McDonald, Charles Alan, New School for Social Research, New York, NY - To aid research on 'Jewish Relations: Conversion, Inheritance, and the 'Return to Sepharad' in Spain,' supervised by Dr. Ann L. Stoler
Preliminary abstract: In 1492, nearly a millennium of Jewish civilization on the Iberian Peninsula was extinguished when Spain decreed that all unconverted Jews would be expelled from the land known in Hebrew as Sepharad. Five centuries later, immigrants, converts, and the state are dramatically reconfiguring the place of Jews and Judaism in Spain. Although Jewish conversion, cultural heritage, and immigration are commonly taken to be multiple manifestations of a single
phenomenon--the 'return to Sepharad'--my research investigates the divergent actors and objectives that animate these projects to understand how the enactment of such 'returns'--whether of contemporary neighborhoods to medieval landscapes, of Spaniards to Judaism, or of Sephardic Jews to Spain--reconfigure debates about the nature of Jewish personhood, history, and the pressing contemporary question of coexistence. My study is guided by questions in three domains where claims to the Jewish past and present are made: (1) Conversion: How and when is an individual's Jewishness recognized as a historical fact or a future possibility? (2) Inheritance: What concepts and materials make it possible to claim people, places, and objects as Jewish inheritance? (3) Coexistence: How do Jews figure in debates about the potential for the celebrated medieval convivencia of Jews, Christians, and Muslims to serve as a template for contemporary multicultural inclusion? Unlike scholarship that focuses on the exclusion of Europe's religious minorities, my project instead examines the inclusion--however uneven and contradictory--of Jewish people and history in Spain in an
effort to shed new light on the vexed conditions of European multiculturalism.
Diaz de Rada, Dr. Angel, U. Nacional de Educacion a Distancia, Madrid, Spain - To aid research on 'The Construction of Belonging Expressive Practice and Identity Appropriations Among 'Saami' and 'Norwegians' in Kautokeino'
DR. ANGEL DIAZ DE RADA, of the Universidad Nacional de Educación a Distancia in Madrid, Spain, received funding in November 2003 to aid research on expressive practices and identity appropriations among Saami and Norwegians in Kautokeino, Norway. Ethnopolitical rhetoric-whether state rhetoric or not-is based on the idea of a collective subject and on the notion of belonging. The empirical evidence produced in this investigation shows that the fabrication of such images of belonging does not correspond to the concrete construction of local belonging. This means that a state's territory is not a territory in which real linking takes place; neither is the ethnos that is created using peripheral, minority, or indigenous assumptions. The local continuity of linking is much more intense than that which supralocal institutions reflect, at the level of the Norwegian state as well as the level of the Saami Parliament's ethnopolitics. In both cases, the formulation of categories of social belonging incorporates rhetoric that is too vague in the eyes of the concrete local subjects. Nevertheless, this research revealed the nuances that characterize a state ethnopolitical rhetoric of belonging, as opposed to one produced by institutions that do not aspire to form a state. The basic analytical strategy consisted of pursuing the relationships and successive translations of continuity and belonging as they were formulated and put into practice in local life and in the corresponding political and administrative locations that rose above this local life to represent it.
Díaz de Rada, Ángel. 2004. El Sujeto en la Corriente. Reflexiones Sobre el Sujeto Social en Condiciones de Globalización. In El Nuevo Orden de Caos: Consecuencias Socioculturales de la 75 Globalización. Luis Díaz G. Viana, ed. Consejo Superior de investigaciones Científicas: Madrid.
Diaz de Rada, Angel. 2007. School Bureaucracy, Ethnography and Culture: Conceptual Obstacles to Doing Ethnography in Schools. Social Anthropology 15(2): 205-222
Diaz de Rada, Angel. 2007. Valer y Valor. Una Exhumacion de la Teoría del Valor para Reflexionar sobre la Desigualdad y Diferencia en Relación con la Escuela. Revista de Anthropología Social (16): 117-158
Diaz de Rada, Angel. 2010. Bagatelas de la Moralidad Ordinaria: Los Anclajes Morales de Una Experiencia Etnográfica. In Dilemas Eticos en Anthropología: Las Entretelas del Trabajo de Campo Etnográfico. Margarita del Olmo, ed. Editorial Trotta: Madrid, Spain.
