Ponce, Tilsa, Harvard U., Cambridge, MA - To aid research on ''Potato Kings:' Indigenous Elites Challenging Social and Spatial Mobility in the Andes,' supervised by Dr. Gary Urton
Preliminary abstract: My dissertation project examines how 'potato kings,' an indigenous rural bourgeoisie who emerged with a potato boom in the 1950s in the Peruvian central highlands, challenge class, racial, and spatial boundaries. The mobility of this emergent elite is disruptive and traditional mestizo elites have found in the label 'potato kings' a way to 'root' them back in their Indian and peasant origins in the highlands. Through intense ethnographic engagement with two generations of 'potato king' families, wageworkers, and traditional mestizo elites, as well as archival research, my project challenges a 'romanticization' of the rural world and its traditional associations with marginality and poverty. By weaving together political economic studies of the peasantry with critical studies of race and space, my project will analyze different dimensions of mobility in the making of this class of 'potato kings,' in order to explain how struggles of class formation are predicated upon complex politics of racial and spatial belonging.
Freiburger, Nathaniel, U. of California, Davis, CA - To aid research on 'Cultures of Engineering & the Engineering of Politics:The Making of Lithium as an Object of Techno-scientific Knowledge & Politics in Bolivia,' supervised by Dr. Marisol de la Cadena
NATHANIEL FREIBURGER, then a student at University of California, Davis, California, was awarded funding in April 2011 to aid research on 'Cultures of Engineering and the Engineering of Politics: The Making of Lithium as an Object of Techno-Scientific Knowledge and Politics in Bolivia,' supervised by Dr. Marisol de la Cadena. The research consisted of fieldwork directed towards investigating the relationship between lithium production in Uyuni, Bolivia, and the politics of 'plurinationalism' within the allegedly post-neoliberal and post-socialist state of Bolivia. Initial research questions concerned two objects, lithium and the plurinational state, and their respective projects aimed at developing them. The fieldwork aimed at following how the entanglements of practices of various agents involved in these 'projects' produce spatial effects, through the materiality of infrastructural development inside and outside the department of Potosí, and how those effects intersect with controversies surrounding the 'plurinational' state. This question guided data collection in the region of Uyuni, which contains the 12,000km-sq Salar de Uyuni --the reservoir of over fifty percent of the world's usable lithium.
Grimson, Dr. Alejandro, Instituto de Desarrollo Economico y Social, Buenos Aires, Argentina - To aid research and writing on 'An Historical Ethnography of Nationality on the Argentine-Brazilian Border' - Richard Carley Hunt Fellowship
DR. ALEJANDRO GRIMSON, of the Instituto de Desarrollo Económico y Social in Buenos Aires, Argentina, received a Richard Carley Hunt Postdoctoral Fellowship in December 2002 to aid research and writing on the historical ethnography of nationality on the Argentine-Brazilian border. In a book exploring the sociogenesis of this border and of national identification in the areas of Paso de los Libres and Uruguayana, Grimson looked particularly at changes in the national identifications of border populations and what those changes meant. By means of historical ethnography, he reconstructed the different points of view on the nation and the frontier that border actors had held at different times. He also analyzed how, in the contemporary sociocultural context, the border was produced, re-created, and reproduced daily by the various social agents who interacted there: small-time smugglers, business organizations, and local, regional, and national government officials. The focal point of the study was transborder practices and the relationships that linked persons or groups located on either side of the border, including commercial relations, transborder marriages, and political networks. An analysis of these links yielded an understanding of the subtle processes by which identity distinctions were produced.
Barbato Bevilaqua, Dr. Cimea, Federal U. of Parana, Curitiba, Brazil - To aid 'IX Anthropology Conference of the Mercosul - Cultures, Encounters and Inequalities,' 2011, Federal U. of Parana
Preliminary abstract: The Anthropology Conference of the Mercosul (RAM) is an international biannual congress that joins together anthropologists working in South American countries to debate the perspectives, problems, and challenges of Anthropology common to these countries. One of its main goals is working for the consolidation of a transnational network of anthropologists, which is still in phase of structuring in the Mercosul region. This network aims to stimulate the interchange between anthropologists, to produce a better understanding of the similarities and differences in the anthropological practice as well as in the social problematic that are the subject of the discipline in this portion of the South American continent.
