To all appearances, Turkey is caught in a fierce battle between secularist and Muslim sectors of the population, with one side accusing the other of heavy-handed imposition of its own values and practices. What is clear is that since the 1980s a new "self-consciously" Muslim elite has mounted a powerful political and economic challenge to the traditional secular elite. In doing so, it has developed an alternative unorthodox definition of the nation based on a nostalgic revival of Turkey's Ottoman past, pushing aside the Republican model. The outcome has been revolutionary in its transformation of Turkish society and politics, but this transformation does not map neatly onto our expectations of what "secular" and "Muslim" mean.
Up to half of the world's 6,500 languages spoken today may be extinct by the end of this century. If undocumented, these tongues--each representing a unique insight into human cognition and its most powerful defining feature, language--risk disappearing without trace.
Facilitated by an infusion of funding from philanthropic sources, descriptive linguists have been galvanized to document many of the world's languages before they vanish without record. As a result, scholars are entering into increasingly collaborative partnerships with speech communities, producing documents that have both local relevance and academic integrity.
The growth in access to digital recording technology has also ensured that contemporary research initiatives on endangered languages are not only born digital, but often birthed straight into an archive. Yet heritage collections of recordings made by previous generations of fieldworkers are ever more endangered, becoming orphaned when their collectors die or fragmented into their component parts based on the medium of documentation when they are finally archived.
Drawing on two decades of research in Nepal, and reflecting on time spent directing digital humanities research initiatives, I discuss how linguists and anthropologists are collecting, protecting and connecting their data, and how technology is increasingly influencing their relationship to their research subjects.
For 30 years health surveys have shown that a woman's school attainment is consistently associated with reduced child mortality and other positive health outcomes in less developed countries, even with socioeconomic factors held constant, but the process involved has been a mystery to survey researchers. The talk will draw on our book, Literacy and Mothering (2012), presenting evidence from Mexico, Nepal, Venezuela and Zambia to support the theory that girls learn and retain from classroom experience the bureaucratic literacy skills that they use as mothers to interact with the health media and health bureaucracy. We will discuss the implications of these results for policy and for further work on health literacy and health navigation skills that takes educational research, particularly literacy assessment, seriously.
Robert A. LeVine is Roy E. Larsen Professor of Education and Human Development, Emeritus, at Harvard University, where he was also Professor of Anthropology. He received the 2001 Distinguished Achievement Award from the American Educational Research Association and the 1997 Career Contributions Award from the Society for Psychological Anthropology. His recent books include Psychological Anthropology: A Reader on Self and Culture (2010, Wiley-Blackwell) and Anthropology and Child Development: A Cross-Cultural Reader (with Rebecca New, 2008, Wiley-Blackwell).
Sarah LeVine was born in England and met her husband in Nigeria where she was a VSO (the British Peace Corps) and he was doing research. She was educated at Oxford, the University of Chicago and Harvard from which she received her PhD. and where she was research associate in the Graduate School of Education for 27 years. She has done field research on four continents and learned and mostly forgotten 14 languages. Her books include Mothers & Wives: Gusii Women of East Africa; Dolor Y Alegria: Women & Social Change in Urban Mexico; The Saint of Kathmandu and Rebuilding Buddhism (with David Gellner). The LeVines have worked on the problem of how women's schooling affects reproduction (mortality and fertility) since 1980, with Sarah as primary field worker in Mexico and Nepal and field coordinator of the project as a whole that included studies in Venezuela and Zambia. Prior to the new book, they have published articles on the separate field studies in journals of health, education and population studies.
The renewed interest among climatologists on the effects of climate change in South Asia , a topic long set aside by Harappan specialists, demands closer examination in view of the socio-ecological variability now known to exist among its centers, regions, and adaptations. Claims that climatological events provide useful models for resolving present-day debates on climate change necessitate understanding the complexities of climatological data, human reactions to change, and regional variabilities. Since these reflections on past climate change contribute to dialogs established about present climate change, it is important that we get it right.
There is growing anthropological interest in climate change. Archaeology was quick to realize its implications for comprehending the past and has done a lot to illuminate its impacts on human communities. The last few years have also seen a sharp uptick in cultural anthropological attention. Most of this research has focused on the local impacts of climate change and the implications of cultural models for culturally sensitive mitigation and adaptation policy. But as the keystone discipline in the social sciences – holistic in its theoretical efforts to integrate the realms of human thought and action, universalistic in its global and temporal empirical reach – Anthropology is ideally positioned to make a quite different contribution: improving the modeling that underlies projections of climate change and its effects. This talk assesses the most important of these models, identifies their limitations, and surveys three areas of anthropological research that could greatly improve them.
Local ecological knowledge produces positive returns to individuals via the cultural transmission of adaptive behaviors. Since social learning does not exist in a vacuum, locating behavioral transmission patterns in real-world settings informs our theory about salient human contexts such as cultural settings, individual heterogeneity in age and learning ability, and the complex interactions between learning strategies and local ecologies. I examine factors at the population- and individual-levels in a South Indian honey collecting tribe that are contributing to the persistence or loss of local knowledge over time. I will evaluate data from 196 individuals (aged 6 - 65 years) who participated in skills tests and interviews about local ecological knowledge related to collecting wild honey.
For two decades the Lebanese Shi'i group Hizbullah achieved unrivalled salience in Lebanese politics. Although Iran's support cannot be overlooked, this talk explores the local bases for Hizbullah's popularity, including the worldview and narrative that it espouses, and the extent to which its popularity stems from instrumental support (people, mostly Shi'a, lending support in return for services). In addition, the transnational currents that affect Hizbullah are examined, including the influence of rival Shi'i religious institutions and contending models for political change.
Associate Professor, University of Minnesota
Much of our understanding of early ape evolution comes from fossils discovered on Rusinga Island, Kenya. A century of research there has produced tens of thousands of fossils, representing more than one hundred species of mammals, reptiles, invertebrates, and plants, and including copious remains of the early ape Proconsul. Despite this wealth of paleoecological information, almost every aspect of Proconsul's paleobiology is still hotly debated: what were its habitat preferences? how long ago did Proconsul live? how many species were there? how is it related to other primates? This talk will begin answering some of those questions using results from fieldwork carried out on Rusinga over the last six years.
Two partial skeletons of a new species of Australopithecus have been unearthed from a nearly two-million-year-old cave in South Africa. Though these fossils display many anatomies that align these late australopithecines with the genus Homo, the foot anatomy is surprisingly primitive. These fossils suggest that Australopithecus sediba was walking in a biomechanically unique manner, and that were was a locomotor diversity in our australopithecine ancestors.
