Keep Your Money: A Series on Dignity

This is the first part of a series on dignity that will appear on ZA, featuring the usual collage of songs, history, documents, and short essays. While there are treatments of “dignity” in Western philosophy, it is interesting to note the absence of the idea as a concept in the works of most anthropologists, which […]

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Benjamin Franklin's Great Seal of the U.S.

The Exodus Story and Western Conceptions of Progress, Movement, Revolution

Exodus: Movement of the People Thinking still of Gastón Cordillo’s essays on resonance—“Resonance and the Egyptian Revolution” and “The Speed of Revolutionary Resonance,” and others writing about “The Phenomenology of the Resonance-Reverberation Doublet”—I remember writing to Gastón that the concept of resonance reminded me of “agitation,” which raised other associations of political terms that are […]

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Anthropology, Secrecy, and Wikileaks

[This is the third and final article in a series of three about Wikileaks. The first was “The Wikileaks Revolution” that led to a parallel article published in CounterPunch. The second one was “Wikileaks and the Moral Dualism of the U.S. State Department.”] “I,______, in the Presence of the Mighty Ones, do of my own free […]

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When I hear the word “culture”…

For more than a hundred years anthropology has been spreading sweetness and light. And now that the results are in—now that even the strangest customs from the remotest places have been recognized as truly human and entirely natural—it is plain that the popular verdict has been an enthusiastic assent. Its ethical understandings are widely regarded […]

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0.18: Anthropology and the Rise of the Social Sciences within the Structures of Knowledge – Immanuel Wallerstein

Professional Knowledge Creation in the World-System Building an anti-imperialist “anthropology,” plus an anthropology that studies imperialism, and that studies itself as a received invention of imperialism, means much more than just analyzing and questioning how anthropologists served this or that colonial venture. It means totally unthinking anthropology as a social science; more than that, it […]

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0.185: Terms of Incorporation, Concepts of Domination

Phrases such as “decolonizing anthropology”* and “anthropology and the colonial encounter” have become salient in anthropology especially since they are the titles of two of the better known, most widely quoted books on the subject. What subject? That is what is lacking clarity, because presumably the phrases above are meant to mean something, and if […]

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This Be The Verse

This Be The Verse — by Philip Larkin They fuck you up, your mum and dad. They may not mean to, but they do. They fill you with the faults they had And add some extra, just for you. But they were fucked up in their turn By fools in old-style hats and coats, Who […]

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Response: The OAC’s Name

Hopefully this new post will not bring to an abrupt end the discussion that continued in the comments to the last post. One of the administrators of the “Open Anthropology Cooperative” has issued the OAC’s first coherent statement regarding “the name issue,” which as I have explained is about much more than just a name. […]

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The Particulars of a Name

“To understand a name you must be acquainted with the particular of which it is a name.” –Bertrand Russell (p. 182) “The author of the Iliad is either Homer or, if not Homer, somebody else of the same name.” –Aldous Huxley (source) As Huxley also said, “facts do not cease to exist because they are […]

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