Tsheboeng, Dr. Alfred, U. of Botswana, Gaborone, Botswana - To aid the 12th Congress of the Pan African Archaeological Association for Prehistory and Related Studies, 2005, U. of Botswana, in collaboration with Dr. Gilbert Pwiti
Panella, Dr. Cristiana, Royal Museum for Cenral Africa, Tervuren, Belgium - To aid conference on 'Norms in the Margins and Margins of the Norm. The Social Construction of Illegality,' 2012, Tervuren, Brussels, and Leuven
'Norms in the Margins and Margins of the Norm. The Social Construction of Illegality'
October 25-27, 2012, Tervuren, Brussels, and Leuven, Belgium
Organizer: Dr. Cristiana Panella (Royal Museum for Central Africa, Tervuren)
The international conference represented an interdisciplinary dialogue between social anthropologists, political scientists, historians, sociologists, and historians around social and political production of illegality and of norms. Thus, plenary lectures and papers pertained both to the production of the categories of illegality and to the production of ethical categories in the underworld, while stressing the intertwining and ambiguous entanglements of legal and illegal networks and creation of moral economies. The conference took place in three locations: the Royal Museum for Central Africa (opening session), the Université Libre de Bruxelles (ten panels), and the Katholieke Universiteit Leuven (ending lecture). Panels analyzed from different approaches the shifting spaces of legality and morality and structural interfaces between legal and illegal frames, by focusing on themes including: moralities of 'illegal' actors; legal/illegal in post-socialist states; capitalism and the countryside; sovereignty issues of political mobilization and youth; informality and urban governance; governmentality of crime; legal/illegal encounters through different spheres of value; new challenges of museums; and everyday corruption. This conference has opened new theoretical and comparative spaces for a cross-cutting analysis of 'illegal contexts' through co-acting multiple spheres of value.
Lambek, Dr. Michael Joshua, U. of Toronto, Toronto, Canada - To aid workshop on 'The Anthropology of Ordinary Ethics,' 2008, U. Toronto
'The Anthropology of Ordinary Ethics'
October 3-6, 2008, University of Toronto, Toronto, Canada
Organizer: Michael Joshua Lambek (University of Toronto)
Goals of this workshop were to advance anthropological theory by exploring the nature, grounds, and centrality of ethics for social life and, more particularly, to refine and elaborate an understanding of the ethical entailments of ordinary (everyday) speech and action. Participants in the workshop addressed the following central questions: What is the place of the ethical in human life and how might attention to the ethical impact on anthropological theory and enrich our understanding of thought, speech, and social action? Insofar as the ethical is implicit in human action, how do we render it visible? How can anthropology best draw from and contribute to philosophical debate and to a broader conceptualization and demonstration of the ethical in human life? A total of 21 socio-cultural and linguistic
anthropologists presented and discussed their pre-circulated papers, some of which were more conceptual while others drew upon and illustrated empirical research. Presenters also engaged with two philosophers, one political theorist, and four additional anthropologists as assigned discussants, plus a number of chairs and auditors. A volume of the papers has been accepted for publication by Fordham University Press.
Lambek, Michael (ed.) 2010. Ordinary Ethics: Anthropology, Language, and Action. Fordham University Press: New York
El-Tom, Dr. Abdullahi Osmon, National U. of Ireland, Maynooth, Ireland - To aid conference on 'EASA 2010: Crisis and Imagination,' 2010, National U. of Ireland Maynooth
Preliminary abstract: At the beginning of the 21st Century, a global economic crisis reminds us of the fragility of both our institutions and our epistemologies. Mutually compounding political, medical, ecological, cultural, economic, religious, demographic, ideological and military crises increasingly define our world and appear to delimit the boundaries of the knowable as well as the possibilities for collective action. We have moved from the 'old' crises which occupied the attention of anthropology in the past: acculturation, migration, (de)colonisation, ecological change and adaptation, fission of lineage systems, etc., to a series of ostensibly 'new' crises: global warming and the limits of non-renewable energy, AIDS, neo-imperialism, resource wars, military humanitarianism, the break-up of post-colonial multiethnic states and post-socialist blocs, the end of 'conventional warfare,' biotechnological invention and resulting ethical quandaries, new secularisms versus new fundamentalisms, and of course, global financial chaos and the crises of the 'Washington consensus' and neoliberal economics. How can anthropologists respond to, and help to resolve, these crises? EASA 2010 invites anthropologists to examine causes and consequences of contemporary crises and to contribute to imagining responses to them.