Ancient Histories, New Identities: (Re)Construction of Afro-Venezuelan Identity in Contemporary Venezuela
My research is based on summer 2011 fieldwork in Venezuela, where I interacted with communities of African descent. Through participant observation, interviews, and casual conversation I became interested in how education, both formal and informal, serves as a means to reinforce and transform aspects of identity specific to Afro-Venezuelans. (Watanabe)
Stefanie P. Lazow
Title: Communicative Complexity in the Gelada Facial Display Repertoire
I explored the unique lip-flip movement of the gelada baboon (Theropithecus gelada), as well as display blending capabilities. I applied FACS, the Facial Action Coding System, to video footage of social interactions between wild geladas (collected previously by Professor Dobson) in order to structurally define facial displays. I also coded associated behaviors in order to describe and compare display motivation. This project has implications for studies of the generation of complexity in animal communication systems. (Dobson)
Cujo in the family: Experiences of owners of 'aggressive' dogs in the contemporary American society
I spent August of 2011 in San Francisco trying to get the feel of the local "dog culture" and find owners of dogs who have issues with aggressive behavior that I could interview. I made contacts with those owners though various trainers, and with some help from my host mother and conducted 45-90 minutes interviews with them, over the phone or in person. I got to meet some of their dogs as well. I also spent time going to dog parks, attending dog training classes and Vicious and Dangerous dog hearings at the City Hall and simply walking around the city looking at how people interacted with dogs and looking at information about dogs available to people at places such as pet stores and book-shops. (Watanabe)
Jennifer L. Koester
Voluntourism: Mediating Interactions with the "Other"
I worked with an NGO in northern India to research "voluntourism," in which people from developed nations travel to developing nations to volunteer. I am examining the interactions and relationships between the voluntourists and the host organization with whom they work to understand what each group expects to and does receive from the relationship. I am also analyzing moments of conflict and misunderstandings and linking them back to mismatched expectations on both sides. (Igoe)
Conceptualizing Prenatal Health Care in Rural Southern Gujarat, India
I spent 10 weeks conducting anthropological field research in the district of Navsari in southern Gujarat, India to explore local pregnant women's experiences with Gram Seva, a regional health care NGO. I focused my work on the ways in which women use and respond to Gram Seva's maternal-child health care efforts to improve preventative and prenatal health.I researched women's perceptions of Gram Seva's services and sought to compare their beliefs to the NGO's overarching maternal health goals. Through participant observation in both the NGO's hospital and surrounding villages, open-ended interviews, and focus groups, I gathered ethnographic details on local women's pregnancy routines and their opinions of biomedical prenatal care. Since returning from my trip, I have been using my results for my ongoing thesis, which focuses on authoritative knowledge and the ways in which local pregnant women navigate between matrifocal and institutional prenatal health care settings. I incorporate my ethnographic encounters to position Gram Seva's prenatal care services within a preexisting kinship sphere, in which mothers and mothers-in-law dictate prenatal care practices. I analyze these two sets of authoritative prenatal care knowledge to address how each shapes pregnant women's observations, perceptions, and eventual outcomes. (Craig, Gutiérrez-Nájera)
Supply, Demand, and Citizenship: Negotiating Effective Social Service at a Danish Program
My research explores the ways that the volunteers and homeless clients of Den Mobile Café, a food delivery program in Copenhagen, Denmark, deal with changes to their environment and routines. It locates these changes inside the structure of the larger welfare system in Denmark, which privileges citizens over non-citizens in access to services. (Alverson, Gutiérrez-Nájera)
Alexandra C. Rahmann
Beauty, Fertility and Anxiety: Societal Roles of the Yemenite Jewish Women as Reflected in the Traditional Bride's Costume and Jewelry
I am currently writing an anthropology thesis on Yemenite Jewish wedding customs and how they reflect the social hierarchy and gender roles amongst the Yemenite Jews. A significant portion of my thesis focuses on the material culture of these weddings, namely the bride's costume and jewelry. While these elements are meant to beautify the bride, they also have more complex and ambiguous connotations related to the anxiety women felt in their day-to-day lives. Yemenite society was characterized by a strict gender separation and hierarchy, which led to personal anxiety as well as jealousy between women. This tension was manifested in a strong belief in the evil eye, the power that one can inflict harm, illness, or even death on another through a glance. A bride was particularly vulnerable to the evil eye, and her jewelry and dress offered protective powers against it, while simultaneously containing symbols of fertility. I received Goodman funding to visit the Jewish Museum in New York City, one of the only American museums that has a collection of Yemenite jewelry, to see pieces of this intricate jewelry firsthand. (Kan)
D'99; Ph. D. (Anthropology, UCLA)
Ford Postdoctoral Fellow at UC Santa Cruz
Joint Colloquium with Native American Studies
From her web page at IPinCh
"Part of my agenda as a Native Alaskan scholar is to put the world of academia at the service of local communities through open, engaged scholarship. As such, I have collaborated with tribal governments, national and international organizations working to promote Indigenous cultural perpetuation, heritage and economic development throughout my professional life. After receiving a B.A. in art history
from Dartmouth College, I returned to Alaska where I worked at the Sealaska Heritage Institute and the Alaska Native Heritage Center as Program Supervisor. Subsequently, I earned a Ph.D. in anthropology from UCLA followed by appointments as a National Science Foundation Postdoctoral fellow at UC Berkeley, and as an Assistant Professor of Anthropology at Humboldt State University. Broadly speaking, my research explores Indigenous entrepreneurship as a lens to explore the shifting politics of Indigeneity in relation to policy and development. I currently hold a Ford postdoctoral fellowship at UC Santa Cruz, where I am working on a project theorizing Indigenous capitalism(s)."
Drawing on ethnographic research conducted in Seoul's Protestant churches and colleges of music, Prof. Harkness focuses specifically on the way European-style classical singing (sǒngak) has emerged as an emblem modern Christian personhood and national advancement. In particular, he explores how sǒngak singing in Korean churches has moved away from the coded emotionality of suffering and hardship that pervaded Korea's 20th century expressive culture, presenting a stark contrast to styles of vocalization normally associated with the past. Among these Christians, it is claimed that an advanced nation is joyful, healthy, stable, and clean—and so should its voice be.
In human and nonhuman primates alike, social behavior varies considerably between individuals, yet the genetic, neural and evolutionary basis of this heterogeneity remains poorly understood. The aim of my research is to determine genetic contributions to variation in social behavior and cognition in rhesus macaques living in a naturalistic setting on Cayo Santiago Island, Puerto Rico. This well-characterized free-ranging population provides a unique model for probing the relationship between social behaviors and genetics. Together with colleagues at Duke University and collaborators at Yale University and the University of Puerto Rico, I initially have focused on two questions. First, is sociality heritable and, if so, is this variation associated with genes previously linked to behavioral phenotypes in humans and captive primates? I use quantitative genetics and detailed pedigree data to estimate the heritability of social network position in 87 adult rhesus macaques from one social group. Next, I explore the association between sociality and length-polymorphisms in the serotonergic pathway. Using four social network measures, individuals' positions within the aggression and affiliation (i.e. grooming and spatial proximity) networks were shown to demonstrate significant additive genetic variation and are thus heritable. This variation may be partly explained by serotonergic polymorphisms. Rhesus macaques with high-functioning serotonergic alleles had significantly higher grooming network scores than individuals with low-functioning alleles. As one of the first large-scale studies to examine behavior-genetic associations in a free-ranging primate, these results support the assumption that sociality has been shaped by selection acting on heritable variation and point to a potentially fundamental role of the serotonin pathway in the evolution of sociality in primates.
My research examines the ways in which women religious (also know as nuns or sisters)negotiate the contradiction of being modern women in a solely feminine community within the distinctly patriarchal Catholic Church and a largely patriarchal world. There is certain irony in the fact that women religious have conditional autonomy within an organization that is led by men and ruled by a patriarchal doctrine – that is, they are relatively independent, internally organized and self-governed, but there are still rules of their order and of the Church that must be followed. As there is dissension in the male-dominated areas of the Catholic Church and the number of women religious declines, I hope to uncover the ways in which nuns – particularly the Sisters of Mercy, the order with which I worked – keep their missions and lives relevant to the places and time in which they work. To come to a better understanding of how women religious in the 21st century deal with this dichotomy, I conducted ethnographic research during July and August of 2010 at the Mercy International Centre in Dublin, Ireland. In the course of my research, I learned a good deal about the ways in which the Sisters of Mercy perceive their lives, social roles and work within the Church and the ways in which they are dealing with changes both religious and secular. My analysis will explore these issues and offer a picture of a community of dichotomies – at once stable and in flux, challenged and challenging. (Advisors: Jim Igoe, Sergei Kan)
Because intraspecific variation is the raw material for evolution, documenting patterns of morphological variation within regional faunas may indicate geographic centers of speciation in the primate fossil record. It has been suggested that during the middle Eocene (late Gardnerbuttean), the basin margin region of South Pass, Wyoming represented a "species pump," a heterogeneous upland environment well-suited for promoting speciation. In order to test this hypothesis, I compared patterns of dental variation within the primates of South Pass with that of the basin-center area of the Bridger Basin. I collected upper and lower second molar measurements for a sample of 7 omomyid species (73 specimens) and 6 adapid species (72 specimens). I used the coefficient of variation to determine whether primates from South Pass have greater intraspecific morphological variation than primates from the Bridger Basin center. My results indicate that there are differences in the levels of intraspecifc morphological variation found at South Pass when compared to the Bridger basin. Several species from South Pass have higher measures of intraspecific variation than those at the Bridger Basin, although levels are still consistent with coefficient of variation values characterizing single-species samples. South Pass has greater levels of variation within adapids and omomyids for most measurements when compared to the Bridger Basin. In addition, measures of intraspecific variation appear to support South Pass as a center of species origination. Further study of morphological variation will elucidate the usefulness of patterns of geographic variation for understanding primate evolution. (Advisor: Kathleen Muldoon)
My research seeks to understand the relationship and interactions between foresters and environmentalists in northern New England on issues relating to forestry practices and sustainable forest management. I am focusing on the meaning and practices of foresters and environmentalists in this region and their accompanying beliefs, expertise, cultural backgrounds, and connections to the land. My fieldwork setting involved the states of Maine, New Hampshire, Vermont, and Massachusetts; ethnographic research methods included open-ended interviews, short surveys, and participant observation. My thesis uses my ethnographic data and related sources to examine the complex identity categories of foresters and environmentalists as well as the culture of the northern New England woods in light of the environmental history of the landscape alongside overarching notions of wilderness and community.(Advisor: Jim Igoe)
My research is focused on a piece of breccia from Anjohibe Cave in northwestern Madagascar. This breccia is composed of rocks and subfossils encased within a calcium carbonate (e.g., limestone) matrix. Subfossils are bone remains that have not fully fossilized, due to either suboptimal burial conditions or the age of the remains. In order to recover and study the bones, the calcium carbonate matrix has to be removed. I have helped to develop a new method for fossil extraction that limits damage to fossil bones. By using a mixture of acetic acid and personal lubricant, I can apply the mixture onto the matrix where it will adhere and thus not contaminate the bones. This new extraction technique helps to preserve the integrity of the bones as they are minimally exposed to the acid. Although this technique was developed on a breccia that contains a microfaunal sample from Madagascar, it is applicable in many paleontological settings because it is common for fossils to be found within a calcium carbonate based matrix. This new method of preparation increases the probability that the fossils found encased in breccias, such as subfossil lemurs or South African hominins, can be removed intact for further study. The application of this method has allowed me to efficiently remove a diverse micromammalian faunal sample from the Anjohibe Cave breccia. When completed, this faunal sample will help provide insight about the paleoenvironmental conditions surrounding the Anjohibe Cave area. (Advisor: Kathleen Muldoon)
Though the concept and use of "microfinance" has become touted in the past several years as a powerful tool for economic development, little data exists in the broader microfinance literature or the anthropological literature that examines the ways the economic activity surrounding microfinance is embedded into social structures in China. This project uses the lens of anthropology to complicate emerging and powerful international, national and regional narratives about microfinance, economic development, and China. Fieldwork was conducted from late-January to mid-March 2010 and September of 2010 in different areas of Guizhou Province, China, mainly with management personnel, loan officers, and borrowers of a government-owned, national bank that practices microfinance in southwest China, though many of the experiences I had with individuals I encountered through personal networks outside of the bank greatly influenced this work. This thesis traces how ideas of *guanxi* and *renqing* (connections/social capital and social debt respectively) formed a system of reciprocity and exchange that affects how my informants made specific economic decisions, how economic disparities and forms of structural inequality are created and perpetuated, and how the power that is created and actuated within the organizational structure of the bank influences the microfinance program itself. (Advisor: Sienna Craig)
Despite extensive anthropological and linguistic research on Native American communities, "Native-accented English" remains surprisingly understudied. This paper helps fill this gap by investigating the Native American community at Dartmouth College. We conducted this study as participant-observers through our own Native heritage. We provide new descriptions of this dialect and specific experimental results showing its use in social context. Our project helps explore and identify 'Native-accented English' dialect features, building on Leap (1993).
