Shankland, Dr. David, Royal Anthropological Institute, London, UK - To aid RAI conference on 'Anthropology and Photography,' 2014, British Museum, London
Preliminary abstract: The aim of this conference is to bring together an international field from all the major branches of anthropology to consider the place, role and future of photography. It is motivated by the following underlying practical consideration. There is a flourishing sub-field of visual anthropology within social-cultural anthropology. Yet, in spite of this, photography has never been made the feature of a major associational congress. All anthropologists who undertake fieldwork, whether social-cultural, archaeological, or biological take photographs, yet they still frequently do not problematize this core part of their methodological practice. It is this contradiction that has led the Royal Anthropological Institute to make photography the theme for the second of its large biannual conferences. Methodologically, we would argue that, in sharing the different way that photography is contextualised across anthropology in the widest sense, it will be possible to encourage the study of photography and its manifold implications to become a mainstream topic, one that in itself can serve to start a wider discussion about the changing relationship between text, image and meaning across the respective anthropological disciplines and thereby help to bridge disparate practices through contributing toward a sustained, shared common anthropological discourse.
Chand, Vineeta, U. of California, Davis, CA - To aid research on 'Indian English Ownership, Status and Variation,' supervised by Dr. Janet Shibamoto Smith
VINEETA CHAND, then a student at University of California, Davis, California, received funding in October 2007 to aid research on 'Indian English Ownership, Status and Variation,' supervised by Dr. Janet Shibamoto Smith. This research addressed the Indian English (IE) socio-cultural linguistic setting, examining the relationship between structural variation, identity, attitudes and personal history for New Delhi English bilinguals. Informed by the fields of sociolinguistics, anthropology, and South Asian studies, the research uses quantitative and qualitative analytic linguistic methodologies, in conjunction with close ethnographic observation, to address socio-cultural questions. Modern alternative multilingual settings raise important theoretical questions about applying variationist methods in new contexts, and interrelationships between language change, shifts in linguistic ideologies, and sociolinguistic identity. Drawing on 50-plus hours of informal conversations and ethnographic fieldwork, significant links were uncovered between linguistic practices, ideologies, and evolving historical backdrops, wherein gender, age, ethno-linguistic background, and domestic mobility are each foundational elements of individual urban identity, and collectively are significant for understanding systematic IE language practices. These findings challenge the assumption that oft-considered 'basic' social factors, widely used in variationist studies, are adequate to account for alternative, third-world settings, underscoring the importance of ethnographic and qualitative data for interpreting language practices. This project also examined processes and results of globalization and localization, demonstrating that IE's development as a distinct English dialect is intertwined with the emergence of a locally valuable, urban Indian identity.
To support the development of a doctoral program in anthropology at Universite d'Etat d' Haiti, Port-Au-Prince, Haiti - Institutional Development Grant
Preliminary abstract: Through primary partnerships with the University of Kansas (KU) and Teachers College, Columbia University (TC), the State University of Haiti (UEH) will implement an ethos of productivity to establish a fully functioning doctoral program that will facilitate student and faculty training as well as research. This will be accomplished by a) increasing the number of Ph.D.
Gal, Dr. Susan, U. of Chicago, Chicago, IL - To aid workshop on linguistic anthropology research, 2001, Chicago, in collaboration with Dr. Bruce Mannheim
'Linguistic Anthropology Research Consortium,' 2001-2003, Chicago, Illinois -- Organizers: Susan Gal (University of Chicago) and Bruce Manheim (University of Michigan). The Linguistic Anthropology Research Consortium was organized to promote intellectual synergy among linguistic anthropologists in the Great Lakes region, enhance the research of its members, and jointly develop areas of theoretical advance within linguistic anthropology. The group met nine times in three years. Each meeting was devoted to the work in progress of two members, followed by broader theoretical debate. Papers were distributed ahead of time. A sense of joint effort emerged, along with a convergence of theoretical frameworks for investigating the ways in which language and text are commodified, how discursive practices circulate in global flows, and how linguistic practices are social differentiated. In addition to the single-authored publications developed through this series of meetings, a 'Midwest nexus' of linguistic anthropology emerged. Consortium members have begun to seek further funding to institutionalize their collaboration in the form of yearly conferences and websites.
Hsiao, Chi-hua, U. of California, Los Angeles, CA - To aid research on 'Subtitle Groups as Cultural Translators in China,' supervised by Dr. Elinor Ochs
CHI-HUA HSIAO, then a student at University of California, Los Angeles, California, received funding in October 2011 to aid research on 'Subtitle Groups as Cultural Translators in China,' supervised by Dr. Elinor Ochs. This dissertation project examines the phenomenon of cultural translation in the context of an underground network of Internet-based amateur translators in China. Informal volunteer subtitle groups emerged in the mid-1990s and began catering to the younger generation's thirst for U.S. media popular culture. These translators add Chinese-language subtitles to programs, post the shows online for free downloads, and provide a network for online interactions. The subtitling activity reflects the younger Chinese generation's articulation of new morality discourses and their challenges to the state-party monopoly of information. The younger generation attempts to establish its own moral justifications as a form of resistance to the regime surveillance and in adherence to individual life-enriching practices. This study explores how Chinese volunteer subtitlers construct representations of U.S. television programs and films and how these representations relate to the globalization of sociocultural ideologies. It offers insights into how the collaborative volunteer efforts of subtitle groups acting as cultural brokers represent a new paradigm of morality among Chinese youth and young adults of the virtual community and how such initiatives influence the younger generation's perceptions of foreign popular culture as part of the larger globalized flow of information.
