CNN/ CBS News
-- For 12-year-old Anju Sharma, hope for a better life arrives in her poor farming village three days a week on a bicycle rickshaw that carries a computer with a high-speed, wireless Internet connection.
Designed like temple carriages that bear Hindu deities during festivals, the brightly painted pedal-cart rolls into her village in India's most populous state, accompanied by a computer instructor who gives classes to young and old, students and teachers alike.
The bicycle cart is the center of a project called "Infothela," or info-cart. It aims to use technology to improve education, health care and access to agricultural information in India's villages, where most of the country's 1.06 billion people live. >> continue
(via Danny Yee's Blog)
What is Chinese cultural heritage? How do we pass it on to the next generation, particularly as it changes in the context of U.S. society? These are issues shared by many adoptive Chinese families and Chinese American families.
Since 2000, Dr. Andrea Louie, a cultural anthropologist from Michigan State University, has been interviewing St. Louis area families who have adopted from China. Her research focuses on whether, how, and why adoptive families teach their children about China and Chinese culture. She conducts her research by participating in adoption-related events, such as those organized by local adoption agencies and by the St. Louis chapter of Families with Children from China. She also interviews adoptive families about their adoption stories and attitudes toward China and Chinese culture. >> continue
The Piraha of the Amazon have almost legendary status in language research. They have no words at all for number. They use only only three words to count: one, two, many. To make things confusing, the words for one and two, in Piraha, are the same syllable, pronounced with a falling or rising inflection.
And to make things really difficult, the word for one can sometimes mean "roughly one", and the word for two can sometimes mean "not many". The Piraha have puzzled anthropologists for decades.
Peter Gordon, a behavioural scientist at Columbia University in New York, reports in Science today that the Piraha may may not be very good at counting because because they do not have the words for it. >> continue
Zaman Daily, Turkey
Being the meeting point for many peoples and cultures in global tourism activity, Antalya and its environs are turning into a permanent homeland. People from different cultures, nations and with different mentalities, continuously buy land in Antalya, choosing it as their second homeland. Like a junction, Turkey is hosting a new sociological structure that came along with globalization >>continue
Go Asia Pacific
The Alele Museum in the Marshall Islands has joined with the Historical Preservation Office to launch a new internet website, in English and Marshallese. The aim is to make Alele's collection more accessible to students, researchers and the wider public. In the Marshalls, cultural officers are working to protect fragile records of the past, like the De Brum collection, thousands of etched glass plates, with pictures of Micronesia from past centuries. >>continue (link updated)
Cape Times, South Africa
Dr Cecil Helman, born in Cape Town, is a family practitioner, anthropologist and the author of the widely used text book Cultural Dimensions of Illness used in all major universities in Britain and over 120 medical schools in America. He believes the Western medical model is insufficient and traditional medicine is slowly and surely going up a cul-de-sac.
According to Helman, reductionism is at the core of modern medicine and is driving it into a lung, a heart or an artery and away from a whole person. It reduces the complex idea of human suffering down to the disease of a particular organ, distorting the picture as it does. >>continue
"COMMUNITY PARTICIPATION" and "Community managed and government supported" approaches are buzzwords in the realm of development cooperation. The discourse on gender analysis in development planning has contributed to an increasing interest in women and water management issues.
This book attempts a historical analysis of gender by describing the prominent role played by women in the Tehbaga and Naxalbari agrarian peasant movements that swept the three districts of the small-scale irrigation projects. The volume should contribute to the ongoing theoretical debate in women's studies and feminist anthropology on how to achieve an optimal "gender planning" with the aim to strengthen and/or to empower women in developmental interventions. >>continue
The Dallas Morning News
If they lean back in the chair, away from him, he's got more work to do. But if they lean forward, he knows in a few minutes they'll be huddled with him over a contract. "There's so much you can glean from observing the distances between people when they interact," says Dr. William Pulte, anthropologist, linguist and associate professor in Southern Methodist University's Education Department.
Proxemics, the study of how people perceive and use the space around them, was founded in the 1950s by anthropologist Edward T. Hall, and popularized in several of his books – "The Silent Language" (1959) and "The Hidden Dimension" (1966). Hall observed that humans like to keep their distances from one another, and that those distances vary according to social interactions. >>continue