Dartmouth draws Native students from all over the continent, creating an unusually diverse Native community where patterns of variation can be observed as Native students interact with each other and with the "Other" (Fought 2006), i.e., non-Native Americans.
Experiment: We gathered data both from daily observations and 30 recorded interviews. Respondents watched and answered questions about two contrasting video clips:
Mainstream news sourceSmoke Signals (Native American film)
Questions were then asked probing thoughts on language and identity.
Our analysis shows that "Native-accented English" is characterized by fewer coordinated sentence structures, increase in negative concord, stopped velar nasals of –iŋ, and distinctive F0 patterns: Acoustic analysis in Praat determined the presence of high-rising terminals and pitch accent.
For 11 interviewees, Native features were observed after Smoke Signals but only Standard English features were used after the mainstream news clip. Regardless of the video clip 9 interviewees exhibited Native features and 10 maintained Standard English features. We describe these patterns of variation in the context of each individual's construction of identity.
"Borderlands" are key places to examine construction of ethnicity through language (Fought 2008). Native students at Dartmouth must negotiate ethnic identity under daily exposure to an Other. It is along such borders that ethnicity is constructed, and our study shows the particular linguistic features that are indexing Native identity. (Jim Stamford, Christopher Ball)
I will use my research-project to explore the health-care decision-making process for rural, impoverished, agricultural households in the Central Mountains of the Dominican Republic. Specifically, I would examine the physical, social, and economic roles performed by 'appropriate' healthcare methodology as desired by the marginalized households. In an environment of medical pluralism, demographic-specific disease etiology is informed by the therapy-compromises between, household preferences for, and relative access to the various healthcare facilities. Beyond the distribution of medical products, these facilities articulate lay, folk, or official biomedical models of disease-action, respectively, and help shape local knowledge and medical product consumption. My research will utilize the following ethnographic methods: participant observation of local medical facilities (lay, folk, and professional), informal and formal interviews with with demographic-specific households on their medical etiology, and free-listing associations with the community participants to gauge conditions treated at specific facilities instead of the home. The data collected enables me to outline local cosmologies of illness, and disagreements over health-care ideology between lay-and-folk models of disease-action in contrast to professional practitioners. I believe that the co-habitation of marginalized, patient-households and high-tech medical care fosters methodological syncretism and use of multiple facilities to treat the various socio-therapeutic aspects of the sickness-role. (Advisor: Sergei Kan)
This senior thesis explores structural barriers to pediatric adherence to antiretroviral therapy. How do social forces and processes come to be embodied as biological outcomes among HIV-positive patients, especially children, in resource-limited settings? My ethnographic research project sought to contribute to the developing efforts to answer this question. My inquiries were premised upon critical medical anthropologist Paul Farmer's hypothesis that "throughout the world, those least likely to comply are those least able to comply" (Farmer 1999); the field research was guided by the following objectives:
To ethnographically explore child and caretaker perspectives on the meaning and construction of pediatric antiretroviral adherence;To elicit first-person perspectives on barriers to adherence;To understand differences between adherence for children and adults;To identify strategies employed by children and caretakers to meet the challenges of managing daily treatment for a chronic illness in a resource-limited setting;To document the importance of serostatus disclosure to pediatric patients for promoting adherence; andTo investigate the connection between caretaker relationship to child and adherence.
This thesis will advance the argument that pediatric antiretroviral adherence, as a case in extreme complexity inextricably linked to many other global health outcomes, provides an actionable entry point into scaling up access to and improving delivery of care for the most vulnerable population groups in high burden regions. It will also assert that the failure of the global medical community to address key barriers to pediatric adherence would pose a harsh rebuke to the hegemonic belief that a rising tide lifts all boats without sinking others. (Advisor: Elizabeth Carpenter-Song)
Many refugees have had experiences that predispose them to physical and mental disability, including torture, sexual violence, and forced migration. A number of interventions have been developed to ameliorate the effects of such experiences, yet these services are often inaccessible and/or poorly utilized due to a confluence of cultural, linguistic, and financial barriers. Accordingly, the proposed study explores alternative approaches to healing and adjustment, especially those that involve refugees as active participants in their conceptualization, development, and implementation. Specifically, this study is focused on the case of Bhutanese refugees in the US, an ethnically and linguistically Nepali group called the "Lhotshampa" that lived in exile for nearly two decades (mostly in refugee camps in Nepal) before being subject to a set of resettlement campaigns and projects in North America (US and Canada). A combination of participant observation, focus groups, and semi-structured interviews was used to identify community-based programs that promote mental health within the cultural framework of the Bhutanese. I also explored the relationship between language and mental health concepts and the influence of positioning within the family on the experienced suffering of individuals. (Advisor: Sienna Craig)
Last summer and fall, I travelled to San Diego, CA and Norfolk, VA to conduct interviews with lesbian, gay, and bisexual American servicemembers. Originally, I had aimed to determine if there was an actual subculture of LGB servicemembers in the military, but my research led me to discover much more than I orginally had anticipated. While conducting my interviews --- both in person with natives of CA and VA, and over the phone with natives from other parts of the country --- I began to realize that there wasn't a distinctly recognizable subculture of LGB servicemembers, per se. (Although if such a subculture did exist, it would be defined by one unifying factor: secrecy.) Instead, it turned out that there was a rich, multifaceted web of intersecting phenomena which directly affected LGB servicemembers --- phenomena such as socioeconomic constraints, regional politics, and American notions of masculinity. This presentation will synthesize my findings in order to convey how such factors influence LGB servicemembers across the country. (Advisor: Kirk Endicott)
This thesis is both a study of the ancient Egyptian and Aztec conceptions of personhood and an experiment in thinking about the different conceptualizations of personhood comparatively. The first part of this project considers how each society's cultural ideas and beliefs shaped the conception of personhood, thereby providing us a better sense of how these ideas and beliefs are integrated with a person's sense of his or her existence and experiences. This examination attempts to rethink current and past scholarly studies of personhood in early civilizations. The second part of the project explores the values and limits of using the comparative approach in studying early civilizations by reflecting upon the similarities and differences that are observable cross-culturally. (Advisors: Susan Ackerman, Deborah Nichols)
In Nigeria, local AIDS organizations are widely seen as conduits for corruption, serving elite interests more than the people suffering from HIV and AIDS. But despite widespread cynicism about AIDS NGOs in general, local perceptions of particular NGOs and their leaders turn on assessments of conduct that complicate straightforward understandings of corruption. Drawing on two ethnographic case studies, this paper explores the intersecting dynamics of inequality, morality, and patronage as they play out in Nigerian NGOs that straddle local and global forces in the era of AIDS.
Sponsored by the Robert A. 1925 and Catherine L. McKennan Fund for Anthropology, the African and African American Studies, the Women and Gender Studies Program, and the Dartmouth Coalition for Global Health.
