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Gustaaf Houtman

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ANTHROPOLOGY TODAY provides a forum for the application of anthropological analysis to public and topical issues. - anthropology jobs

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Covers AT June 2016, volume 32 issue 3

Front cover: STANDSTILLBehzad Sarmadi tells the story of Dubai’s descent into an economic crisis in 2009 by seizing on the financial concept of 'standstill'.The government of Dubai publicly (and unilaterally) invoked this concept in late 2009 so as to pause the debt obligations of a 'government-related' corporation in the face…Continue

Tags: covers, 2016, June

Started by Gustaaf Houtman in AT JUNE 2016 Jun 15.

VASILIKI P. NEOFOTISTOS On the ISIL attacks in Western Europe and elsewhere

In this guest editorial, the author reflects on the inequitable ways in which ISIL attacks are covered in the media, between the West and the rest.Wiley Online LibraryContinue

Tags: NEOFOTISTOS, VASILIKI, 2016, June, Article

Started by Gustaaf Houtman in AT JUNE 2016 Jun 14.

EVTHYMIOS PAPATAXIARCHIS Being ‘there’: At the front line of the ‘European refugee crisis’ - part 2

In the course of 2015, Skala Sykamnias, a fishing village and tourist idyll on the northern coast of Lesbos, by accident of its geographical location, became the informal gate into Europe for more than 200.000 refugees. In this article the author analyzes the massive flows of people and things that transverse his fieldwork site from different directions: the great diversity of actors enacting what are often dissonant ideals and strategies; the various theatres of operation and reception…Continue

Tags: PAPATAXIARCHIS, EVTHYMIOS, 2016, June, Article

Started by Gustaaf Houtman in AT JUNE 2016 Jun 14.

BENJAMIN D. HOPKINS The longue durée of the Human Terrain: Politics, cultural knowledge and the technical fix

The recent end of the Human Terrain System run by the US Army has brought to a close one of the most recent insidious challenges to the field of anthropology. But while the anthropological elements of the programme have been well documented, and contested, its historical roots have not. The HTS and cultural knowledge apparatus of the American defence establishment draw deeply upon the wells of British scholar administrators of the nineteenth century. Of particular importance, especially in…Continue

Tags: HOPKINS, BENJAMIN, 2016, June, Article

Started by Gustaaf Houtman in AT JUNE 2016 Jun 14.

BEHZAD SARMADI Following a ‘standstill’: An ethnographic approach to financialization

This article addresses Dubai's recent financial crisis, bringing an ethnographic approach to 'financialization'. It does so by repurposing the financial concept of 'standstill'. Focusing on the consequences of the Dubai government's infamous 'standstill announcement', in late 2009, it argues that unpacking the literal and figurative registers of this concept offers insights into the political economy and lived experiences of financial crises.…Continue

Tags: SARMADI, BEHZAD, 2016, June, Article

Started by Gustaaf Houtman in AT JUNE 2016 Jun 14.

CINZIA GRECO Blaming the southern victim: Cancer and the Italian ‘Southern Question’ in Terra dei fuochi and Taranto

In this article, the author addresses two critical environmental situations in southern Italy: the Terra dei fuochi (Land of fires) near Naples, characterized by a history of illegal disposal of toxic waste, and Taranto, where the Ilva steel plants have a record of exceeding the legal emission limits for several pollutants. Despite a recognition of these situations, public political discourse in Italy still tends to link the higher than average incidence of cancer in the two areas to lifestyles…Continue

Tags: GRECO, CINZIA, 2016, June, Article

Started by Gustaaf Houtman in AT JUNE 2016 Jun 14.

NARRATIVE. BRIAN CALLAN VS JOYCE DALSHEIM Thinking through duration: A response to Joyce Dalsheim 31(1)

This narrative offers an alternative Jewish Israeli 'duration' of the abduction described by Dalsheim. It agrees that the weight of past experience shapes both present perception and future imagination, reproducing the sense of 'intractable' conflict but argues that subjective and collective experience is mediated by what C. Wright Mills called the 'cultural apparatus'. Taking the case of Israeli Jews who work in solidarity with Palestinian activists, some of whom were raised in extremely…Continue

Tags: 2016, June, Narrative

Started by Gustaaf Houtman in AT JUNE 2016 Jun 14.


Unlike journalists, anthropologists will tend to mostly anonymize the places they visit. However, as van der Geest has pointed out in these pages before, anonymity is not always what the people we research want from us. In this narrative, A.F. Robertson and Laura Cardús i Font show how our writing can become an asset to the communities we study, who, like us, are seeking to confirm their identities and improve their reputation in the overall scheme of things. In this narrative, the authors…Continue

Tags: 2016, June, Narrative

Started by Gustaaf Houtman in AT JUNE 2016 Jun 14.

BOOKS. DAN HICKS The return of ethnographic theory: HAU and when

The author reviews the events surrounding the launch of HAU’s expanded edition of The gift, and reflects on their implications for history and theory in anthropology.Wiley Online LibraryContinue

Tags: 2016, June, Books, HICKS, DAN

Started by Gustaaf Houtman in AT JUNE 2016 Jun 14.