Funahashi, Daena Aki, Cornell U., Ithaca, NY - To aid research on 'Social Order and its Borders: Exploring Depression in Finland,' supervised by Dr. Dominic C. Boyer
DAENA A. FUNAHASHI, then a student at Cornell University, Ithaca, New York, was awarded a grant in April 2006 to aid research on 'Social Order and its Borders: Exploring Depression in Finland,' supervised by Dr. Dominic C. Boyer. This study investigates the phenomenon of work-related depression and workplace burnout in Finland by looking at how this phenomenon is talked about, categorized, and institutionalized within three spheres: patients, the workplace, and treatment centers. This research examined the ways in which people from these three spheres interpreted depression and burnout. Depression meant different things to patients, employers, and clinicians. For some patients who worked in competitive offices it was a stigma-ridden category, and a risk to their professional life. For employers, it posed as an economic burden in terms of lost productivity and sick-leave. For those in healthcare, depressed patients were welcome clients for their services. The two categories of depression and burnout were closely related, depending on how the patient or company wanted to negotiate self-image and finances: depression was often diagnosed as burnout (a condition requiring shorter amounts of sick-leave), and burnout as depression. Three main trends in the explanation for the rise in burnout cases emerged: 1) an increasing demand for efficiency in the workplace; 2) anxiety over increasing opacity in the welfare system; and 3) increasing clash between the traditional valuation of hard work for its own sake and the market drive to maximize profit.
Funahashi, Daena Aki. 2013. Wrapped in Plastic: Transformation and Alienation in the New Finnish Economy. Cultural Anthropology 28(1):1-21.
Robbins, Jessica Choate, U. of Michigan, Ann Arbor, MI - To aid research on 'Making and Unnmaking Polish Persons: Aging and Memory in Postsocialist Poland,' supervised by Dr. Gillian Feeley-Harnik
JESSICA C. ROBBINS, then a student at University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, Michigan, received funding in October 2007 to aid research on 'Making and Unnmaking Polish Persons: Aging and Memory in Postsocialist Poland,' supervised by Dr. Gillian Feeley-Harnik. This research investigated how experiences and ideals of aging relate to changing formations of nation and state through the study of contemporary practices of memory in Wroc?aw and Pozna?, Poland. This research sought to understand how older persons become transformed through practices of memory in personal, familial, and national contexts (e.g., telling life histories, creating photo albums and other material evidence, or following public debates on pension reform). To understand how current interpretations and ramifications of the last century's large-scale changes matter in the lives of aging Poles, and how the oldest generations matter to the Polish nation and state, this research consisted of an ethnographic study of aging Poles' gendered practices of reminiscence in a variety of social, political, religious, and economic contexts (e.g.,a church-run rehabilitation hospital, a state-run home for the chronically ill, a day care center for people with Alzheimer's disease, and Universities of the Third Age). This research demonstrated that experiences and ideals of aging are deeply gendered, and that older people's practices of memory are intimately bound up with transformations of persons, collective memory, and nationalisms, and tied to national practices of remembering Poland's past and creating the proper future path of state and nation.
Heatherington, Dr. Tracey Lynne, U. of Wisconsin, Milwaukee, WI - To aid research on 'The Lively Commons: Seed Banking and Adaptation to Climate Change'
Preliminary abstract: This ethnographic project tracks global gene banking initiatives across scales and networks of collaboration, connected through the node of the Svalbard Global Seed Vault. It will follow particular seeds, and the various meanings and values attached to them, through different physical, social, legal and institutional locations and mediations, mapping out the variety of partnerships and perspectives that materialize along the way. This research explores the social implications of initiatives involved with the Global Seed Vault, including efforts to assemble a comprehensive, global network of seed banks. Do they represent appropriate frameworks to manage a global commons of biodiversity? How can we describe the complex institutional context? What insight do these initiatives give us into evolving mechanisms of governance, and prospects for adaptation to global climate change? How should we evaluate their potential significance in terms of environmental justice? The project brings science studies and political ecology into articulation with the anthropology of transnational organizations and corporate forms engaged with human and food security. This case study evaluates alternative conceptual frameworks for understanding the genetic resources being managed through gene banking, paying particular attention to evolving models of environmental governance and changing relationships amid public, private and civil society sectors.
Smith, Alexander T.T., U. of Edinburgh, Edinburgh, United Kingdom - To aid research on 'Apprehending the (Scottish) State: Devolution, Nationalism and the Politics of Rural Development,' supervised by Dr. Anthony P. Cohen
ALEXANDER T. T. SMITH, while a student at the University of Edinburgh in Edinburgh, Scotland, received funding in May 2001 to aid research on devolution, nationalism, and the politics of rural development in Scotland, under the supervision of Dr. Anthony P. Cohen. Contemporary Scotland presents a unique opportunity for anthropologists and other social scientists to explore, in a Western setting, the processes by which a new parliament is created and its effects on other state agencies. Smith investigated the processes by which the authority of the Scottish Parliament was being negotiated and established through a nexus of institutions concerned with 'rural development' in Dumfries and Galloway. On the basis of ethnographic research conducted between the devastating outbreak of foot-and-mouth disease in the region in 2001 and elections to the local council and Scottish Parliament in May 2003, Smith addressed the following questions: How is authority and legitimacy constructed by governing institutions in Scotland? What legitimating role will discourses relating to rural development and the land play in constructing political authority in postdevolution Scotland? And how do these discourses contribute to the formation of national identity?