May 12, 2011Including a Conversation with the Film's Producer Professor Jill Lewis, Hampshire College, Gender Studies
Pushing toward the wedding canopy: some starts, hesitations, and partial assents in the “shiddukh” (matchmaking) between anthropology and Jewish studies
April 28, 2011
Both Anthropology and Jewish studies crystallized as disciplines in the course of the 19th century. There were several direct links between the streams such as in the work of William Robertson Smith and his student James Frazer (Folklore in the Old Testament), but for the most part the disciplines did not touch upon one another. Close attention to the some of the environments within which the disciplines worked (e.g. surrounding Fran Boas) reveal ignored opportunities for contact and mutual interest, highlighting the question of why this did not happen. Obvious answers such as the image of anthropology as focused on "primitive" societies, and the privileging of "high" textual materials in Jewish Studies are part of the answer, but there are other issues such as different perceptions and emphases regarding language (Hebrew and other Jewish languages) in its spoken and written expressions. Gradually, and hesitatingly, some of these barriers have been broken reflecting changes both within anthropology and some fields of Jewish studies.
March 4-5, 2011
Sponsored by the Department of Anthropology, Hood Museum of Art, Asian and Middle Eastern Studies Program, Native American Studies Program, Associate Dean of the Faculty for Social Sciences, Associate Dean of the Faculty for International and Interdisciplinary Programs, Department of Arts History, and Dickey Center for International Understanding.
This small conference will bring together scholars, students, and members of the public to learn about contemporary Australian Aboriginal art, with a special focus on the important collection of Aboriginal paintings recently given to the Hood Museum of Art by collectors Will Owen and Harvey Wagner. It will feature a tour of the collection for visiting and local scholars, a public lecture by a distinguished specialist on Aboriginal art, a presentation by the donors, and a panel discussion.March 4, 2011
Saturday, March 5, 2011
10:00 a.m. Presentation by Will Owen and Harvey Wagner. Rockefeller 3.
11:00 a.m. Panel discussion including Will Owen, Harvey Wagner, Francoise Dussart, Robert Welsch (Franklin Pierce University), Stephen Gilchrist (National Gallery of Victoria), Jennifer Deger (University of New South Wales), and Brian Kennedy (Toledo Museum of Art). Rockefeller 3.
David Germano is a leading figure in Tibetan Studies and Buddhist Studies, specializing on the Great Perfection (Dzogchen) tradition. He is an Associate Professor in the Department of Religion at UVA, the co-director of UVA's Tibet Center, and the present director of SHANTI, UVA's Social Sciences, Humanities, and the Arts Network of Technological Initiatives. Germano is a true innovator, both in and out of the classroom. Since 2000, Germano has also been the director and driving force behind the Tibetan and Himalayan Digital Library (www.thlib.org). This international project involves multiple major collaborations involving technology in GIS research, language instructional materials, dictionaries, literary archives, ethnographic research and historical work. This is the largest international initiative in Tibetan Studies involving digital technology, multiple disciplines, and multiple institutions. It is also leading efforts at integrating academic work with community services initiatives (specifically in fields of education, health, and social history) in Tibet and the greater Himalayan region. Germano is the primary person responsible for the Library's structural design, social networks, and intellectual program, as well as being active in one way or another in almost every major project therein.
Digital technology in the form of computers and the Internet has a relatively short history as a ubiquitous phenomena (mid 1980s and mid 1990s respectively), and yet has already had a transformative impact on many quarters of our society. Higher education, with its typical conservatism, has been relatively slow to explore such transformative possibilities, with broad scale change still quite limited in the Academy. What would higher education look like if it were radically embrace digital technology in a manner that we see in, for example, the commercial sector? This talk will present a vision of a possible academic future in this light, in reliance upon work done at the University of Virginia with the field of Tibetan Studies and digital technology. Topics covered will include cultural geography in disciplines other than geography, community-driven ontologies, engaged scholarship, and participatory knowledge, as well as using videos resources analytically, lexicography, and other issues, all with a focus on possible pathways towards changing our basic practices in research, teaching, publication, and engagement through leveraging the power of digital technology.
In recent years many scholars have asserted that nomadism in Iran emerged around 8000 BC, more or less as early as sheep and goat were domesticated. From this premise a whole series of claims have been made for the role of nomads in Iranian prehistory. In this lecture a contrary view will be argued, namely that Iran was a land of sedentary village and town dwellers for most of its prehistoric and early historic past, and that nomadism did not play a significant role until a relatively late date when changes began to occur which utterly transformed the demography and land-use of the region.
Charlie Nunn's research addresses a wide variety of fundamental questions in evolutionary anthropology using phylogenetic comparative methods,theoretical modeling, and field research. His recent work has focused on three main areas: disease ecology in primates, the evolution of mammalian sleep, and cultural evolution in humans. His forthcoming book is entitled "The Comparative Method in Evolutionary Anthropology and Biology" (University of Chicago Press).
Natasha Zaretsky, Ph.D., is a post-doctoral lecturer in the Princeton Writing Program and affiliated faculty with the Department of Anthropology at Princeton University. She received her Ph.D. from Princeton University and her A.B. from Dartmouth College.
She is a cultural anthropologist who studies political violence, social change, citizenship, and transnationalism. Her work examines the significance of memorial practices to social movements that developed in the wake of violence in Argentina, and specifically how Jewish Argentines engage memories of violence in redefining their relationship with their state and one another. Her current research focuses on the emerging Argentine diaspora, investigating transformations to Argentine citizenship and sovereignty in response to political and economic uncertainty.
Children are often at the nexus of vulnerability when a population undergoes social, medical and economic changes. This thesis explores the ways that psycho-social and cultural factors inform and influence a child’s perceptions of health and health “risk” as well as their sense of agency in relation to addressing health issues. The ethnographic research that forms the basis of this thesis was conducted from January to March 2009 and from August to September, in Dar es Salaam, Tanzania. Based on these five months of field research, this study explores childhood identity, rationalization of misfortune, and individual agency, through the theoretical frameworks of medical pluralism and praxes of health seeking behavior. Preliminary findings suggest that: (1) Children’s biomedical health knowledge does not consistently necessitate communication or action, nor does it preclude supernatural explanations of illness, (2) Children cope with misfortune and uncertainty through cultural constructions of risk, and (3) Children’s expressions of agency are often a direct reflection of their perceived trust in caregivers. (Advisors: Sienna Craig, President Jim Yong Kim)
Contemporary Inupiaq society views reciprocity as an important cultural value. With the data collected through ethnographic participation and through a Maussian perspective on the gift I analyze how names and naming, storytelling, and subsistence all create social relations through reciprocity. Though these things may seem quite different, Inupiaq people consistently discuss all of these practices in terms of cycles, circles, and wholeness. Within the Inupiaq society discussion of cycles, circles, and wholeness is a local description of the basic conception of reciprocity in exchange relationships. I discuss cyclicity as an organizing principle of Inupiaq culture and the interconnectedness of names and naming, storytelling, and subsistence and how they each entail the notion of reciprocity to create social relations. My hypothesis is that names and naming, storytelling, and subsistence help to create Inupiaq reciprocity and cyclicity. (Advisor: Christopher Ball)
My ethnographic research explored the relationship between traditional healers and parents/caretakers in rural Tanzania. Specifically, I investigated how traditional healers shape parents’/caretakers’ understanding of common children’s illnesses, children’s medicines, and appropriate medicine administration practices. The findings informed data obtained from a joint Dartmouth-World Health Organization study focusing on preferences for children’s medicines and administration practices in low-resource areas. The following methods were used in the research:
(Advisors: Sienna Craig, Hoyt Alverson)
Despite New Orleans' marketed image as a racially harmonious “gumbo” of ethnic and cultural diversity, substantial racial and class inequalities continue to plague the city. In the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina, many of these issues rose to the surface as part of a national debate concerning the government's response to the disaster. This study was initiated four years after Katrina with the goal of determining how and if the media coverage of and public debates about the hurricane had affected the interactions and experiences of Tulane University students in the Crescent City. The students at this university, while educated in post-Civil Rights America and of diverse regional backgrounds, are predominantly white and comparatively privileged. It was found that, despite the diversity of their political beliefs, Tulane students are engaged in the continuous construction and reinforcement of social, symbolic, and spatial boundaries between themselves and local residents of New Orleans (in particular, African American residents). Such boundaries, by limiting Tulane students' interactions and experiences within the city and by conceptually distancing them from the local “other,” severely limit the visibility of and student reactions (both material and abstract) to racial and class inequality. Specifically, these boundaries inhibit Tulane students from becoming actively involved in combating such issues. This study helps explain how racial and class inequality can, simultaneously, be considered intolerable and yet perpetuated within and by our society. (Advisors: Lourdes Gutiérrez Nájera, Jim Igoe)
