How We Protest

Lord knows we need to protest. There are so many issues on which we, as anthropologists, need to be heard. It is hard to know where to begin. In our degraded political climate, where truth and knowledge are devalued, and the values we all stand for: opposition to racism, openness, diversity, protection of individual civil […]

When the Discourse of Theater Trumps Truth

The unbalanced application of interpretive frames—viewing Trump primarily through the discourse of theater and Clinton primarily through the discourse of truth—may partially explain the staggering results of pre-election polls that ranked Trump higher than Clinton on honesty.

Coming Full Circle

The Anthropology of Practice, the Practice of Anthropology  Introducing New Editors for Public Policy Column Despite my love of teaching, the precariousness of adjuncting, was wearing on me, as was the academic job search. I began looking for other options, other ways I could use my PhD. Nothing in my academic training prepared me for […]

Politics as Archaeological Action

Archaeologists should contemplate entering politics. Recent articles in The Atlantic and The New York Times show they won’t be alone among those with a scientific bent seeking office. Both articles describe a political action group called 314 Action created to support scientists contemplating a move into politics, and they feature some scientists considering leaving their careers […]

Academic Freedom in an Age of Populism

It only took five days for the assault on academic freedom in an age of populism to materialize in the US. And that it came in the form of censoring scientists working for the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA),  an agency which bafflingly enough will be led by a nominee who cares so little about environmental […]

The Superpower of a Super Sport

    If anthropology’s job is to make the strange familiar and the familiar strange, then what should anthropologists make of sports like American football? The approaching Super Bowl, the annual championship spectacle of the National Football League, which will take place Sunday, February 5th, is familiar to most Americans, but may be strange to […]

Diversity and Inclusion and the Rise of the Alt-Right

Diversity refers to the variety of similarities and differences among people. Inclusion is a dynamic state of operating in which diversity is leveraged to create a fair, healthy, and high-performing organization or community. The above definitions were taken from the Global Diversity & Inclusion Benchmarks: Standards for Organizations Around the World, an 80-page tool created […]

How Plausibly Deniable Is It?

We are accustomed to watching politicians play the language game of plausible deniability, but Donald Trump takes this game to a new level. As Kira Hall, Donna M. Goldstein, and Matthew Bruce Ingram propose, Trump’s gestural-rich “bodily displays, together with Trump’s easy deniability of what he intended by them, suggests that comedic gesture may accomplish […]

From Erdoğan’s Turkey to Trump’s America

Since signing a petition to end state violence against Kurds in southeast Turkey, academics critical of the Turkish regime have come under increased scrutiny. These “dopey academics” as the Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan referred to them join other critics as public enemies of the New Turkey. Their names, photos and institutional affiliation circulate the social […]

Public Anthropology in an Attention Economy

The selected theme for the AAA’s Annual Meeting in Washington DC from November 29 to December 3 2017 is simply Anthropology Matters.  And it sure does—at least if you happen to be an anthropologist. But this theme also inevitably raises the question as to exactly why anthropology matters—and to whom. This is of course in no way a new […]