Smith, Alexander. 2011. Devolution and the Scottish Conservatives: Banal Activism, Electioneering and the Politics of Irrelevance. Manchester University Press: Manchester and New York.
Kartari, Dr. Asker, Kadir Has U., Istanbul, Turkey - To aid InASEA conference on 'Cultures of Crisis: Experiencing and Coping with Upheavals and Disasters in Southeast Europe,' 2014, Istanbul, in collaboration with Dr. Klaus Roth
Preliminary abstract: Both the history of the last two centuries and the present of Southeast Europe are marked by deep transformations and upheavals. The emergence and disappearance of states, ethnic conflicts and wars, the fundamental changes of political systems and social order, deep economic crises as well as natural disasters are only the more visible ones of these upheavals. Experiencing and coping with uncertainties and crises can thus be considered one of the important features of the processes of modernization on the Balkan Peninsula. In many cases the ongoing crisis became a way of life. People react to such upheavals and crises in various ways, with subjugation or adaptation, most often, though, with employing cultural techniques and everyday strategies, with using traditions of submission, appropriation or refusal. The primary goal of the conference will not be to elucidate the natural, political, military or socio-economic causes of societal, social or individual crises. The papers should rather focus, from an ethnological or anthropological perspective, on the reactions of societies, of social groups (such as families) or of individuals to such crises, on their impact on the everyday life of people, on their various strategies of managing and coping with them, on the processes of adaptation and interpretation, and on peoples' concepts and attitudes.
Van Den Bos, Dr. Matthijs, Birkbeck College, U. of London, London, UK - To aid research on 'European Shi'ism: Peripheral Networks and Religious Renewal'
DR. MATTHIJS VAN DEN BOS, Birkbeck College, University of London, London, United Kingdom, was awarded funding in May 2007, to aid research on 'European Shi'ism: Peripheral Networks and Religious Renewal.' The research has explored networks and religiosity of Shiites in Europe to answer the question of what comprises European Shiism. It was hypothesised that Shiism in Europe occupies a peripheral position, enhancing autonomous 'European (Shiite) Islam' through context sensitive lay religious exegeses and the adoption of reformist thought that decenters clerical jurisprudence. These issues were investigated through a database of approximately 300 Dutch and British organizations, and key French and German organizations, which listed their board members and ethnic affiliations; approximately thirty interviews with representative Shiites in Britain, the Netherlands and Iran; exploring Shiite publications; and observing Shiite communal life in Britain. Core findings refuted the premises. Many key organizations were related to global Shiite authority; Shiites' formal organizational life in Europe did not cohere cross-ethnically and transnationally, but was nationally and ethnically fragmented. Thus, European Shiism did not constitute a particular, peripheral space. The research identified both indicators of European Shiism, lay readings and decentering jurisprudence, but did not find them to define European Shiism. Ideational lines in major lay organizations derived from clerical statements; a non-jurisprudential focus was experimented with at relatively low levels in an hierarchy of knowledge where provision at Iranian (and Iraqi) seminaries ranked supreme.
van den Bos, Matthijs. 2012. European Shiism? Counterpoints from Shiites' Organization in Britain and the Netherlands. Ethnicities 12(5):556-580.
van den Bos, Matthijs. 2012. 'European Islam' in the Iranian Ettehadiyeh. In Shi'I Islam and Identity: Religion Politics and Change in the Global Muslim Community. L. Ridgeon, ed. Routledge: London.
Leinaweaver, Dr. Jessaca Bennett, Brown U., Providence, RI - To aid research on 'From Peru to Spain: Transnational Adoption and Migration'
DR. JESSACA LEINAWEAVER, Brown University, Providence, Rhode Island, received funding in December 2010, to aid research on 'From Peru to Spain: Transnational Adoption and Migration.' This research, based in Madrid, compared those young Peruvians who were adopted by Spanish parents and are growing up in an increasingly multicultural setting, to those young Peruvians who migrated alongside their Peruvian parents seeking economic opportunities. The grantee conducted extensive interviews and observation among both populations and with professionals and scholars involved in both adoption and migration. The study found that although there are important differences between adoption and migration, there is also great value in comparing them. Migration and adoption overlap in time, often share the same points of origin and arrival, and are driven by some of the same broader forces. Despite the differences in their form of arrival to a Madrid that is suddenly and rapidly becoming racially diverse, young people of Peruvian origin share several experiences in common. The grantee is writing a book based on these findings, tentatively entitled 'Transnational Children: What Adoption and Migration Mean for a Global World,' which unites the objects of study, approaches, and theoretical frames of both kinship and migration literatures.
Leinaweaver, Jessaca B. 2013. Toward an Anthropology of Ingratitude: Notes from Andean Kinship. Comparative Studies in Society and History 55(3):554-578.
Leinaweaver, Jessaca B. 2013. Adoptive Migration: Raising Latinos in Spain. Duke University Press: Durham and London.