Archaeologists routinely assess the nature and time frame of sites from surface material. The proposed research seeks to examine the representativeness of surface and near surface material compared to subsurface deposits in order to determine the full occupational sequence and the kinds of activities undertaken at El Antigual, Roatán Island, Honduras (Figure 1). Preliminary surface survey suggests that the site dates to the Late Postclassic (AD 1200- AD 1519); this will be tested by comparing the results of surface material against subsurface deposits at the site. The research will aid future efforts of conservation and preservation as well as help to ascertain which areas to further excavate. Roatán is a Bay Island off the coast of Honduras in the northwest corner of the Caribbean. The island was first visited by Europeans in 1502 by Christopher Columbus and much of what we know of the prehispanic indigenous people comes from the accounts of the Spaniards. Their accounts, which have been supplemented by a limited amount of archaeological work, describe a people with a mixed subsistence economy of hunter/fisher-gatherer and small-scale farming. Despite these accounts the cultural history of the indigenous peoples remains largely unknown. (Advisor: Deborah Nichols)
This project seeks to identify the nature of interactions between adult males and infant ringtailed lemurs (Lemur catta) when observed in captivity. This study was conducted over an eight-week period during the summer of 2009 at the Duke Lemur Center in Durham, NC. The focal group was comprised of eight individuals including three adult males and two infants. By comparing captive interactions with studies drawn from the wild, I hope to gain insight into the factors determining primate behavior and understand if the causes are genetic or environmental. This project will seek to place Lemur catta interactions within an established spectrum of primate behavior, and then delve into the theoretical ramifications of this behavior using the parental investment theory and the established body of knowledge relating to male-infant interactions in non-human primates. (Advisor: Seth Dobson)
When asked the question ‘Can women violently participate in jihad (holy war)?’ the Muslim community transition from the initial answer of ‘No,’ to today’s answer of ‘Yes.’ The answer of ‘Yes’ was qualified to allow women’s violent jihad only as suicide bombings (as opposed to other types of attacks or participation in the jihadist organizations themselves). Female suicide attacks (FSAs) represent the most extreme and yet the only military (non-domestic, violent) actions in which Iraqi women are allowed to participate. I will trace a Foucauldian historical genealogy to explore the factors that have produced a landscape in which FSAs occur fundamentally shaped by the interactions between jihadist organizations, (especially al Qaeda in Iraq), foreign occupier nations, (the most important in Iraq being the U.S.), and gender hegemonies (such as the public/private divide) which confer disciplining power to, and reify, male dominance. (Advisor: John Watanabe)
Recent anatomical research suggests a pattern of uniformity in the muscles of facial expression across several primate species. This pattern appears to conflict with the observed diversity in facial mobility (the number of facial movements an individual can produce) among primate species. Exploring the potential disparity between uniformity of facial expression musculature and diversity of facial movements requires further expansion of the existing anatomical data on primate facial muscles. In my thesis, I will discuss the results of a study in which I examined the facial musculature of 2 species of diurnal anthropoid primates: macaques (high facial mobility) and marmosets (low facial mobility). Using the ‘facial mask’ dissection technique, I determined the number (presence or absence) and degree of differentiation of the facial muscles in each species. I identified at least 18 highly differentiated muscles in macaques as compared to 6 muscles with less differentiation in marmosets. My results indicate some degree of correspondence between facial expression musculature and facial mobility, and as such have implications for the role of these two variables in the evolution of primate social communication. (Advisor: Kathleen Muldoon)
Co-sponsored by the International Student Association, The Asian and Middle Eastern Studies Program, and the Dickey Center
Hurricane Katrina became the worst natural disaster in the history of the United States when it came ashore over southern Mississippi on August 29, 2005. After three years, the disaster experience continues in the city of Biloxi, Mississippi. While some residents have returned to their homes, many others continue to suffer directly from the hurricane due to inadequate housing, social and psychological displacement, and the inefficiencies of the recovery. This thesis compares the Biloxi experience in Katrina to existing cases in anthropological disaster literature, and situates the Katrina disaster in its sociohistorical context. Based on my independent field and academic research, I argue that preconceived local cultural approaches to hurricanes, an unexpectedly burdensome toll on the individual and collective state of emotions and social relationships, and systematic inefficiencies and miscommunications in the recovery process exacerbated the impact of Hurricane Katrina and the progress of the ongoing recovery process in Biloxi. Advisor: James J. Igoe
The research investigated the development of exchange systems in the Basin of Mexico during the Early and Middle Formative Periods (1800-500 B.C.). The degree and nature of exchange was quantified by sourcing decorated pottery previously collected from the Teotihuacán Valley in the northeastern Basin of Mexico. The ceramics were sourced by three physical methods: instrumental neutron activation analysis (INAA), laser ablation inductively coupled plasma mass spectrometry (LA-ICP-MS) and thin section petrography. The first two methods provided bulk elemental composition that was compared to that of regional clay samples. Significantly similar compositions of pottery clay and raw clay were the basis for source assignments. Thin section petrography served as a complimentary provenance method because it characterized ceramics and clays by their mineral content. The study intended to comparatively evaluate INAA, LA-ICP-MS, and petrography as sourcing methods, as well as reveal insights about early exchange networks in the Basin of Mexico. Advisors: Brian Jackson and Deborah L. Nichols.
The Japanese describe themselves as a people without religion, yet every year, every city or town will hold any number of festivals that focus on the kami, god-like spirits of the Shinto religion who are intrinsically tied to the land, making space an important aspect of Shinto. This thesis will analyze at both sacred and secular space as used in the Lantern Festival of Nihonmatsu, Japan to explore the relationship between the Japanese people, space, and Shinto. The Lantern Festival gives a unique insight into the Japanese peoples' conceptualization of space, both sacred and secular. The project consists of fieldwork done in two separate visits to Nihonmatsu through the Goodman Fund. Advisors: John M. Watanabe and Christopher Ball.
The proposed research is an anthropological exploration of the construction of scientific knowledge. Constructing scientific knowledge into observations, results, and conclusions has been the subject of much research in the sociology of knowledge and the history of science. Historian of science Thomas Kuhn, French social philosopher Pierre Bourdieu, communications theorist Marshall McLuhan, and medical anthropologist Amade M'Charek have each offered insights into the construction of scientific knowledge, albeit from different perspectives. The proposed research explores how the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and Emory University approach concepts of etiology, pathology, and disease using standard methodologies and analytical tools to construct answers about morbidity, mortality, and the incidence of disease. The project will examine what Pickering (1992) and Hacking (1992, 1999) suggest as the self-vindicating nature of scientific research and scientific knowledge. I will extrapolate from their basic argument and apply it to the paradigms and praxis of health care in research settings by studying the construction of scientific knowledge at the CDC and Emory University in Atlanta, GA. Furthermore, this project seeks to understand how the paradigms with which scientists of these two institutions work and the practices they use in their research construct viable results from their data sets. Advisor: Hoyt Alverson.
This thesis explores how contemporary Fijian men construct and understand masculinity as a result of their dual colonial and Polynesian cultural heritage and contemporary, globally-connected society. Currently, Fiji's tourism industry and the availability of television, movies, and the internet have provided for Fijian's continuous consumption of global culture. Based on nearly three months of fieldwork, conducted from March through May 2007, this thesis will provide insight into how individuals craft their identities within complex cultural landscapes formed from local and global histories. My research illustrates and examines examples of syncretic identities born of the complex and often conflicting messages Fijians face in their daily lives. Specifically, I examine the cultural practices surrounding rugby, male gender, and global media. I have identified definite shifts in popular exercise practices and the use of oppositional identities in defining and grading individuals' social position. Advisor: Sergei Kan
The proposed thesis examines the discovery of a possible Neolithic court tomb and seven similar platform structures on a mountainside in County Mayo, Ireland. Specifically it seeks to understand the relationship of these structures to farming and Neolithic social structure. Neolithic court tombs are found in many parts of Ireland. In some instances they are associated with farming families and field boundaries. This association has led some archaeologists to propose that stone monuments, such as court tombs, gave definition and symbolic power to the surrounding land. By having ownership over the monument and thus land, individual people began controlling the means of food production in the newly established agriculture and economy of the Neolithic period. Once some people held more power than others, chiefdoms started to develop. The thesis will determine how the newly discovered structures fit into this theory of chiefdom development. Advisor: Deborah Nichols
My research with the Cabécar of the Bajo Chirripó Reserve in Costa Rica focuses on a recently formed women's artisanal cooperative. The cooperative has 15 members, all of whom are indigenous women, and it represents an important influx of cash into the community. I want to understand more thoroughly the impact this cooperative and the income it generates has on the women, their families, and social relations within the community more generally. As a comparison, I interviewed Cabécar men who work on a local banana plantation and are the other main source of cash income coming into the various small communities in Bajo Chirripó. I investigated what the moral, ethical and gendered implications of cash is in the Reserve and how and why attitudes towards money may be changing. Advisor: John M. Watanabe.
The lecture examines the historical basis of the conflict between the Dalai Lama and Beijing, the recent manifestations of the conflict over the past three decades, and an assessment of the likelihood of a solution.
