Communicating in Times of Crisis

It started with people tagging me on Facebook, during the first few days of the family separation crisis at the US–Mexico border. Concerned friends drew my attention to legal aid groups who were working at the border, asking if anyone could find interpreters for lesser-spoken and indigenous languages.

Euphemisms for the Global Other

I recently attended a conference in Copenhagen about sustainable consumption where I kept hearing “the Global South” used to refer to poor people in general, to low income countries, and the continents of Africa and South America.

Creators of the Contemporary in Africa

In Ghana, creative culture and the contemporary art sphere is in a period of exponential growth and refiguration. Across Accra and Kumasi, the contemporary creative scene has been growing at an unprecedented rate since 2011–pervading public spaces, transportation infrastructure, historical sites, and online social networks such as Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter. In the absence of support structures for the arts, many artists and institutions have begun using urban public spaces as creative venues and substantive mediums for producing and displaying art.

Reclaiming “Allahu Akbar” from Semantic Pejoration

Allāhu akbar, the Arabic phrase meaning “God is the greatest,” has gained connotations in US public discourse that differ vastly from its meaning among Muslims. Understanding this process may be the first step to reclaiming its positive connotations.

Dancing with the Spirits

Mexico today is gripped by a major sense of despair. The country has become an open field for massive extractive industries, particularly mining and fracking. The so-called war on drugs, has dragged on for over more than a decade and wrecked regional economies, causing widespread migration across and out of the country.

Biocommensurations

Any kind of anthropological future is enmeshed with the future of the people that we study. In my case, these people are psychiatrists. News-style answers to the question of what lies ahead might feature big data, artificial intelligence, or wearable technologies. Yet psychiatry’s future is also more uncertain at the moment than it had been in a long time.

What’s in Your Bag, Anthropologists?

From the Andean highlands to Appalachia, anthropologists from across the discipline open their field bags to reveal favorite pens, recording equipment, emergency granola bars, and—of course—scarves.

Ambivalent Spaces in the (Neo)Liberal Arts

What is the future of anthropology at liberal arts colleges in the United States? In this late capitalist era of unprecedented college costs, student loan debt, and economic uncertainty, the dominant narrative that the role of a college education is to ensure future financial success is understandable, and one to which colleges must respond.

Inside the Annual Meeting Scheduling Process

The American Anthropological Association’s (AAA) 2018 Annual Meeting in San José is on the horizon, and we couldn’t be more excited for the dynamic and diverse collection of presentations, sessions, and other events we have planned. The theme, Resistance, Resilience, and Adaptation: Change in the Anthropological Imagination, is a timely response to our current global political moment.

Written in Blood

When I was sent a link to a Snopes article  asking, “Did DNA Testing Companies Admit to Altering Tests to ‘Screw with Racists’?” (2017), I knew that my research had become “fake news.” Even though I spent years at UCLA’s Institute for Society and Genetics with professors Aaron Panofsky and Christopher Kelty researching the use of DNA ancestry tests by white supremacists, I was not immune from becoming a vector for online propaganda and conspiracy theories.