At the AAA meetings in Washington, DC

We’ll be  participating in a session at the meetings of the American Anthropological Association on Saturday, Dec. 2, 2017, between 2-3:45.  It will be a roundtable discussion entitled “Voicing the Ancestors:  Readings for  the Present From Anthropology’s Past.”  Here is the description:  “Anthropological texts that are fashionable and salient during one period of history may eventually fall into insignificance, only to be rediscovered and revived a generation or two later still, not solely as history but as currently useful theory. And of course, texts that have remained in obscurity hold the potential to become theoretically salient again. Participants in this roundtable have been asked to pick a text from the discipline’s past that they find historically, theoretically, ethically, or politically important to the present of the discipline. They will read selected passages from the chosen text aloud, thereby giving voice to an intellectual ancestor, and comment on its historical context and ongoing significance. In this way, and within the confines of a conventionally organized conference roundtable session, we are inviting the spirits of our intellectual ancestors to join us in the hope of arousing awe and appreciation as well as renewed historical and theoretical curiosity. This roundtable is the fourth edition of an annual session in this format begun in 2014. As in the past editions, the aim is to create a forum where current anthropologists can connect with the work of their predecessors in meaningful and generative ways.”  Our ancestor of choice is Raymond Firth.


Raymond Firth Lecture

We had the honor of delivering the Raymond Firth Lecture at the meetings of the European Society for Oceanists in Munich, Germany, June 29th – July 2nd, 2017. Find the text of the lecture here.

Office Space: Deborah Gewertz

Italianate in style, Morgan Hall was constructed in 1853 as the college’s first library. Nowadays, it’s home to the Departments of American Studies and Anthropology and Sociology. On the second floor—where college trustees were infamously locked in their boardroom during student protests of the ’70s—is the office of Deborah Gewertz, the G. Henry Whitcomb 1874 Professor of Anthropology. Here’s a look at some of the things she’s collected over the years.

Read more about the office space of Deborah Gewertz in a recent feature article from Amherst Magazine:  read more