- The Dickey Center and the Rubin Foundation
April 28, 2009
Dr. Goldstein is the John Reynolds Harkness Professor of Anthropology and Co-Director of the Center for Research on Tibet at Case Western Reserve University. He has conducted extensive fieldwork in Tibet (Tibet Autonomous Region of China) on a range of topics including nomadic pastoralism, modern Tibetan history, monasticism, and rural socio-economic change. Dr. Goldstein's current projects include: a large Tibetan Oral History WebArchive that will be permanently housed and maintained by the Library of Congress, Volume Three of his History of Modern Tibet series, and a longitudinal study of change in rural Tibet. He is the author of A History of Modern Tibet, Volume One, (1913-51, the Demise of the Lamaist State) and Volume Two, (1951-1955, The Calm Before the Storm), The Snow Lion and the Dragon: China, Tibet and the Dalai Lama and a number of other books and articles including On the Cultural Revolution in Tibet: The Nyemo Incident of 1969, A Tibetan Revolutionary: The Political Life of Bapa Phüntso Wangye and The New Tibetan-English Dictionary of Modern Tibetan.
This presentation describes the findings from an ethnographic study on the relationship between a Native American community and biomedical/genetics research. Related political, cultural, economic, and ethical issues will be discussed.
Puneet is an MD/PhD candidate in cultural anthropology at Washington University in St. Louis, and she will be graduating from the Ph.D. program in May 2009. She recently defended her dissertation, which is about the relationship between a Native American community and medical/genetics research, including ethical, political, and cultural issues. For her dissertation, Puneet spent 2 years working with a Native American community in the Southwest, and helped develop tribal policies on research regulation in addition to conducting in-depth interviews with community members on their views of medical/genetics research. This work was funded by grants from the National Science Foundation and the Wenner-Gren Foundation. She recently presented her dissertation work to the Native American Interest Group at the Mayo Clinic. Puneet has also worked with the National Congress of American Indians Policy Research Center (NCAI PRC) to write papers on research regulation in Native American communities and will be a Post-doctoral Fellow at the NCAI PRC starting in June 2009. She graduated summa cum laude with a bachelor's degree from Northwestern University in 2002, with majors in American Studies and the Honors Program in Medical Education.
Rwandan Rebels and U.S. Federal Prosecutors: Studying American Power in the Age of the War on Terror
His publications include:
He is currently finishing a book entitled "Singing the Right Way: Transition, Secular Enchantment, and Orthodox Christianity in Estonia"
Wednesday, February 11, 2009
New Ideas about the Teotihuacan Collapse
Friday, January 9, 2009
Amazonian ethnology suggests that a symbolic economy of alterity organizes regional social systems. I approach the place of alterity in discourse and ritual among the Wauja in the multilingual Upper Xingu of Central Brazil. I argue that Amazonian discourse is characterized by an alter-centric linguistic ideology. I contrast this with the ego-centric linguistic ideology of Euro-American discourse that is increasingly influential in Amazonian Indians’ production of ascriptive identities. While we take identity as unmarked, both in social life and in social scientific scholarship, Amazonians take alterity as unmarked. Recognizing this point allows for a better description of Amazonian interactional pragmatics. Furthermore, it allows for a more profound understanding of what is involved in indigenous adoption of identity politics. Lastly, it reminds us as linguistic anthropologists that comparative study of language as emergent in interaction provides a privileged lens on matters of basic import to social theory.
Friday, November 7, 2008
Dr. Beall is a physical anthropologist whose research focuses on human adaptation to high-altitude hypoxia, particularly the different patterns of adaptation exhibited by Andean, Tibetan and East African highlanders. Her current research deals with the genetics of adaptive traits and evidence for natural selection, with the role of nitric oxide in oxygen delivery at high altitude and with the human ecology of high-altitude Tibetan nomads. Dr. Beall is a member of the U.S. National Academy of Sciences and the American Philosophical Society.
Wednesday, October 22, 2008
Igiugig is a modern Alaskan village with a unique settlement history—a history which has never been documented. I propose to study and document the Igyaragmiut connection to place, the Lake Iliamna watershed, and how their relationship to this region may have changed through time. Oral histories will be used to create life histories of Igiugig’s five or six elders. I will provide a detailed historical and cultural context to situate these life histories by using anthropological studies of the Yupiit and all available historical documents relating to the establishment of Igiugig Village. My research will be founded upon three principles: in situ interviews, reciprocity, and respect which will minimize risks for participants involved. This research project will be valuable to the community of Igiugig, the oral history collection for Alaska Natives, and the field of anthropology. Advisors: Kirk Endicott, Darren Ranco.
My thesis is an exploration of the conflicting ideologies surrounding land conservation and property in the American West, particularly Colorado. Specifically, I focus on ranchers' and environmentalists' perception and utilization of conservation easements as a way of protecting agriculture, ranching culture, and the environment. In order to protect all three, easement policies must reflect the varying factors by which they are threatened and define their goals in pursuing conservation. My thesis examines how these three goals and the ideologies that support them are revealed and compete in the policy making process as Colorado struggles to adapt to a new, non-agricultural economy. Advisor: Darren Ranco.
The proposed honors thesis will explore the motivations of collectors of classical antiquities. The proposed project is concerned with the collecting habits of classical antiquities collectors vis-a-vis other types of collectors and vis-a-vis one another. The dynamic networks between collectors and “outsiders” that share an interest in classical antiquities help form a “culture of collecting.” Through participant observation the proposed honors thesis will evaluate how this “cosmology of culture” materializes. Advisors: Deborah Nichols, Robert Welsch.
This study addresses the questions of how Kenyan urban youths view HIV and AIDS and how these views influence their behavior. My fieldwork for this study consisted of a ten week internship performing testing and counseling for HIV and AIDS in Nairobi, Kenya and working with a research team on a study about HIV positive youths in the fall of 2006, as well as participant observation and in-depth interviews of youths in and around Nairobi in the summer of 2007. In addition to fieldwork, this study draws from East African ethnography, medical anthropology, and documents pertaining to the policies, programs and services addressing youth and HIV in East Africa. Advisor: Kirk Endicott.
Morphometric analyses in biological anthropology are concerned with establishing the pattern and degree of human variation with respect to morphological traits. Despite its importance in paleoanthropology, no range of variation has been established for the human chin. The purpose of this study is to develop a quantitative approach for evaluating human chin morphology. I will use elliptical Fourier functions to quantify chin shape in a sample of recent human skeletons representing all of the main geographic regions. This study will be the first to establish a range of variation for the modern human chin. These data will represent a baseline for comparing fossil hominins to determine whether individual specimens fall within the range of modern human variation. The results of such comparisons have important implications for ongoing modern human origins debates. Advisors: Seth Dobson, Kathleen Muldoon.
The proposed thesis will examine the interconnection between local and global forces in Heena, a small rural community in Himachal Pradesh, India, as viewed through agriculture and food production. Based on five months of field research, this thesis will examine what agriculture and food production specifically local ideas surrounding food quality, safety, and sustenance, and what they reveal about the social construction of gender and identity in Heena and the effects of the larger development discourse, agricultural policy, and markets on local agriculture. This thesis attempts to provide a better understanding of how global, national, and regional forces impact a local community, as well as how local practices shape, respond to, or even reinterpret these 'outside' influences. Data was collected primarily through participation and informal and formal interviews. The local food economy was also assessed by market surveys, visiting local commercial farmers, and following crops, specifically capsicum, through the entire marketing chain. Advisor: Sienna Craig
My thesis will he an examination of the oral health in the south-central area of Portugal during the period of the transition to agriculture. This region of the world has had very little archaeological attention in general, and is especially lacking information in the areas of osteology and dental anthropology. The transition to agriculture had major effects on health throughout the world, and the particular ways in which it affected populations varied depending on the region in which the change took place. I have chosen three main oral health indicators by which to evaluate oral health among these populations: caries, enamel hypoplasia, and wear. The purpose of this study is:
Advisors: Seth Dobson, Deborah Nichols.
This research examines the lives of Mexican migrant dairy workers in Addison County, Vermont. The migration of mostly unauthorized Mexicans to work in the Vermont dairy industry is a phenomenon that is relatively new, emerging only in the last ten years. Migrants work long, hard hours for little pay and have few opportunities to leave the dairies. When they do go out to shop, visit a doctor, or socialize with friends, they risk arrest and deportation. In this thesis I explore the following questions: How is the historical role of Mexicans as disposable and exploitable "braceros" in the United States realized in the context of 21st century rural Vermont? What are the root causes of migrants' bracero status? And how do migrants' cope with their marginalization? Advisors: Lourdes Gutiérrez Nájera, John Watanabe.
Professor Ball will discuss interethnic negotiation over the construction of a hydroelectric dam near the Xingu Indigenous Park in Brazil. He will highlight how different speech genres are used to different ends by indigenous and national Brazilian participants,and he wiIl analyze the connections between these cultural ways of speaking and cultural models of space and territory.