The theme of the IX RAM, 'Cultures, Encounters and Inequalities', highlights the contemporary social contexts of plurality, transnationality, frontiers, and identitary processes, in their germinating capacity and in their potential of conflict , which have become, in the last years, some of the central subjects of the anthropological thought.
The format of the conference will consist in round tables and work groups with multinational coordination, in making available a space for discussion and interchange among the several anthropology associations of the participant countries, in special conferences, and in several socio-cultural activities.
Schiller, Naomi Ann, New York U., New York, NY - To aid research on 'Making Media, Making Producers: Community Media and the Production of Collective Subjectivity in Caracas, Venezuela,' supervised by Dr. Thomas Abercrombie
NAOMI SCHILLER, then a student at New York University, New York, New York, was awarded funding in April 2006 to aid research on 'Making Media, Making Producers: Community Media and the Production of Collective Subjectivity in Caracas, Venezuela,' supervised by Dr. Thomas Abercrombie. This research examined efforts of 'community' media producers in Caracas, Venezuela, to transform the relationship of the marginalized poor with the state and respond to the Chavez government's political and financial support for their grassroots media projects. Research was conducted among producers from one prominent community television station and three community radio stations based in barrios (poor neighborhoods) of Caracas. The findings draw on participant observation at community- and state-run media organizations and interviews with media producers and government officials. Research argues that participation of barrio-based media producers in local neighborhood projects and in state-run media productions changed the way that producers from poor neighborhoods understood themselves and the state. Grassroots media producers skillfully negotiated the recent increase in the symbolic and political value of their media productions. This project reveals how community media leaders depended on normative theoretical notions about the boundary between state and society to leverage power by asserting themselves as a non-state authentic popular voice, while in their daily practice they regularly questioned, traversed, and challenged the boundary between state and society. This research contributes to an understanding of the intersection of social movement building, activist use of media, subjectivity, and processes of everyday state formation.
Jarrin, Alvaro Esteban, Duke U., Durham, NC - To aid research on ''The Right to Beauty': Cosmetic Citizenship and Medical Modernity in Brazil,' supervised by Dr. Anne Allison
ALVARA ESTEBAN JARRIN, then a student at Duke University, Durham, North Carolina, received funding in April 2006 to aid research on 'The Right to Beauty: Cosmetic Citizenship and Medical Modernity in Brazil,' supervised by Dr. Anne Allison. This research project examines the construction of beauty in Brazil as a product of the complex race, class and gender inequalities that the country has faced in the past and still faces today. Beauty is a body marker believed to have the power to both stabilize racial and class differences (by making that difference visible to the naked eye) and to make social mobility possible (by providing economic and social opportunities to those who 'achieve' beauty through various means -- particularly plastic surgery). The grantee contrasts the distinct ways in which the body is understood in different social classes, and compare the motives for seeking out plastic surgery among patients in private clinics and patients in public hospitals. The medical world itself has very different approaches to patients in the private and the public health sectors, since the latter is considered the perfect setting for residents to practice and to develop new surgical techniques. The research argues that risk involved in these surgeries is continuously downplayed by medical discourse and by the media, which instead glorifies the transformations achieved through surgery as narratives of social uplift.
Borea Labarthe, Giuliana, New York U., New York, NY - To aid research on 'Recasting the Contemporary: A New Art Scene for the New Lima,' supervised by Dr. Fred Myers
GIULIANA BOREA LABARTHE, then a student at New York University, New York, New York, received funding in April 2013 to aid research on 'Recasting the Contemporary: A New Art Scene for the New Lima,' supervised by Dr. Fred Myers. This project examined the emergence of a vibrant art scene for contemporary art in Lima over the last fifteen years. Ethnographic research was conducted in Lima and in art venues in Miami and Buenos Aires. Through twelve months of archival analysis, participant observation, interviews, and anthropological network analysis, the research explored how Peruvian artists, curators, collectors, art dealers, museums, and other international stakeholders make, manage, and imagine Lima's art scene and highlighted their multi-scale strategies to articulate a previously 'peripheral' art world. The study argues that Lima's new art scene is closely connected to efforts of elites and urban planners to relocate Lima as a global city by changing its long lasting white colonial image to a contemporary one. But to bring the 'contemporary' has implied discussion on the role of an indigenous population that has shaped Lima and demands recognition at all levels. It examined how the growth of a neoliberal economy has brought into play different elite groups and transnational agents that compete in art management while confrontations resonate in Latin American art networks. The study contributes to scholarship on politics and circulation of art and culture, and on the making of creative cities in the global world.