Kulick, Dr. Don, New York U., New York, NY - To aid research on 'The Dying Language that Didn't Die: 20 Years Later in Gapun, PNG'
DR. DON KULICK, New York University, New York, New York, received funding in October 2007 to aid research on 'The Dying Language that Didn't Die: 20 Years Later in Gapun, PNG'. Research followed up original research conducted in the late 1980s studying a small Papua New Guinean village called Gapun and of the isolate vernacular language, Taiap, that is spoken only there. Eight months of fieldwork in 2009 revealed that Taiap is still spoken in Gapun, but it is dying. The total population of fluent and semi-fluent speakers is about 60. Villagers in their early 20s and younger continue to understand the language, and can even produce it when asked to by a visiting anthropologist. But they do not use Taiap in any context. Fieldwork has resulted in enough material to analyze the dynamics of the language death in the village, and to write a dictionary and grammar of Taiap. Research also focused on how the young people who can speak some Taiap produce versions of the vernacular that are regularized, simplified, and etiolated. This material will allow analysis that charts the grammatical disintegration of a Papuan language. A further study of how women who were children in the 1980s socialize their children to use language will be able to address the question of whether or not language socialization patterns endure across generations.
Minks, Amanda, Columbia U., New York, NY - To aid research on 'Expressive Practices and Identity Formation among Miskitu Children,' supervised by Dr. Aaron A. Fox
AMANDA MINKS, while a student at Columbia University, New York, New York, received funding in June 2002 to aid research on 'Expressive Practices and Identity Formation among Miskitu Children,' supervised by Dr. Aaron A. Fox. In the past thirty years, Miskitu Indians have migrated in increasing numbers from mainland Nicaragua to Com Island, off the Caribbean coast. This migration has transformed the social and political landscape of the island, which, since the nineteenth century, has been populated primarily by English-speaking Creole people. Also transformed are the expressive and socializing practices of Miskitu islanders. The aim of the research supported by Wenner-Gren was to document the repertoires of Miskitu children's expressive practices across a range of contexts, providing a lens on shifting processes of socialization among peers and across generations. The term expressive practices encompasses a range of interrelated communicative activities (musical, linguistic, and kinetic) approached from the perspectives of style, performance, and poetics. The imagination is key not only in terms of children's play activities, but also in terms of developing social imaginaries that construct ties among people across time and space. Children were observed in formal socializing contexts, such as the school and the church, as well as the informal contexts of home and outdoor play spaces. Audio recordings of children's interaction were transcribed in collaboration with Miskitu consultants, and interviews were conducted with adults dealing with topics such as migration histories, gender roles, socialization practices, religion, and labor. This research attempts to make connections between the large-scale political and economic forces that are radically changing Com Island's social structure, and the small-scale interactions in which children are socialized - and socialize one another - in a multilingual, culturally diverse environment.
Silverman, Dr. Sydel, Irvington, NY - to aid preparation of personal research and professional materials for archival deposit with the National Anthropological Archives, Smithsonian Institution, Suitland, Maryland
Conant, Veronika A., New York, NY - To aid preparation of the personal research materials of Dr. Francis P. Conant for archival deposit with the National Anthropological Archives and the Human Studies Film Archives - Historical Archives Program
To support development of a joint doctoral program in anthropology at University of Latvia, Riga Stradins University (Latvia), University of Tallinn (Estonia) and Vytautus Magnus University (Lithuania) - Institutional Development Grant
Preliminary abstract: The aim of the Institutional Development Project is to support development of a regional doctoral program in social and cultural anthropology in the Baltic states of Estonia, Latvia, and Lithuania. The project will bring together four universities, three of which have already entered into a collaborative framework for the implementation of tertiary level education through establishment of the Baltic Graduate School in 2008. The project will support the establishment of a separate doctoral program in anthropology within the framework of the Baltic Graduate School and thus will also contribute to strengthening the discipline of anthropology in the Baltics. More specifically, the project will stupport staff training through a partnership arrangement with the University of Manchester, aid student mobility (including for research training purposes), organization of an international lecture series and thematic and methodological seminars and summer schools, as well as through building up the textual and technical resource base in anthropology in the Baltics. This will strengthen the steps already taken in the region to make anthropology a valued discipline, academically and publicly, within this area poised for potential growth.