This thesis explores cultural responses to modernization and globalization on Nukunonu, Tokelau. Nukunonu is the middle of the three coral atolls of Tokelau, a territory of New Zealand located roughly 250 miles north of Samoa in western Polynesia. Tokelau has undergone rapid changes in recent decades, acquiring new technologies and ideas as well as establishing new connections with the outside world. Many anthropologists studying cultural change and modernization have described both processes as negative ones. They see globalization as bulldozing indigenous culture, leading to cultural loss and homogenization, increasing poverty, creating problems of alcoholism, and harming the environment. Tokelau provides an important counter-example to these studies. Its culture has changed but has not been lost. This thesis will challenge other negative examinations of globalization and modernization by exploring Tokelau's unique circumstances. (Sponsored by the the Claire Garber Goodman Fund).
Quartzite was chosen by prehistoric people throughout the world for stone tools due to its workability and durability, as well as its presence in almost all regions inhabited by humans. Despite this fact, there has been relatively little study devoted to quartzite lithic materials. The 5GN.1EQ site of the Upper Gunnison Basin is a quartzite quarry that shows evidence of extensive human modification. Scattered atop bedrock of fairly homogenous, fine grained off-white to grey quartzite is colored material. Much of the colored, non-grey, stone appears to be a product of human modification. Numerous flakes, as well as worked cobbles, of various colors are present atop the plateau. To test whether the scattered stone originated in the bedrock or was manuported from another location, Laser Ablation Inductively Coupled Plasma Mass Spectrometry (LA-ICP-MS) was conducted on in situ and modified samples. LA-ICP-MS confirmed that the scatter and bedrock are quite similar in concentrations of the Rare Earth Elements (REE). To test the possibility of prehistoric annealing, heating trials were conducted with the intent of inducing color change in in-situ samples that would mimic the colors found atop the bedrock. Finally, Raman Spectroscopy was conducted on scatter colored samples, as well as in-situ samples (those that were unheated and others that were heated in the lab at various temperatures and durations of time). Even though a color change did not occur in in-situ samples at temperatures achievable in aboriginal fires, perhaps a chemical or textural change occurred that is detectable with Raman Spectroscopy. If so, Raman Spectroscopy could have valuable applications in heat treatment studies. (Sponsored by the Claire Garber Goodman Fund).
In my thesis, I explore the experiences of women living with HIV in rural New England. Through their narratives, I discuss how their diagnosis of being HIV positive affects their lives and influences how they construct their identities in different situations. In particular, I examine construction of identity in the contexts of social relationships, larger communities, medical interactions, and in their roles as mothers and partners. In doing so, I explore issues of actual and feared rejection, acceptance and support, and the multiple layers of stigma that the women encounter. This allows me to trace their self-described identities and compare them with the identities forced upon them by others, as well as the marginality that they both resist and accept. In discussing the women’s narratives, I identify similarities and differences in the various women’s lives, and unpack the specificities of their individual situations that cause these comparable and contrasting experiences to arise. (Sponsored by the the Claire Garber Goodman Fund).
Cities nationwide have experienced rising rates of childhood obesity leading to increased health concerns and a critical need for more research. Focusing on more in-depth cultural factors, I looked to the primarily African-American community of North Lawndale on Chicago's west side to construct a framework that revealed a system of interrelated cultural elements likely influencing the alarmingly high rate of 51%. Through general participant observation, attendance at two weight management clinics, interviews, journals kept by children, surveys of food resources, and mapping certain community features I was able to examine the reality of combating such an 'epidemic.' (Sponsored by the the Claire Garber Goodman Fund).
The marae, a ceremonial building complex, is a physical statement of Maori identity, kinship, and connection to the land. Architecture, carvings of ancestors, and special protocol are used to construct this statement. Use of the space for life celebrations, teaching, debates, and hosting visitors reinforces the identity of the Maori through transmission of culture. Traditionally built by Maori within a clan, marae have been built in urban spaces in which new institutions of association have replaced kinship networks. This change of users, along with other social processes of urbanization, has influenced the design and use of marae in Auckland and Wellington, New Zealand. In this paper, I examine three urban marae in academic and museum settings: Hotuniu at the Auckland War Memorial Musuem, Waipapa at the University of Auckland, and Rongomaraeroa at Te Papa Tongarewa in Wellington. I discuss how each is used to assert Maori identity in contemporary New Zealand. (Sponsored by the the Claire Garber Goodman Fund).
The concept of "human nature" is a pre-Darwinian one, but has been adopted by sociobiologists and evolutionary psychologists as a Darwinian rallying-point. Predicated on an unproblematic separation of "nature" from "culture," however, aspects of "human nature" have proven far easier to assert than to demonstrate. Nevertheless, it remains popular in the media, fueled by the rise of evolutionary psychology in popular science and its increasing legitimization in mainstream science. I will argue that there is no "human nature" separable from culture, and that consequently the concept of "human nature" is itself fundamentally anti-Darwinian.
This event was sponsored by the Robert A. 1925 and Catherine L. McKennan Fund for Anthropology, and
The Department of Anthropology
Alan Shabel's work centers on the intersection of paleontology, modern ecology, and anthropology. He seeks to reconstruct the ecological and faunal context of human emergence during the Plio-Pleistocene. Current evidence shows that Paranthropus arose about 2.6 million years ago, and Homo appeared soon after. These two hominids lived together in the same habitats for over one million years. How did two such closely related organisms coexist on the same landscape for so long?
October 3, 2006
Fatima Sadiqi is professor of Linguistics at Mohamed ben Abdallah University in Fez, Morocco, and director of its Center for Studies and Research on Women. Her books include Women, Gender, and Language in Morocco (Leiden: Brill 2003) and Grammaire de Berbère (Paris: Harmattan, 1997), and she has published over sixty articles on language and women's issues in Morocco. She is editor-in-chief of Languages and Linguistics, a former Fulbright scholar, and is currently a visiting scholar at the Women's Studies in Religion Program at Harvard University. She also teaches regularly in Dartmouth's Foreign Study Program in Fez, Morocco.
The interplay between gender, sexual identity and language raises issues of power, social inequalities and social norms. Lan-guage plays a crucial role in social structure and hierarchy and its political use resides in exploiting polysemy, inherent in language, in order to achieve ideological effect. Being a multilingual Muslim country, Morocco offers an interesting case study in this respect because of its four major languages: Standard Arabic, Moroccan Arabic, Ber-ber and French. Each of these languages carries specific social mean-ings that significantly interact with gender, politics, and religious power. Whereas Standard Arabic may be termed “male”, Berber is “female”, and Moroccan Arabic and French are both “male” and “female” but with highly distinctive social overtones.
This event was sponsored by:
the Robert A. McKennan Fund of the Department of Anthropology at Dartmouth College,
the John Sloan Dickey Endowment for International Understanding, and
the Rockefeller Center for Public Policy and the Social Sciences.
October 10, 2006
The world-renown archaeologist, Professor Philip Kohl, discussed some distinctive features of Soviet archaeology, including its complex and contradictory relationship with Soviet nationalities policy, its official use of Marxist evolutionary theory, and its focus on ethnogenesis and the determination of archaeological cultures. He also explored the role of intellectuals in separatist political movements that began during the Gorbachev era, presenting several examples of how the remote past was and still is used to justify claims to specific territories and/or provide meaningful frameworks of understanding in a world set free from its former state-sponsored ideology.
May 17 and May 18, 2006
This project explores how “traditional” religion is being used to create a contemporary Hawaiian identity on the Big Island of Hawaii. Are Hawaiians using “traditional” religion to mobilize themselves into cohesive social groups? Is “traditional” religion a substitution of Christianity? Or is “traditional” religion a reaction to Christian New Life Churches? Is the practice of “traditional” religion limited to a narrow demographic group or is it a broader movement? This study will survey three historical religious sites on the Big Island of Hawaii over an eight-week period during the early winter of 2006. Research will consist of observation, participant observation and informal interviews. The data collected will provide information on who is participating (age, gender, educational level. etc.), what their activities consist of, how traditionally based these activities are, and some sense of their reason for engagement. This project will form the basis of a senior thesis.
My thesis is to analyze ethnographically a modern brujo ("spiritual worker") in the urban setting of Caracas, Venezuela. My primary source of information will be my ethnographic field notes/gathered during ten weeks of fieldwork, which were mostly spent living and working alongside a thirty-two year-old brujo named Guillermo Sandoval. The thesis will focus specifically on Guillermo's relationship with his social, economic and spiritual environment, in an effort to illuminate the intricate ties between the practice of brujeria and the environmental conditions that perpetuate its existence. I will also examine the religious system at the heart of Guillermo's personal brand of brujeria. The various religious styles which he incorporates into his practice create a complex syncretic web of rituals and beliefs. Guillermo's constantly transforming practice defies many common conceptions of religion. This thesis will undoubtedly raise questions about the underlying belief system behind the shifting trends of Venezuelan brujeria.
The thesis studies the applicability of modem medical anthropology to the Ancient world, and populations known only through archaeology. In particular, Ancient Egyptian conceptions of illness will be studied through an examination of the treatments of disease visible on mummified remains. Using CAT scans and plain film x-ray of select mummies currently being held in the collections at the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York City and the Manchester Museum of England, an in depth examination will be made to determine both disease and possible human interventions. Relating the findings from diagnostic imaging to artwork and literature, I will attempt to establish bridges from the bodies to the beliefs of the Ancient Egyptians.
