MEM Working Group announces upcoming talks by Andrew Lakoff and Julie Livingston

The Moral Economies of Medicine Working Group with support from the UNC Institute for the Arts and Humanities is pleased to announce upcoming talks by Dr. Andrew Lakoff and Dr. Julie Livingston.

Andrew Lakoff: “The Risks of Preparedness: Mutant Bird Flu and the Politics of Global Public Health” (March 21, Alumni 308)

Lakoff_March 21 FlierTalk abstract: What kind of problem does an experimental virus pose for the public? The answer depends in part on which public one has in mind. During the controversy that began in late 2011 over the laboratory creation of a mutant strain of H5N1 avian influenza, at least three different publics were conjured. First, there was a vulnerable public, whose health was to be protected against a deadly pandemic through risk mitigation and preparedness measures. Second, there was a threatening public: here the problem was to restrict access to potentially dangerous knowledge about the virus to those who would use it for legitimate scientific purposes. And third, there appeared an ignorant public whose unfounded fears threatened to stifle scientific advance: this public needed to be informed of the benefits of what might at first glance appear to be frightening research. What was at stake in the invocation of these various publics in the mutant bird flu affair? This talk suggests that, rather than a conflict between scientific authorities and a fearful public, or between open inquiry and the demands of security, the controversy should be understood as a conflict among experts over different conceptualizations of an uncertain situation. As the controversy unfolded, a fracture appeared in the existing alliance between life scientists and global public health authorities around the uncertain threat of avian influenza.
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Osteology in the Carolinas

Osteology in the Carolinas


Spring Meeting February 8, 2014
Hyde Hall, UNC Chapel Hill Campus
Conversation 9-10 AM
Presentations 10-12AM; 1:30-4 PM
Open to anyone

A gathering focused on the analysis and interpretation of human skeletal remains from contexts pertinent to bioarchaeology, forensic anthropology, and paleoanthropology.

Grateful thanks are extended for funding for the spring meeting by the Department of Anthropology (UNC & Appalachian State University), Institute for Arts and Humanities, and Research Laboratories of Archaeology.

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Embracing the Zombie Apocalypse with Open Arms: Strategies for Pedagogy and Learning in the 21st Century

The Anthropology Colloquium Series invites you to join us Monday, Feb 3rd at 3:30pm in Wilson Library Pleasants Room (please note the change of location) for a talk by Dr. Jeff Mantz, NSF Cultural Anthropology Program Director.

The title of his talk is, “Embracing the Zombie Apocalypse with Open Arms: Strategies for Pedagogy and Learning in the 21st Century”

Refreshments will be served before the talk at 3:15pm.

Dr. Jeff Mantz is currently the Program Director for Cultural Anthropology at the National Science Foundation. He is also an assistant professor in the Dept. of Sociology and Anthropology at George Mason University. Mantz recently received the GMU Teaching Excellence Award for his large lecture class, “Zombies.” He has researched the political economy of the coltan trade in the Democratic Republic of the Congo and Free Trade policies in the Commonwealth of Dominica, West Indies. His PhD is from the University of Chicago.

Missing ‘Links': Assessing the Aged and Gendered Effects of Land-Use/Land-Cover Changes in a Southern Zambian Frontier

The Anthropology Colloquium Series invites you to join us today at 3:30pm in Alumni 308 for a talk by Allison Harnish, Visiting Assistant Professor, Albion College. The title of her talk is, “Missing ‘Links': Assessing the Aged and Gendered Effects of Land-Use/Land-Cover Changes in a Southern Zambian Frontier”

Refreshments will be served before the talk at 3:15pm.

Dr. Allison (Alli) Harnish is currently a Visiting Assistant Professor at Albion College in Albion, MI. She earned her PhD in Anthropology from the University of Kentucky. Alli’s work focuses on the gendered dimensions of Land-Use/Land-Cover Change (LULCC) among the Gwembe-Tonga of southern Zambia. This research combines a mixed-methods approach combining ethnography with GIS, remote sensing analysis, and household surveys. Her fieldwork has been supported by  the NSF, Fulbright program, and other fellowships.

Exploring shamans and rock art in South Africa

Silvia Tomaskova spent 2010 to 2011 in South African studying prehistoric rock art. (photo courtesy of Silvia Tomaskova)
Silvia Tomášková spent 2010 to 2011 in South Africa studying prehistoric rock art. (photo courtesy of Silvia Tomášková)

UNC anthropologist Silvia Tomášková spent 2010 to 2011 in South Africa studying prehistoric rock art drawings as part of the research for her book, Wayward Shamans: The Prehistory of an Idea. She then returned to Carolina with a fresh perspective on the drawings, eager to share this knowledge with students in a new course involving interactive learning techniques.

