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Matto Groso and the Hoax

In this guest post Ann Kaupp, at the Smithsonian Institute, shares with you an interesting tale of the filming of a 1931 University of Pennsylvania anthropological expedition – Matto Grosso.

The Human Studies Film Archives joined the University of Pennsylvania Museum in returning to the São Lourenço Bororo people in the Brazilian village of Tadarimana DVD copies of the only surviving films from a 1931 film project considered to be one of the first synchronous sound ethnographic film projects after the advent of sound technology.  In 2010 archivists at HSFA and Penn Museum discovered that HSFA had the only known existing copy of The Hoax, one of the films made from the University of Pennsylvania sponsored 1931 Matto Grosso expedition.  In 2011 HSFA worked with the University of Pennsylvania Museum, which archives what remains of this filming project, to issue this film and the only other existing film from this project on DVD.  Recently, the Brazilian anthropologist, Dr. Sylvia Caiuby Novaes worked with members of the  São Lourenço Bororo people to translate the sound.  Click here, to view the Penn Museum’s blog post on the translation and the earlier blog post on the discovery of the film.

There is also a clip attached to the SIRIS catalog record.

Dr. Claudia Valeggia honored with Presidential Early Career Award for Scientists and Engineers

Congratulations to biological anthropologist and AAA member, Dr. Claudia Valeggia. The Associate Professor of Anthropology at the University of Pennsylvania will be honored with a Presidential Early Career Award for Scientists and Engineers on October 14.

The award is the highest honor bestowed by the United States government on science and engineering professionals in the early stages of their independent research careers. Awardees are selected for their pursuit of innovative research at the frontiers of science and technology and their commitment to community service as demonstrated through scientific leadership, public education or community outreach.

The work for which Valeggia received the PECASE award was funded by the National Science Foundation and involves a group of Toba indigenous women and girls living in the province of Formosa in Argentina. The ongoing project aims to better understand three key life transitions: the move from infancy to childhood, puberty and menopause.  Valeggia and her colleagues take monthly measurements and other physiological data from the participants to chart physical changes in their lives.

Learn more about Dr. Valeggia’s work here.

Read the Presidential press release here.


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