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09/07/04

Inuit play makes fun of anthropologists

Nunatsiaq News

Erin Brubacher, who, with Odile Nelson, is co-directing and acting in the play in Iqaluit this weekend, says this is a play that "fits with the community". "The issues involved are universal: interracial marriage, the concept of cultural appropriation, political correctness...," Taylor says. "Many Native issues are cross-cultural."

One of the themes in the play involves a group of kids on a reserve who are visited by a group of anthropologists researching traditional legends. None of the elders will talk to the anthropologists, so instead, the kids told them the legends their grandparents had told them, in some cases making them up for 50 cents a legend.

The play not only makes fun of the anthropologists, but also the kids who made up the stories, and "how a trick can come back and trick you," as Taylor puts it. >>continue

08/07/04

A personal look at anthropology

Kenai Peninsula Online (Alaska)

Generations of anthropologists have appeared in Alaska Native villages and attempted, with varying degrees of tact, naivete or insight, to explain the villagers' lives. Margaret B. Blackman who teaches anthropology at the State University of New York College at Brockport parts in "Upside Down: Seasons among the Nunamiut," from typical scholarly writing to create a book of essays that read more like personal memoir than academic treatise.

" ... I tired of academic writing," she says in her introduction. " ... I became increasingly irritated with the uncanny ability of so many anthropologists to render, in stilted prose, the most interesting cultures hopelessly pedantic and unappealing. I wanted to write differently about Anaktuvuk Pass." The result is a beautifully written exploration of an anthropologist's life as well as a portrait of the remote Nunamiut village in the Brooks Range. >>continue

When cultures shape technology - Interview with Genevieve Bell

Tom's Hardware Guide

Tech firms flood consumers which new products every month. In an interview with Tom's Hardware Guide, Intel's anthropologist Genevieve Bell explains why cultures will determine the development of new products. Dell initiated at Intel a new way to think about the connection between people and technology, their cultural practices and "daily habits," she says. Rather than innovating and then trying to make people use products, the idea is to start with people and their needs first and learn what individual cultures care about. >>continue (updated link)

Anthropologist tries to fathom how advertisers can approach today's youth

Business Week

Timothy Malefyt is now an in-house anthropologist for BBDO New York, the advertising firm. His mission is to study a group of college students at Columbia University and figure out how in the world they process all of the information that comes their way, whether it's from TV, movies, billboards, video games, cell phones, the Internet -- just about everything but the fortunes wrapped inside Chinese cookies.

If a college student receives a targeted ad on her instant messaging (IM) screen, or a text message on her cell phone, is she likely to resent it? Consider it a joke? Would certain types of advertisements be welcomed? The answers depend, from an anthropologist's perspective, on the communications rituals associated with each of these tools. >>continue / copy

07/07/04

  22:05:13, by admin   . Categories: religion cosmology, migration, Caribbean

Haiti: Possessed by Voodoo

National Geographic

The ceremony begins with a Roman Catholic prayer. Then three drummers begin to play syncopated rhythms. The attendees begin to dance around a tree in the center of the yard, moving faster and harder with the rising pulse of the beat. The priest draws sacred symbols in the dust with cornmeal, and rum is poured on the ground to honor the spirits. In Haiti these rituals are commonplace: Voodoo is the dominant religion.

It was easy to meld the two faiths, because there are many similarities between Roman Catholicism and voodoo. Participation in voodoo ritual reaffirms one's relationships with ancestors, personal history, community relationships—and the cosmos. >>continue

Hmong: An Endangered People

University of California, Center for Southeast Asian Studies

There are more Hmong people today than Tibetans, yet the campaign to "Free Tibet" is widely popular in the U.S. and is internationally recognized, while the plight of Hmong people is relatively unknown. With this challenge, Dr. Eric Crystal introduced his lecture for the Center for Southeast Asian Studies on the UCLA campus. Eric Crystal is an anthropologist who has researched highland Southeast Asian cultures for over three decades.

The Hmong have had a long and distinctive history in China. Over the centuries they migrated south so that today they are dispersed throughout the highlands of southern China and northern Southeast Asia, including in Laos and Vietnam >>continue

  20:01:51, by admin   . Categories: politics, anthropology (general), persons and theories, music

The Rediff Interview/Nandini Chattopadhyay: Music and Protest

Rediff India

"I was doing my first major anthropology project studying the Baul protest movement and how it used music to talk about injustice, superstitions and hypocrisy. In Brazil too some of its most popular music and dance started in the ghettos as a protest against colonial rule and later against social inequities in general."

"Anthropology is what I do in my everyday life. In addition to living in India, I have lived in Singapore, Montreal, Canada and San Francisco. I have also traveled extensively across Asia and Europe. Learning different languages, philosophies, belief systems and social codes of conduct are what I have been doing as part of my everyday life. Being an anthropologist is somewhat of a continuation of that" >>continue

  13:58:04, by admin   . Categories: corporate & business anthropology, websites

Ideas Bazaar - Ethnography and Consultancy

London based research-based strategy consultancy using ethnograhic methods. "Ethnographic research is highly suited to telling us what we don't know about a given subject: it can tell us what really happens and how your product or service really fits into people's lives. It's good for bringing lives to life: generating intimacy but also new perspectives."

Check their articles and weblog!

>>continue

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