The European Association of Social Anthropologists (EASA), established in 1989, is Europe's largest association in sociocultural anthropology, with approximately 1200 members, including the most prominent anthropologists in Europe. The biannual EASA conference will host upwards of 1,000 social anthropologists from around Europe and the world in Maynooth, Ireland. The local organizer of the conference is the department of anthropology at the National University of Ireland Maynooth -- the only department of anthropology in the Republic of Ireland.
Alexiu, Dr. Teodor Mircea, West U. of Timisoara, Timisoara, Romania - To aid 4th InASEA conference on 'Region, Regional Identity and Regionalism in Southeastern Europe,' 2007, Timisoara, in collaboration with Dr. Ulf Brunnbauer
'Region, Regional Identity And Regionalism In Southeastern Europe'
May 24-27, 2007, West University of Timisoara, Timisoara, Romania
Organizers: Dr. Teodor Mercea Alexiu (West University of Timisoara) and Dr. Ulf Brunnbauer (Free University - Berlin)
The conference brought together 137 researchers from 23 countries of southeastern Europe, the European Union, and the United States. It was organized by the International Association for Southeast European Anthropology (InASEA) and the Department of Sociology-Anthropology from the Faculty of Sociology and Psychology, West University of Timisoara. The conference aimed to stimulate a more systematic and problem-oriented research in regionalism matters of southeastern Europe and to enable contacts between specialists in the field, and thus open up an exchange of research results. Focusing on the region of southeastern Europe, participants at the conference discussed issues such as regional cultures and their construction, regional identities, everyday 'functioning' of regions, cross-border regions, social and cultural consequences of regional disparities and regional identities. The conference was made possible with support from Wenner-Gren, West University of Timisoara, Sudosteuropa-Gesellschaft (Germany), Timosoara's Mayoralty and the Local Council, and the city's Ethnographic Museum.
Raulin, Dr. Anne, U. of Paris X, Nanterre, France - To aid conference on 'Parallaxes: Anthropologies of the Western World for the 21st Century,' 2007, NYU in Paris, in collaboration with Dr. Susan C. Rogers
'Parallaxes: Anthropologies of the Western World for the 21st Century'
June 7-8, 2007, New York University in Paris, Paris, France
Organizers: Dr. Anne Raulin (University of Paris X - Nanterre) and Dr. Susan C. Rogers (New York University)
This two-day workshop brought together a small group of American anthropologists of France and French anthropologists who have undertaken fieldwork in (non-native) USA. The aim was to begin exploring how these researchers' experience may illuminate the possibilities and challenges of producing anthropological knowledge under circumstances that were relatively unusual in the 20th century but may become more commonplace in the 21st. The observer and the observed come from societies which, though culturally distinct, share roughly equal geopolitical and intellectual standing in the worlds they frequent. Intensive closed-session discussion drew from a set of short pre-circulated papers based on each participant's research experience in France and/or the US. It was organized in a way meant to draw out the anthropologists' reciprocal positions as each other's natives and ethnographers, and to foster collaborative thinking about a framework that would underline the implications for the practice of anthropology more generally. Topics included the site-specific methodological implications of ethnographers' social and national identities; the relationship of anthropology in each country to the state and to academic institutions; the significance of such notions as 'race,' 'community,' 'state,' 'culture' in each national setting, and the variations in their meaning as they move between vernacular and analytical uses, as well as from one cultural context or intellectual tradition to another; and forms of plausible moral authority performed within various kinds of institutional settings in each country.
