Anthropology and the Boycott of Israeli Academic Institutions: Part 1

Savage Minds welcomes guest blogger Anthropologists for the Boycott of Israeli Academic Institutions.

We are pleased to present the following two reflections by Mick Taussig and J. Lorand Matory as part of a two-week guest blog series entitled Anthropology and the Boycott of Israeli Academic Institutions. These reflections on why anthropologists should support the boycott join similar statements by Steven Caton and Talal Asad.

Writing Good Anthropology in a Time of Crisis: Lessons from the Nepal Earthquake

…ish this essay by guest author Heather Hindman. Heather is Associate Professor of Asian Studies and Anthropology at the University of Texas at Austin. Her book Mediating the Global: Expatria’s Forms and Consequences in Kathmandu (Stanford University Press, 2013) explores the employment practices and daily lives of elite aid workers and diplomats over the last several decades of changes in the development industry, with a critical analysis of human resources management and cross-cultural communic
Anthropologists Have Discovered a Totally New Human Ancestor
There’s a new branch on the human family tree. Anthropologistssay they’ve found another early human ancestor, who lived right beside Australopithecus afarensis on the plains of what is now Ethiopia. Casts of the upper and lower jaw. Credit: Laura …
3.3-million-year-old Fossil Bones Unraveled in Ethiopia, Lucy’s Relatives?Times Gazette
New Human Ancestors Discovered (PHOTOS) | The Weather ChannelThe Weather Channel
New Species of Ancient Human Found in AfricaTIME
The We and Them of Anthropology

I think about the ‘we’ and ‘them’ of anthropology quite frequently. I have always found the royal ‘we’ a bit of funny notion. Who is included in this ‘we’? Such a simple word, all of two letters, and yet it has an ambivalent presence. It can be an act of loving kinship—we are here together. We look out for one another. Or it can be an act of violence through the denial of difference: ‘we’ are just like you, so your concerns are invalid. We know what’s best. We are not amused.

The Case of the Ornamental Anthropologist

Netflix, if you believe what you read, is more computer than corporation. It famously operates through an interlocking set of finely tuned algorithms powered by the immense amounts of information that the company collects. These algorithms allow Netflix to anticipate everything from what you might want to watch at a particular time of day to the actors and directors whom it should hire for its original programming. This is Big Data put to work, a buzzword come to life.

Biological Anthropology in 2014: Beyond the Traditional


Here I review some of the newsworthy developments in biological anthropology for the year 2014. This review essay focuses broadly upon three areas: (1) the illumination of sexual harassment and assault issues in fieldwork settings by Clancy and colleagues (2014), (2) the abandonment of traditional concept of race in favor of a more sophisticated geographic and genetic view of ancestry in human populations, and (3) the increasing importance of using ancient DNA techniques toward an understanding of human prehistoric movements and adaptations.

Lauren Moore
University of Kentucky

For the May installment of the Food Pedagogy Interview Series, we hear from Dr. Clare Sammells, Assistant Professor of Anthropology at Bucknell University. Her popular 200-level course “Food, Eating, and Culture” asks each student to become a “Food Expert” on one particular food over the course of the semester—a technique which brings topical depth to the theoretical breadth of the course.

If you would like to participate, or would like to nominate an excellent instructor for the interview series, please email

savageminds and meet in person

Back in the day when the original group of Minds first got this blog all stood up, the anthropology scene was in a different, pre-Twitter phase of deeper engagement and longer entries. We knew each other. Since then some blogs have given up the ghost, others have moved on to bigger and better things, and two (or three!) generations of anthropology blogs have replaced them.


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