. Kathleen Ryan of the University of Pennsylvania Museum of Archaeology and Anthropology is leading a team of colleagues at the the Laikipia Archaeological Project in North Central Kenya.  They are keeping a running blog about their daily adventures.

Inside the President’s Studio: João Biehl


(click to listen)

Hosted by AAA President Virginia R. Dominguez, “Inside the President’s Studio” features interviews with anthropologists about their ideas, research and passions. It is part of an ongoing effort to foster public, visible and active engagement with anthropologists. Become a part of the conversation by reading and listening to the interviews, adding your comments to the blog, and suggesting people or topics for future pieces.

This month’s guest is Princeton anthropologist João Biehl, the award-winning author of Vita: Life in a Zone of Social Abandonment (U California Press 2005) and Will to Live: AIDS Therapies and the Politics of Survival (Princeton U Press 2007).  He discusses his upbringing in Brazil, the importance of education for underprivileged youth , and the many strengths of anthropology. Listeners are also treated to a fascinating account of his work with Catarina and her family in Vita, as well as his thoughts on writing and art.

João’s written responses are copied below:  Continue reading

Free Anthropology Podcasts from ISCA and AAA

Earlier this year, Oxford’s Institute of Social and Cultural Anthropology launched a set of anthropology podcasts, available through both their webpage and iTunes. Featured content ranges from departmental seminars with guest speakers such as Jane K Cowan (U Sussex), Adam Frank (U Central Arkansas), and Tania Murray Li (U Toronto); to nutritional and medical anthropology seminars; to a special lecture by Gillian Tett, contributor to the October 2009 “Economic Crisis” issue of Anthropology News (pdf).

For those who have not yet heard, AAA also has a new podcast series, “Inside the President’s Studio,” where AAA President Virginia Dominguez interviews anthropologists about their passions, ideas, research and activities, especially where they have current and public (or public sphere) implications.

Inside the President’s Studio: Carolyn Sargent


(click to listen)

Hosted by AAA President Virginia R. Dominguez, “Inside the President’s Studio” features interviews with anthropologists about their ideas, research and passions. It is part of an ongoing effort to foster public, visible and active engagement with anthropologists. Become a part of the conversation by reading and listening to the interviews, adding your comments to the blog, and suggesting people or topics for future pieces.

This month’s guest is medical anthropologist and past SMA president Carolyn Sargent.  She discusses her efforts to bring the expertise of medical anthropologists to the national health care debate and a recent meeting she had with Rep. Russ Carnahan (D-MO) on the issue.  Listeners will also learn about Carolyn’s love for piano and detective fiction, her training in anthropology under Max Gluckman, her Peace Corps experience, academic life, and a number of other topics.

Carolyn’s written responses are copied below: Continue reading

Introducing “Inside the President’s Studio”


(click to listen)

AAA President Virginia Dominguez is pleased to bring you the first of many Inside the President’s Studio podcasts. This month she interviews Monica Heller, AAA Executive Program Chair for the 2010 annual meeting in New Orleans. Monica discusses growing up in Montreal, her path to linguistics, politics in Canada, the representation of Francophones in the Winter Olympics, her research on nationalism, the internationalization of anthropology, the annual meeting, and several other topics.

Introducing “Inside the President’s Studio”
Virginia Dominguez

I became an anthropologist because of the first anthropologists I met, the kind of people they seemed to be, and the lives I spotted them leading. The content of their university courses fascinated me, but the impact of those courses did not stop there. I found myself wanting to get to know the instructors as people. They tended to be down-to-earth and to live their lives often a bit “off-center.” Their worldliness made me feel at home. Their combination of intensity, warmth, knowledge, insight and frequent social and political critique made them people I genuinely liked and wanted to emulate. Continue reading

Annual Meeting Podcast: War and Counter-Counterinsurgency

War and Counter-Counterinsurgency: Demilitarizing Anthropology and U.S. Society
(click to listen)

On December 5, 2009,  the Network of Concern Anthropologists (NCA) held a session at the AAA Annual Meeting in Philadelphia to discuss some of the issues they raised in their recently released Counter-Counterinsurgency Manual. The session was chaired and recorded by David Vine, assistant professor of anthropology at American University and a founding member of the NCA.

Panelists/Discussants: Roberto Gonzalez; David Price; Andrew Bickford; Gregory Feldman; Dylan Kerrigan; Catherine Besteman; Catherine Lutz; Nancy Scheper-Hughes

Session Abstract
Anthropology and “cultural knowledge” have become much trumpeted tools in the U.S. military’s wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. In addition to the widely criticized Human Terrain Team program, the Pentagon drew on anthropology and anthropological concepts in the writing of its new Counterinsurgency Field Manual. Continue reading

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