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Frazer's The Golden Bough is available online

This classic study in early anthropology (all in all 12 volumes, I think) is published online as part of Project Gutenberg. del.icio anthropology pointed to the book published on Bartleby's website. But the book can also be downloaded from Sacred Texts-website and Project Gutenberg - without any ads.

Wikipedia on The Golden Bough and amazon reviews
California Digital Library: 61 Free Anthropology Books in fulltext

  14:49:27, by admin   . Categories: culture traditions, Us and Them, Northern America, migration

Collision of cultures? Somali immigrants share New England's small-town values

St.Petersburg Times

As almost 1,400 Somali refugees poured in this nearly all-white New England town, the natives weren't quite sure what to make of them. Here were people who looked different, spoke little English and had little money. And expected this city of 35,000 to find them jobs and places to live.

But these Muslims from Africa, it turned out, shared many of Lewiston's small-town values. The Somalis wanted to raise their kids in a safe, quiet community where faith was important. As both groups discovered, things as simple as potluck dinners and henna hand painting can go a long way toward bridging a vast cultural divide.

Heather Lindkvist, an anthropologist at Bates College, has studied the local Somali migration to Lewiston, Maine.
>> continue

  14:41:28, by admin   . Categories: politics, migration, music

Socially conscious hip-hop is worldwide phenomenon

Canadian Press

Somali-born rapper K'naan says hip-hop records helped him cope with his country's civil war, his adolescence as a refugee and his life as an immigrant in North America. "It's a whole new thing that is happening, even in villages in Africa," said K'naan, whose music touches on everything from personal empowerment to life in Somalia.

Marc Perry, an anthropologist at the University of Illinois, says despite rap's commercialization, socially conscious hip-hop is common among immigrants in the West and black populations in such countries as Brazil and South Africa. That's not surprising given hip-hop's history, Perry said at a recent symposium at Concordia University called Hip-Hop: Culture of Resistance. >> continue


  11:05:43, by admin   . Categories: religion cosmology, culture traditions, Africa

In Egypt: Economy and perceptions of modernity change religious festival

Cairo Magazine

Moulids are multi-faceted festivals held in honor of holy people. The surrounding area is transformed into a festive space that, in the case of large moulids, may engulf an entire neighborhood. Anthropologist Farouk Ahmed Mostafa says, “Moulids have played a large role in invigorating the economic life of the society in which the saint is located.” Moulids also provide an opportunity for reestablishing social contacts with out-of-town friends, he explains.

Times are changing for Egypt’s moulids. Yet the reasons for change are more subtle and complex than the government’s dislike of street merchants or anxiety about crowds. While state policies certainly shape these temporary transformations of public space, shifting shades of religiosity, the economy and perceptions of modernity also contribute to the changing form and character of Egypt’s moulids. >> continue (link updated)


  12:57:37, by admin   . Categories: Us and Them, anthropology (general), persons and theories

Anthropology and Race - Discussions in the Classroom

Interesting thoughts by Alex Golub incl. links to articles.

"I spend a lot of the class slowly unprying my student’s idea of race. “Why are so many african americans professional athletes?” becomes “Why are so many professional athletes african american?” (because there are millions of african americans and very very few professional athletes).

Then I try a thought experiment: if excellence in athletics is explained by genetic endowment, perhaps Australia’s dominance in Rugby League is due to the Australian Rugby gene? Obviously not, say my students, since Australians are white, and our weirdo American intuitions only like genetic explanations for non-white people."

>> continue


AAAs Anthropology News March: Tsunami, Unemployment, Muslims in Thailand

Here are three more articles from the Anthropology News March 2005 by the American Anthropological Association:

Vishvajit Pandya: "When Land Became Water". Tsunami and the Ongees of Little Andaman Island
I had a chance to visit the Ongees in the last weeks of January to find out how my old friends explained the tsunami and what they planned for their future. >> continue

Carrie Lane Chet: Work and Unemployment in the Global Labor Market
Since the fall of 2001, I had been conducting ethnographic fieldwork among unemployed high-technology workers in and around Dallas, Texas. >> continue

Raymond Scupin: Polarized Cultural Stereotypes Contribute to New Violence
The Thai government’s insensitivity toward the people and cultures of South Thailand is undoubtedly one factor contributing to the new violence in this region. >> continue

India is not USA : The Scientific Gender Gap Should Be Understood Comparatively

  11:15:20, by admin   . Categories: technology, Africa, language

First Swahili PC office suite released in Dar es Salaam, Tanzania


The office suite was translated from the English version of OpenOffice.org, an open source suite based on Sun Microsystems' StarOffice. This is the first ever release of a word processor in Swahili. The translation effort required translating 18,000 English strings, made up of one or more words, many of which have previously had no direct Swahili equivalent. As part of the translation, the team developed a glossary of 1500 technical words in Swahili. >> continue


  18:42:23, by admin   . Categories: Asia, gender, journal articles / papers

India is not USA : The Scientific Gender Gap Should Be Understood Comparatively

Carol Mukhopadhyayis, professor of anthropology at San Jose State, Anthropology News March 2005(AAA)

Drawing upon ethnographic and questionnaire data from four urban areas in India, I took a comparative look at the scientific gender gap. My Indian expert consultants reject American notions of gendered brains, of mathematics as inherently “masculine” and cannot understand why American girls fear academic success or experience gender identity conflicts from excelling in mathematics.

Comparative research raises questions about the applicability of American theories to the scientific gender gap in the US. It suggests that these applications are mired in taken-for-granted American cultural models of gender and causality that prevent us from seeing alternative theories.

American expert models are virtually devoid of social context. Individuals appear to select activities, academic subjects, and occupations in a social void, in a world of infinite choices. >> continue (link updated)

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