She wanted to trace the origins of shamans (sometimes described as proto-priests, religious leaders, artists and healers) from Siberia to South Africa and to examine their gendered interpretations. (They are often depicted as men.) For the last 20 years, scholars had drawn from 19th century ethnographies to propose that the South Africa rock art drawings were done by shamans under ritualistic trance. Tomášková wanted to see the drawings for herself. Continue reading

AnArchaey Notes, Spring 2013 (Vol. 9)

AnArchaey Notes is the Department of Anthropology’s newsletter, in circulation since 1993. Our Spring 2013 edition was graciously compiled by professor Colin Thor West, and features an interview with former chair Paul Leslie, notes from the field, events, information on a new certificate program, on-going faculty and graduate student research, new faculty biographies, and more.

Click here to view AnArchaey Notes, Vol. 9 »

An archive of older copies of AnArchaey notes may be found here.

2013-2014 Anthropology Colloquium Schedule

[Except where noted, all talks will take place from 3:30-5pm in Alumni 308]

September 16: Lauren Fordyce, Visiting Lecturer in Medical Anthropology, UNC-CH: “Accounting for Responsibility: Vital Statistics and Prenatal Care among Haitians in South Florida.”

October 4 at 10am in Hyde Hall Incubator Room: Paul Brodwin, Professor of Anthropology University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee: “The Ethics of Ambivalence: Autobiographical and Ethnographic Accounts of Constraint in Psychiatric Practice”

October 11 in Saunders 220 at 3:15pm: Laura Ogden, Associate Professor of Anthropology and Global & Sociocultural Studies, Florida International University: “Speculative Wonder at the End of the World: Animal Diasporas”

December 2: Joseph Hankins, Assistant Professor of Anthropology at UC-San Diego: TBA

January 13: Allison Harnish, Visiting Assistant Professor, Albion College: TBA

February 3: Large Course Revamp Speaker

March 3: Richard Wilk, Provost Professor of Anthropology at Indiana University-Bloomington: TBA

April 7: Alexandra Slade, Director & President’s Professor, School of Human Evolution and Social Change; Director of Operations, ASU-Mayo Clinic Obesity Solutions, Arizona State University: TBA

April 21: Shannon Lee Dawdy, Associate Professor, University of Chicago: TBA

UNC-CH Anthropology Offers Certificate in Participatory Research

This spring the Administration approved an interdisciplinary Graduate Certificate in Participatory Research to be housed in Anthropology. The certificate will certify completion of training in the theoretical bases, rationale, methodologies, challenges, and motivation for carrying out research in equitable partnership with the community that the research is intended to benefit.

Relevant participatory methods, ethical considerations, and research paradigms come from diverse sources across campus, including professional schools such as Public Health and Social Work and the College of Arts and Sciences, especially its humanities and social science departments – anthropology, geography, history, city and regional planning, and sociology. The Certificate program provides faculty mentorship and guidance to help students develop facility with methods for their respective projects, connects graduate students with each other and with faculty and community experts, and establishes forums for discussing, sharing and refining participatory ethics and methodologies. It also aims to provide opportunities for students in all fields to gain experience by linking them to ongoing projects.

UNC-CH has a strong history of community-engaged participatory research, particularly in Public Health. The Department of Anthropology is pleased to play a role in building this tradition. Anthropology professor Dorothy Holland will serve as the first Director of the Certificate Program.

Learn more about the Graduate Certificate in Participatory Research →

UNC Anthropologist Karla Slocum will lead Institute of African American Research

Karla Slocum

The new director of the Institute of African American Research at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill will be Karla Slocum, Ph.D., an associate professor in anthropology and African and Afro-American studies at the University.

Slocum’s appointment is effective July 1.

Slocum is an anthropologist whose research focuses on globalization, place, rural lifeways, and race and history as they relate to groups within the African diaspora. For the past year, she has been a National Endowment for the Humanities Fellow and Resident Scholar at the School for Advanced Research in Santa Fe, New Mexico. Continue reading

Anthropologist Awarded Guggenheim Fellowship

Patricia McAnanyPatricia McAnany

Anthropologist Patricia McAnany at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill was awarded a Guggenheim Fellowship to support her research.

McAnany is the Kenan Eminent Professor of Anthropology in UNC’s College of Arts and Sciences.

The John Simon Guggenheim Memorial Foundation, based in New York City, appoints fellows based on prior achievement and exceptional promise in research and artistic creation.

McAnany’s proposed book project is “Heritage without Irony: Transcultural Dialogue at a Busy Intersection.” As an archaeologist, she has conducted field research and cultural heritage programs throughout the Maya region, and she co-founded the UNC program, InHerit: Indigenous Heritage Passed to Present. Continue reading