Within the question of the professionalisation of the discipline lies a still largely unexplored area of how Anthropology serves as a western, largely white, middle-class mode of ‘consumption’, specifically the consumption of knowledge about the world that has been ‘appropriately’ filtered, organized, and translated. Of course getting a degree in Anthropology is not just like any other form of consumption, just as it is not merely an expression of curiosity: the process results in formal certification.… Read More Anthropology: The Empire on which the Sun Never Sets (Part 3)
Anthropology as a discipline, and anthropology as curiosity about difference or as a philosophy of the human condition, certainly overlap but they are not the same. Enforcers of the discipline have tended to monopolistically speak in the name of the project as a whole. This appropriation, whether intentional or simply a mistake, confuses analysis of the purposes of institutional Anthropology.… Read More Anthropology: The Empire on which the Sun Never Sets (Part 2)
Questions and debates about the end of anthropology are highlighted here for their potential value in revealing what the ‘crisis talk’ in the discipline really means, and what it may be masking. In this article the reader is invited to reflect on several questions: about anthropology as a discipline or as a praxis; about how anthropology can be not just revitalised, but revolutionised; about the place of ethnography in anthropology; and, the quest for distinction and the accumulation of disciplinary capital. More broadly, this article deals with the restructuring of anthropology within a context of continued imperialism.… Read More Anthropology: The Empire on which the Sun Never Sets (Part 1)
Elitists, isolated in their ivory towers, serving out life terms in self-imposed exile. It’s a great image, if you are writing a comedic novel, or perhaps aiming to produce a take on Great Expectations applied to an academic setting, or likewise some rendition of One Hundred Years of Solitude. One can indeed think of how… Read More Is the “lone researcher” a myth?