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AnthroCurrents – July 12, 2016

Anthropologists Comment on Brexit and Other Policy Issues

Brexit artwork

“Brexit” from Allegra Lab (http://allegralaboratory.net/brexit-europe-and-anthropology-time-to-say-something/)

Social Anthropology/Athropologie Sociale and Allegra Laboratory partnered to provide a forum for over two dozen anthropologists to comment on Brexit. They published extracts on July 1st and expect to post the full texts by July 15th. To add to the mix, Vidya Venkat, a staff journalist for The Hindu, returns to her fieldwork in anthropology to comment on Brexit.

David Vine, Assistant Professor of Anthropology at American University, notes the irony in self-determination through Brexit for most Britons versus the forced displacement of of Indian Ocean Islanders by American and British governments in the 1960s to create the American naval base on the island of Diego Garcia. He advocates for their return as the United Kingdom Supreme Court considers the case this summer.

Elsewhere in policy, anthropologist and foreign policy columnist Conn M. Hallinan is interviewed about the United Nation’s controversial decision to remove Saudi Arabia from the list of children’s rights violators. 

What do you think about this policy? The Guardian reports that experts in Brazil’s Department of Indigenous Affairs (FUNAI) recommend no contact with tribal peoples believed to have no previous contact with the outside world. They specifically disagree with anthropologists Robert S. Walker, University of Missouri, and Kim R. Hill, Arizona State University, who last year advocated for “controlled contact.” 

Local Press for Anthropologists

“No one listens to us!” Really? Actually, anthropologists appear, for example, in local press around the globe in a variety of contexts: in Jamaica, a profile of native son Dr. Jovan Scott Lewis, Assistant Professor at University of California, Berkeley; in Idaho, a report of grant funds for Idaho State University Professor Katherine Reedy; in Illinois, a social history tour led by Jane Adams, Professor Emeritus, Southern Illinois University; in Utica, New Yorkcomments on immigrant assimilation by Kathryn Stam, Associate Professor of Anthropology, SUNY Polytechnic Institute; and in Belfast, Ireland, anthropology graduate students protest comments and policies of the University Chancellor.

Ethnographic Work on Work

And now back to work. Melissa Beresford, Anthropology Ph.D. Candidate at Arizona State University, completes research on social construction of “entrepreneurship” in South Africa. Research on “ghost workers” by Dr. Sarah Horton, University of Denver Professor of Anthropology, appears in Quartzoriginally published in Anthropology of Work Review.

Of Interest to Anthropologists

The Washington Post published a photo essay on the “world’s largest matrilineal society.”





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