George Soros is one busy man, particularly for an octogenarian. If the rumors are to be believed, he is single-handedly funding agitators in the United States and Hungary (and likely other Central and Eastern European countries as well). He is funneling money into Black Lives Matter and importing Muslim refugees into Europe in order to destroy Christian white Europe. He is the mastermind behind lobbying groups masquerading as civil sector organizations in Hungary that have the goal of bringing down the Hungarian nation. In short, he is the perfect enemy. Nick Cohen writes in a recent Guardian article, “If he did not exist, they would have to invent him. As the ‘George Soros’ they credit with supernatural power does not exist, you could say that they have invented them.”
Even if you are not attending #AAA2017 in Washington, D.C. you have probably already heard about how much it sucked to try to register for it. The stories of frustration and anger on social media were, frankly, pretty epic. Over the past few years, I’ve felt a grudging respect for AAA staff, who have tried to modernize the office and make the AAA into a respectable organization. But it’s hard to find a bright side in the #AAA2017 registration sage. Let’s face it: As the AAA gets more corporate, it begins to suck the way a corporation sucks.
Though Syrian communities pre-date the modern world, Syria’s national identity is only about 72 years old. Since 2011, the country has been involved in a civil war with Sunni rebel groups, ISIS, Al Qaeda affiliates and Kurdish forces up against the Alawite authoritarian Assad regime. All sides of the war have committed human rights violations and contributed to the mass refugee crisis that has only been worsening in recent months. Last month, the United Nations led Geneva peace talks on Syria, but no agreements have been reached and the fighting continues.
Before World War I, Syria was a province of the Ottoman Empire. In 1920, when the Empire was split into mandates, Syria became a mandate under French control, while Palestine and Iraq were British mandates. In 1946, Syria became an independent nation, and France began to remove their troops. The process of gaining independence was rocky, as the French were hesitant to leave, but eventually they withdrew completely, leaving a new government to take over.
The United States is now at a critical political and historical moment. An unprecedentedly regressive Republican political trifecta is poised to repeal rights to abortion. This includes attempts to reverse the landmark 1973 Roe v. WadeSupreme Court decision, which affirmed women’s right to abortion under the Constitution.
The number one rule in practicing anthropology is to be empathetic. This rule is incredibly important in today’s technological landscape. As we get increasingly intimate with our devices, work places, and institutions, producers are beginning to employ empathy —— often under a process called human-centered design. The popularity of this “innovative” design philosophy made me wonder: what were they designing around to begin with?
Savage Minds is pleased to announce our first workshop in artisanal anthropology. As we imagine a future for our discipline that is both sustainable and ethical, it is necessary that we look to the traditions established by our founding mothers and fathers. Theirs was an honest scholarship that was based on a healthy respect for the process of crafting research by hand.
Because I regularly teach the history of anthropology, I have thought a lot about classical texts and the shape of our discipline. I also recently had a chance to sit in on a roundtable on Decolonizing Anthropology at #AES2017. Sitting in that panel reminded me of something that Max Weber said. I first encountered Weber’s thoughts on value ideals and concept formation in the 1990s. That was back in the day when Weber used to come over to my apartment and we would smoke out and watch anime. The time I’m thinking of, he got the munchies really bad and ate a pint of Ben & Jerry’s — a pint — before we even got to the first commercial break of the Cowboy Bebop episode we were watching. I was all like: “Freckles” — back then everyone called him Freckles — “Freckles, you just ate a pint of Ben and Jerry’s in, like, two minutes” and Weber just looked at me and said:
“The New Paradigm”
Yesterday marked exactly a year since Ayahuasca Healings submitted to the DEA their petition for exemption from the Controlled Substances Act. The cover letter, dated April 4, 2016, sets the tone for some of the backpedaling that will follow:
At the outset, petitioners wish to admit that they were previously mistaken about the current state of the law regarding Ayahuasca…This misconception has since been corrected, and Petitioners offer their sincere apologies for any prior conduct which the DEA believes might have run afoul of its regulatory agenda…[AHNAC 2016:1]
Just when you think that The Bell Curve has been thoroughly debunked, it rears its ugly head…again. It’s like a weed that just won’t go away–and that should give us something to think about. Charles Murray, one of the authors of that book, is apparently on a US tour promoting his ideas about intelligence and race to a new generation. Oh great. But, all things considered, we shouldn’t be surprised that these ideas have once again resurfaced in the public sphere (they never really went anywhere, after all). Now is probably a good time to ask why these ideas persist, and why they get so much applause and support from certain segments of American society. Hmmm.