Blog Posts

New online anthropology course starts 29.02.2016

Posted by Gustaaf Houtman on February 16, 2016 at 7:30 0 Comments

On 29 February, as part of a new initiative by University College London, a free five week e-learning course (MOOC) will start called Why we post: The anthropology of social media on the FutureLearn platform at

This is the first free major on-line course in anthropology by a European…


Leeds International Film Festival, Arctic Cinema, 9-13 November 2015

Posted by Gustaaf Houtman on September 28, 2015 at 13:34 0 Comments

The Arctic is hot. Everywhere you turn these days, the Polar regions are making headlines: climate change, geopolitics, mining, tourism, trade. These topical issues are seriously affecting one of the planet’s most malleable regions. Researchers at the University of Leeds and Leeds Beckett University are collaborating with the Leeds International Film Festival ( to curate a week-long programme of Arctic cinema, showcasing films, talks and…


Real vampires?

Posted by Keira Dignan on September 22, 2015 at 13:41 0 Comments

Real life vampires’ must be met with ‘tolerance and respect’, writes Kim Wall for The Guardian, following a study conducted by sociologists DJ Williams and Emily Prior on ‘Fears of Coming out of the Coffin’. ‘Vampires’ are people who believe that they must ‘feed’ regularly from…


Paul Sillitoe in the news

Posted by Gustaaf Houtman on August 17, 2015 at 13:00 0 Comments

Paul Sillitoe and Mako John Kuwimb's have jointly reported on the Jared Diamond vs New Yorker controversy. Paul Sillitoe is a highly regarded anthropologist expert on Papua New Guinea, and Mako John Kuwimb contributed a…


Scottish referendum - Ullrich Kockel

Posted by Gustaaf Houtman on September 19, 2014 at 10:39 0 Comments

The people of Scotland have spoken, and the Prime Minister promises their voices will be heard. Following two years of campaigning generating unprecedented public participation and reaching previously disengaged group in large numbers, the referendum delivered a solid majority for Scotland remaining in the UK. According to opinion polls, the youngest voters were predominantly inclined to vote "no". On the night of polling day, one young man on Edinburgh’s Royal Mile, having just voted "no",…


From 'Human Terrain' 'to Human Domain' - Another Pentagon concept?

Posted by Gustaaf Houtman on February 27, 2013 at 19:00 0 Comments

Sisk, Richard 2013. 'Human Domain' Enters Future Army War Plans. News, 20 February 2013.

Keith Walker at AUSA 2012.

FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla. -- The Army's core mission as the world's dominant land power must meld with the challenges posed by future conflicts that will increasingly be fought over "human terrain," senior Army officials…


Human Terrain continues

Posted by Gustaaf Houtman on February 27, 2013 at 17:00 0 Comments

Hanley, Ken 2013. Op-Ed: Problematic Human Terrain System continues despite criticism. Digital Journal, 21 February

VandenBroek, T 2013. Army plows ahead with troubled war-zone program. USA Today, 21 February.



Akbar Ahmed on drones

Posted by Gustaaf Houtman on February 18, 2013 at 11:00 0 Comments

American University professor Akbar Ahmed talked about his book, The Thistle and the Drone: How America’s War on Terror Became a Global War on Tribal Islam. He also talked about the debate over the use of drones by the Obama administration. This interview, recorded at American University in Washington, DC, was part of Book TV’s College Series.…


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ANTHCAL - Calendar of events as published in the last issue of ANTHROPOLOGY TODAY

We try to avoid errors, but please check dates before making a special journey. Entries are best submitted with a current web address to which readers can refer for further details. AnthCal is online at


A procession (to 29.05.2016); Dressed as a New Zealander (to 03.07.2016); Adaptation (to 16.05.2015); My Siberian year, 1914-1915 (to 30.06.2016); Pitt Rivers Museum, University of Oxford, South Parks Road, Oxford, OX1 3PP; tel. +44 (0)1865 270927; http://www.prm. Krishna in the garden of Assam: The cultural context of an Indian textile (to 15.08.2016); Containing the divine: A sculpture of the Pacific god Aa’; Drawn to Sicily: Early British exploration of the classical world. Africa Gallery (permanent); Living and dying (permanent). British Museum, Great Russell Street, London WC1B 3DG; tel. +44 (0)20 7323 8299 (information desk); whatson/exhibitions/index.html Favela: Joy and pain in the city (to 28.09.2016); Cook and the Kangaroo (to 05.06.2016); Revisiting Romania: Dress and identity (to 01.09.2016); Centenary gallery: 100 years of collecting (permanent). Horniman Museum, 100 London Road, Forest Hill, London SE23 3PQ; tel. +44(0)20 8699 1872; http://www.horniman. Hide and seek: Looking for children in the past (to 29.01.2017); Tuniit: Arctic giants & ivory miniatures (to September 2016). Museum of Archaeology and Anthropology, Downing Street, Cambridge CB2 3DZ; tel +44 (0)1223 333516;