Tarducci, Dr. Monica Lucia del Valle, U. of Buenos Aires, Buenos Aires, Argentina - To aid 'I Coloquio Latinoamericano de Antropología Feminista,' 2013, U. of Buenos Aires, in collaboration with Dr. Deborah Edith Daich
'First Latin American Colloquium of Feminist Anthropologist (I CLAF)
August 22-23, 2013. U. Buenos Aires, Buenos Aires, Argentina
Organizers: Dr. Mónica Tarducci (U. Buenos Aires), Dr. Deborah Daich (CONICET), and Victoria Keller
The First Latin American Colloquium of Feminist Anthropologists (I CLAF) brought together Latin American scholars to discuss and debate the challenges of academic production in this global world of changing political, cultural and economical contexts. Goals of the conference included bringing different research in dialogue with one another, reporting on the current progress and challenges of the discipline within the academic field in various countries, and debating the current contributions and tensions between feminist anthropology and anthropology, other social sciences, and the Latin American feminist movement. The colloquium was organized around four themes: 'Feminist Anthropology in a Global Context', 'Current Latin American Feminist Anthropology: What Happens in our Countries?', 'Feminist Anthropology, Women's Movement and Feminist Movement: Frictions and Articulations', and 'Feminist Anthropology and Public Policy: Contributions and Contradictions'. The panels were organized such that each established a dialogue between the panel to follow and the one that preceded it, foregrounding the complex articulations between feminist anthropology, women's and feminist movements, and the design and implementation of public policies in global contexts. One of the meeting's outcomes was a feminist anthropology network, created to further scholarly exchange between participants as well as promote opportunities for collaborative research.
Londono-Sulkin, Dr. Carlos D., U. of Regina, Regina, Canada - To aid research and writing on 'Moral Selfhood and the Achievement of Social Life among Muinane People, Colombia' - Richard Carley Hunt Fellowship
DR. CARLOS D. LONDONO-SULKIN, University of Regina, Regina, Saskatchewan, Canada, was awarded a Richard Carley Hunt Fellowship in January 2005 to fund the production of a monograph describing the ongoing achievement of social life of Muinane and other People of the Center (Colombian Amazon), and how this life was shaped by their morally evaluative understandings of themselves and of their interactions. The monograph portrays their social organization and cosmology, how individuals talked about these matters, and particularly how they articulated their decisions and moral evaluations of their own and others' subjectivities and actions, often in the very terms with which they talked about mythical origins, clans and lineages, and interspecies relations. The monograph emphasizes the point that selfhood and social life are products of individuals' interactions, and hence insists on describing particular instances of dialogue and other symbolic deployments. It also discusses the matter of key debates in current Amazonianist scholarship, concerning cosmological perspectivism and the place of alterity in Amazonian sociality. The monograph features chapters on moral selfhood; perspectivism, the human and the inhuman; key person-constituting substances such as tobacco, coca, manioc, cool herbs and hot chilies; virtue and social organization; knowledge and agency; and quotidian and occasional predatory transformations.
Londono Sulkin, Carlos David. 2010. People of No Substance: Imposture and the Contingency of Morality in the Colombian Amazon. In Ordinary Ethics: Anthropology, Language and Action. Michael Lambek ed. New York: Fordham University Press. 273-291.
Londono Sulkin, Carlos D. 2008. Instrumental Speeches, Morality, and Masculine Agency among Muinane People (Colombian Amazon). Tipiti, The Journal of the Society of the Anthropology of Lowland South America 1-2(4):199-222