Little, Dr. Peter Deal, Emory U., Atlanta, GA - To aid workshop on 'Tax Matters: Anthropological Theory and Ethnographic Methods to the Service of a New Fiscal Sociology,' 2013, Emory U., in collaboration with Dr. Jose Maria Munoz and Dr. Thomas Cantens
Preliminary abstract: Taxes are one of the long-established, generalized, and persistent means through which individuals and groups experience relationships with their government, the legal system, and the broader society of which they are members. 'New fiscal sociology' has been recently proposed as the name for an emerging field of scholarly inquiry that places the relations of taxation at the center of historical and comparative accounts of social change. This and other recent academic ventures have attracted contributions from economics, sociology, political science, history, geography, law, and accounting. Anthropologists have been conspicuously absent in this new wave of scholarship.
Through the critical examination of tax policy, law, and administration in a series of diverse settings, we will take important steps in fulfilling the promise of anthropology for the study these critical issues. Three premises guide our efforts: our readiness to rise to the challenges of interdisciplinary research, our determination to take the technical aspects of taxation seriously, and our emphasis on rigorous ethnographic engagement. Confronted with the wide open frontiers of anthropological research on taxation, the workshop chooses to focus on three sets of questions: fiscal payments and the social contract; taxation and bureaucratic knowledge practices; and global fiscal governance. We intend to contribute thus to major theoretical debates in political, economic, and legal anthropology.
Forde, Dr. Maarit, U. of West Indies, St. Augustine, Trinidad and Tobago - To aid workshop on 'Anthropological Perspectives to Death and Mortuary Rituals in the Caribbean,' 2011, Cave Hill, Barbados, in collaboration with Dr. Yanique Hume
Preliminary abstract: The workshop brings together 15 anthropologists interested in the cultural construction and practices of death and mourning in the Caribbean context. The purpose of the workshop is to discuss and develop ethnographically informed theory of the anthropology of death and to publish the proceedings as an edited volume. The workshop provides a forum for anthropologists specialized in religion and kinship not only in the Anglophone Caribbean, but in the Spanish, French and Dutch-speaking areas as well as in Caribbean diasporas to discuss and further their analyses of mortuary rituals and understandings of death and the hereafter. These analyses intervene in current debates in the anthropology of religion in the Caribbean in which writers have sought to answer how, and by whom, religious beliefs and practices have been produced and reproduced, rather than concerning themselves with pinning down the essence or boundaries of particular religious formations. Problematizing epistemologies of religion, this debate, and the research produced by the proposed workshop, build on important theorizing on Atlantic modernity, in which the Caribbean has a central space. While the focus of the workshop is decidedly regional, the theoretical debates to with it seeks to contribute are more generally relevant ones in the anthropology of death, ritual, and kinship.
Barkai, Dr. Ran, Tel-Aviv U., Tel-Aviv, Israel - To aid workshop on 'The Origins of Recycling: A Paleolithic Perspective,' 2013, Tel-Aviv and Carmel, in collaboration with Dr. Manuel Vaquero
Preliminary abstract: In recent years a growing body of evidence regarding human recycling, reusing and resharpening activities in Paleolithic times has been accumulated, as well as a growing awareness among scholars towards these aspects of research in Paleolithic studies.It is our intention to gather together scholars in the new field of Paleolithic Recycling and establish, for the first time, coherent lines of inquiry, data analyses and interpretation of recycling behavior in prehistory.
In addition to that, we would like to explore the relevance of modern, pre-industrial, recycling characteristics and discuss the role of recycling behaviors in human perception and practice throughout time, perhaps presenting recycling as a phenomenon that accompanied the human race for hundreds of thousand of years.The workshop will be focused on presenting new data regrding stone recycling and bone reusing from Lower, Middle and upper Paleolithic sites from the old world and the possible significance and meaning of Paleolithic recycling. The publication resulting from the workshop is intended to demonstrate the scale, intensity and characteristics of Paleolithic recycling; provide a methodology for studying evidence for recycling and reusing activities and discuss the adaptive role of recycling and reusing in Paleolithic times. The workshop will include a maximum number of 25 presentaions and the proceedings will be published in Quaternary International.