My thesis focuses on a grassroots cooperative, Unidas Para Vivir Mejor (United for a Better Life or UPAVIM), located in the squatter settlements of Guatemala City, Guatemala. UPAVIM focuses on community aid programs ranging from medical, economic, and educational all of which are indispensable for the marginalized community. In my research I found three distinct groups co-exist within the organization. Consequently these three groups have different views on the purpose and needs of the organization. These three views represent the problems endemic to development organizations discussed in post-developmental approaches: the differentiation between top-down processes versus bottom-up processes of development. By recognizing post-developmental literature and its applicability to my research, my thesis will address the greater issues posed in the discourse of developmental.
My thesis examines the contestation of Native American burial rights, focusing on the Lower Elwha Klallam Tribe's reburial conflict with the Washington State Department of Transportation and the community of Port Angeles. Contemporary power relations between Natives and the state cannot be understood in a simplistic oppressor-oppressed paradigm, but must be considered as a dialogue, both within modern legal structures as well as with the "traditional" cultural past and the effects of colonial history. My initial field research focused on understanding the daily influence Tse-whit-zen (ch-WHEET-son) had on the Lower Elwha Klallam people, whether through reconnecting with the oldways, providing employment, causing mental and emotional trauma, or influencing tribal and family politics. This thesis, however, will focus on unraveling how the Klallam are using Western systems of justice to achieve their goal of reburial using my fieldwork as an ethnographic grounding to my arguments. By examining the conflict and lawsuit through the lens of the colonial past, I hope to determine how litigation of cultural rights influences the experience of being Klallam today.
The thesis surveys the literature on the race-IQ controversy dealing primarily with the debate in the United States after 1969. Focusing on the debate in the second half of the twentieth century and beyond, I will analyze both the content and character of the arguments on both sides of the issue.
The thesis is a sociology of knowledge, focusing more on the context in which each paper was written as opposed to analysis of the merits of each individual work. I will discuss how scientific knowledge is created in the tradition of Thomas Kuhn, focusing on the social sciences.
I also explore how ideology works its way into scientific discourse, and shapes the flow of that discourse. Thought on race and intelligence are both influenced by scientific observations as well as ideology, and the nature of this interaction changed over time, which in turn changed how the two ideas, race and intelligence, interacted at any given moment in time.
The thesis is a history of science, chronicling the evolution of scientific discourse and knowledge on race, and intelligence. The thesis will also analyze the purpose of scientific discourse, and its function in society.
In this proposal, I deal primarily with the works surrounding Arthur Jensen's 1969 paper, since the majority of the sources I have read come from that time period. The completed thesis has works up to the present, with a particular focus on works surrounding The Bell Curve.
During its height in the Early Classic period Teotihuacan was one of the largest cities in the world. Approximately one third of the residents in the city were non-agricultural craft specialists, producing both utilitarian and elite goods. Cosotlan 23 is an apartment compound located in the northwestern section of the city, which contains unusually dense concentrations of figurine fragments, pottery, and obsidian that give preliminary implications of production at the site. It is currently under study by Kristen Sullivan of Arizona State University as part of her dissertation. In the summer of 2005,1 worked under the direction of Sullivan analyzing the obsidian debitage collected during her extensive surface collection in the fall of 2004. I propose to continue my preliminary analysis and contribute to the current knowledge about obsidian consumption in craft production within the city.
The thesis examines issues of honor and identity creation faced by women attending university in Ankara, Turkey. These issues of identity creation can be divided into three interrelated sociocultural phenomena that affect the creation of women's identity: (1) the degree of personal connection to Islam in contemporary Turkey, (2) public conduct, and (3) interactions with men. There is a large range for the degree of connection to Islam, which directly influences opinions regarding the veil. Some women are very religious, some are very secular, but the majority are somewhere in between. The years spend at university serve as a liminal time for people, particularly women, to experiment with various identities. Since identity is formed within the socially acceptable boundaries, the Turkish university offers a place to push the limits and see how much freedom is permitted. Furthermore, social conduct and interactions between the genders on campus are influenced by but are not identical to the cultural rules for the same phenomena in the larger Turkish society.
Using Middle East Technical University as a case study, this thesis examines several issues: (a) the degree of influence of Islam on the creation of identity of women receiving higher education; (b) how the identities of the university women whose commitment to Islam ranges from strong to moderate to non-existent are expressed through their clothing choices, particularly in regards to issues surrounding the veil; (c) how the university culture and students' identities created in the universities compare to the culture of Turkish society and particularly how social conduct on campus, especially regarding interactions with men, compares to that outside campus; and (d) the role of honor in the establishment of the boundaries in identity creation.
May 12, 2006
It is thought that it is in Late Antiquity that Iranian “national identity” was constructed by the Sasanian Persians. In this endeavor, the Zoroastrian church was the main actor which set forth the idea of Eran as a set territory, and which defined citizenry (Eranagan). This paper will argue against such a monolithic notion for the whole of the Sasanian period and will discuss the various views which the state and religious communities held in regard to the idea of Eran (territory) and Eranagan (citizenship). I would like to contend that these ideas shifted depending on the institutions and groups (Jews, Christians, Zoroastrians and Manichaeans) who lived in Persia from the third to the seventh century CE.
Thus one has to study the issue of ethnicity and boundary of Eran as defined in the imperial inscriptions of the third and fourth centuries, private inscriptions of the post sixth century, Zoroastrian Middle Persian texts, and the material culture to have a grasp of the matter. The need for the use of such diverse material is that it can elucidate how the concept of Eran and being er “Iranian” evolved in Persia and how it was adopted by the Jews and Christians and why it was rejected by the Manicaheans.
To learn more about Professor Touraj Daryaee, please visit his website at http://faculty.fullerton.edu/tdaryaee/
Like syphilis, which was referred to as the “French disease” in Italy, the “Jewish disease” in Germany, and the “Chinese pox” in Japan, AIDS has been regarded as an alien affliction in every society into which it has made inroads. Japan, for its part, has witnessed waves of hysteria linking AIDS to foreign blood, Southeast Asian women, and, more recently, to teenage girls who are said to exchange sex for money in a practice known as enjō kōsai. Hence, over the past two decades a virus once associated with external threats has been domesticated, or rendered familiar, in a nation that had grown accustomed to thinking of itself as immune from world events. This lecture addresses that transformation and shows how AIDS emerged as a potent weapon in gender debates and in discussions that centered on the health of the nation in late 1990s Japan. Drawing on the concept of the “mindful body” put forward by Scheper-Hughes and Lock (1987), JoAnne will argue that AIDS in Japan affects the individual body, the social body, and the body politic alike.
March 6, 2006
Some evidence suggests that West Indian immigrants in Canada are a marginalized and over-burdened group. However, little attention has been given to examining health status and beliefs. We partly redress this gap by investigating health beliefs of West Indian immigrants in Montreal with somatic, emotional or medically unexplained symptoms. The overall aim was to elicit and explore illness narratives, explanatory models, symptom-attribution and help-seeking in the community. A sample of 15 West Indian immigrants took part in semi-structured interviews. We found that participants overwhelmingly ascribed their symptoms to post-migratory experience. They particularly highlighted the importance of two related factors: chronic over-work since migration and irregular patterns of daily living. Many worked long-hours, including over-time and moonlighting. Participants related their irregular patterns of daily living to disturbances of bodily functions (e.g. sleeping, eating) as well as to social functions (e.g. family-life). These themes reflected elements of ethno-physiological beliefs common in the West Indies, as well as North American illness models. Attributing medically unexplained symptoms to overwork and irregularity in personal and social realms may be a socially acceptable way of critiquing perceived injustices in participants' work, social and interpersonal situations. This is especially so because the dominant discourse regarding race and ethnicity in Canada tends to emphasise positive aspects of multiculturalism- only reluctantly acknowledging conflict and inequality. Narratives could be interpreted as an oblique criticism of Canadian society's apparent indifference to participants' ongoing marginalisation.
Download his paper
Dr. Whitley's paper is presently in press with the journal "Anthropology ad Medicine"
Professor Charles A. Reilly Research Scholar and Professor, Institute for Peace and Justice, University of San Diego and former Director, Peace Corps Guatemala Guatemala: Implementing the Peace
January 24, 2006
This event was sponsored by the Office of Alumni Relations, the Martin Luther King Day Committee, and the Department of Anthropology
Charles Reilly is a political scientist and Research Scholar and Professor at the Institute for Peace and Justice at the the University of San Diego. He is the former Director of the Peace Corps and Guatemala. In 2004 he was a Fulbright Visiting Professor, at the University of Ireland and he has been a senior consultant on Civil Society, Inter-American Development Bank. His recent work compares the peace process in Guatemala and Northern Ireland.
Last Updated: 4/22/13