JUNE 2016

1-3 Jun 2016 Hybrid communities, societies, subjectivities and spaces. Calgary, Canada. https:// congress/2016/home 3 Jun 2016 16.30 Research in progress: Anna Ruddock. Getting In: ‘Rank’ as biographical number at the All India Institute of Medical Sciences (AIIMS). RAI. 8-11 Jun 2016 Submerged conflicts: Ethnography of the invisible resistances in the Quotidian. Bergamo, Italy. http://www.etnografiaricercaqualitativa. it/?page_id=62 9-12 Jun 2016 ACSS2016 - The Asian conference on the social sciences. conferences/acss2016/ 13 Jun 2016 17.30. Evolving perspectives on tourism’s interaction with nature - connecting at last? Andrew Holden. RAI. 17 Jun 2016 16.30. Research in progress: Emilio G. Berrocal. Thinking with rap: Thinking, Anthropocene, racism. RAI. 30 Jun 2016 London anthropology day. British Museum Clore Centre.

JULY 2016

4-7 Jul 2016 ASA conference, University of Durham. Theme: Footprints and futures – The time of anthropology. 4-8 Jul 2016 Re-ordering diversity: Humanitarian assistance in the context of forced migration and displacement. Tubingen, Germany. https:// 12-15 Jul 2016 IASFM 16: Rethinking forced migration and displacement: Theory, policy, and praxis. Poznan, Poland. 14-15 July 2016 Strangers, aliens and foreigners. Mansfield College, Oxford, UK. 14-16 Jul 2016 Urban economies conference. Cultural perspectives on grassroots entrepreneurs and neighborhood economies, University of Munich, Germany. 20-23 Jul 2016 14th EASA conference. Anthropological legacies and human futures. Department of Human Science for Education ‘Riccardo Massa’ & Department of Sociology and Social Research at The University of Milano-Bicocca.


2-5 Aug 2016 11th international conference on interdisciplinary social sciences. An age and its ends: Social science in the era of the Anthropocene. Imperial College, London. 3-6 Aug 2016 130th Brazilian Association biennial meeting. João Pessoa - PB, Brazil.


6-7 Sep 2016 Second international conference on identity studies. Vienna, Austria. 13-14 Sep 2016 Roots and legacies international conference. Interdisciplinary Research Foundation. Warsaw, Poland. 23-24 Sep 2016 Narratives of displacement conference. Mansfield College, Oxford. 30 Sep 2016 15.00. RAI AGM. Followed by Henry Myers Lecture at approx. 17.00. Stevenson Lecture Theatre, Clore Education Centre, British Museum.


7 Oct 2016 16.30. Research in progress: Camelia Dewan. Embanking the Sundarbans: Political ecology and gender in the southwest coastal zone of Bangladesh. RAI. 20 Oct 2016 10.00. Reviewer meets reviewed. The British on holiday: Charter tourism, identity and consumption. Anthropology Library, British Museum. Bookings/enquiries: TGoodliffe@ 21 Oct 2016 16.30. Research in progress: Christine Moderbacher. Deconstructing a rhinoceros! Voices from Molenbeek/Brussels. RAI. 27 Oct 2016 Folklore and anthropology in conversation. Joint symposium by The Folklore Society & the RAI.


4 Nov 2016 16.30. Research in progress: Joseph Bristley. Animal economics: Exchange and personhood in pastoral Mongolia. RAI. 8 Nov 2016 Austrian anthropology day. At the British Academy. 11 Nov 2016 17.30 [Note: Change of date]. Huxley Lecture. Margaret Lock. The British Museum’s Clore Centre. Nov 2016 AAA annual meeting. Minneapolis Convention Center. Minneapolis, MN 24 Nov 2016 Third annual Blacking lecture at University of Roehampton. Title t.b.a. Georgiana Gore


2 Dec 2016 16.30 Research in progress: The perennial expansion of the Venezuelan frontier (the school, the church and the government). Natalia Garcia Bonet. RAI.

MARCH 2017

29 Mar-1 Apr 2017 15th RAI Festival of ethnographic film. Watershed Cinema, Bristol.

MAY 2017

2-7 May 2017 IUAES Inter-congress, Ottawa, Canada. http://

JUNE 2017

29 Jun 2017 London anthropology day. Clore Centre, British Museum.


29 Nov-3 Dec 2017 AAA annual meeting. Marriott Wardman Park Hotel & Omni Shoreham Hotel Washington, DC


11-15 Dec 2017 Joint ASA.AAS/ASAANZ conference, Adelaide.


29 Nov-3 Dec 2017 AAA annual meeting. Washington DC

JULY 2018

30 Jul-3 Aug 2018 World (of) encounters: The past, present and future of anthropological knowledge. 18th ICAES World Congress 2018, Florianópolis, Brazil.


14-18 Nov 2018 AAA Meeting. San Jose Convention Center San Jose, CA


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