AnthroCurrents – October 4, 2016

A roundup of Anthropology in the News for September 2016.

On the National Scene
Anthropologists and the American Anthropological Association are among those opposing the Dakota Access Pipeline.

CNN continues to offer its version of “political anthropology” of the US election season, this time on Long Island. Still no anthropologists in sight.

The Army War College cemetery in Carlisle, PA, contains the remains of native Alaskans. And while there is a story there, the recent chapter involves the controversy of repatriation.

Discussion of how kuru spread among the Fore of Papua New Guinea is not just a classic of medical anthropology, but now the back story to current research on prions and chronic wasting disease in North American deer.

A lecture series at the University of Pennsylvania Museum focusing on their collection of human skulls collected by Samuel Morton, “scientific father of racism.” The series is designed to create a conversation about race, science, and history.

Looking Beyond US Borders
Ghassan Hage (U. of Melbourne) publishes an open letter to the Anthropological Association of Israel, declining to speak at their annual meeting.

The Irish Times reviews JCH King’s Blood and Land: the Story of Native North America, a non-chronological account of first peoples of this continent.

A short report appears in the Jakarta Post about changing economic development for some rural residents of Papua New Guinea from “arbitrary” administrative districts to “cultural” districts used by the Dutch in the 1930s.

The Malay Mail introduces readers to anthropologist Leyla Jagiella (Bayreuth U., Germany), a speaker at the Cooler Lumpur Festival, exploring LGBTQ issues in Kaula Lumpur.

The Local Beat
A local newspaper in Britain reviews an ethnography of the London 2012 Olympics that focuses on the politics and legacy of those games, by Gillian Evans (U. of Manchester).

A local journalist in southern Mississippi shares an appreciation of John Lee “Junior” Doughty, blues and juke joint ethnographer and creator of the “most Entertaining Online Ethnography” according to the Smithsonian Institution.

Applying Anthropology
A primer on how ethnography is one of the key tools in design for the Internet of Things.

A schedule landed in September for the late October conference at U. of California, San Diego, Ethnography and Design: Mutual Provocations. This is the annual conference of a U. of California system-wide collaboration on ethnography and design, CoLED.

From “design and anthropology” to fashion-and-anthropology, via a discourse on cargo shorts. It is as good a place to start as any.

The world of modern art, architecture, and anthropology intersect in a live event and book, Beyond the Square: Urbanism and the Arab Uprsisings. Anchored by anthropologists, the edited volume includes contributions from artist Julie Mehretu and other scholars.

An “institutional ethnography” about ITT Technical Institute by sociologist Tressie McMillan (Virginia Commonwealth University) coincides with ITT’s demise. Read more about the soon-to-be published book here.

A university’s online profile of Emir Estrada (Arizona State U.) points to her work on how children experience immigration.

An interview with Dana Walrath (Vermont College of Medicine), a medical anthropologist reflecting on her experience with her mother’s Alzheimer’s disease in a new book.

Anthropology in Perspective
Paul Shankman (Emeritus, U. of Colorado) offers a quiz on the popularity of anthropology in the 1960s and 1970s. How will you do?

Vertamae Smart-Grosvenor (1937-2016), hosting the public television show “Soul!” on WNET Channel 13 in 1971. Photo by Chester Higgins Jr.

A New York Times obituary for culinary anthropologist, artist, and social commentator Vertamae Smart-Grosevenor (1937-2016).

Obituaries for anthropologist Elizabeth Colson, 1917-2016, (U. of California, Berkeley), who died at her home in Zamiba, from UC Berkeley and (behind a pay wall) The Wall Street Journal.

Around the Academy
Nazia Kazi, Stockton U., published an article in The Chronicle of Higher Education on “Teaching Against Islamophobia in the Age of Terror,” and is interviewed about the article as well.

The Texas Tech U. campus newspaper profiles “tattoo anthropologist” Lars Krutak ( during a campus visit.

University of Texas at San Antonio interviews an undergraduate anthropology student, Christopher Brown, about his love of and study of coffee, starting in Texas and China.

Anthropology Blogs—Additions (see original list, 9/20/2016)
A monthly roundup of scholarly articles on crime, law and punishment around the world from a blog anchored by anthropologists, anthropoliteia.

AnthroCurrents is a biweekly look at how the world sees anthropology. Add your comments below, or send tips and links on our Contact Us page. Follow on Twitter (@NapaAnthro), Facebook (@NAPA.Anthro), or LinkedIn (National Association for the Practice of Anthropology).

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