Up the Anthropologist – Anthropology Day, Jukebox, Migration & Breakfast

Photo by Mike Saechang (flickr, CC BY-SA 2.0)

Hello everyone – it’s yet another glorious Allegra week! Fine, admittedly the weather in some parts of the world (aka where this post is being written) does not exactly lend itself to such joyous exclamations.

It feels also a bit difficult to remain cheerful with all the awfulness that is going on in the world, embodied to us in Europe particularly via the ‘migration crises’ – as well the reasons that push people in such hordes to leave their homes as increasingly the appalling responses to this situation that our governments fall guilty of.

And let’s not even get started with what is going on with regards to growing censorship of scholars…

All that said, here at ‘Allegra land’ horizons are bright – creative spirits remain in very good shape, and our bizarre ‘magic intellectual carpet ride’ feels as rewarding as ever. And once again we have a stellar line-up of posts to demonstrate as much!

We begin with a theme that might put a damper on this enthusiastic mood, namely via a review of Ruben Andersson’s recent book ‘Illegality, Inc.: Clandestine Migration and the Business of Bordering Europe’  by Stefan Salomon.

Ruben’s work is of course familiar to Allegra from way before, for example via his earlier Allegra post ‘Fear by Numbers’, which addressed the growing European ‘illegality industry’. We saw yet another glimpse into his work via the summary on Knots – part 2 from last October as he gave a talk in Helsinki.

Ruben is an active commentator of the migration situation more generally. For all these reasons combined we insist, despite of the darkness of his  topic, on viewing the instance of this review also in positive light.

It’s yet another opportunity to celebrate the kind of possibilities for rigorous, cutting-edge anthropological work that addresses a compelling current topic and also reaches broader audiences that anthropology is uniquely positioned to offer as a discipline!

On Wednesday we continue with another ‘Allie’, namely Samuli Schielke, whose work has likewise been featured in Allegra numerous times, not least via his post ‘In Defence of our Universal Double Standards’ which was one of our most read posts for 2016.

This week we are very pleased to share a recent talk by him via our Jukebox – one of the features of Allegra that remains a delight to us & we hope to develop further in the not-too-distant future! The talk is titled ‘Dreaming of the Inevitable: How Money, Morals and Destiny Come Together When Young Egyptians Search for Love and Marriage,’ and it was a public lecture that he held at Boston University on 8 February 2016.

The Anthropologist_PosterOn Thursday it is – ta-daa – World Anthropology Day! We’re all SO excited!! (Seriously, we are.) To celebrate we want to join in virtually in a screening of a very special documentary, namely THE ANTHROPOLOGIST directed by Seth Kramer, Daniel A. Miller, and Jeremy Newberger.

The documentary tells the parallel stories of two women: Margaret Mead and Susie Crate, interestingly via the perspective of their daughters. The documentary will be simultaneously screened by twenty-five universities and theaters across the globe, and we are thrilled to join in by sharing a bit more insight into the film itself.

And while we’re on the subject, might we remind everyone once again of our popular writing contest with SAPIENS, in which we coincidentally look for the very next Margaret Mead! Do send us your stuff!

Finally, on Friday we round things up with a fieldwork glimpse that alternates in between AVMoFA, a field note and an essay. In some other context such ‘flippancy’ might be considered a problem – but of course not with us! More concretely we’ll have a look of the ‘other’ end of the global humanitarian business, the one that Ruben Andersson’s book addresses too broadly considered, as we sit down for ‘Breakfast in Aidland’ by Astrid Jamar.

Just what does it include – and who will be sitting at the table with us? We’ll tell all on Friday! Thus warm welcome aboard once again! We hope that you enjoy the ride, we sure do!


P.S.: Sometimes also we forget what fabulous content our beloved website has accumulated over the 2.5+ years. Last week a particular ‘Jewel from Allie’s Archive’ ended up in circulation via a delightful hashtag of #anthrovalentines. Some inevitable twitter banter followed, along with some rather expected awkward flirting across the anthropological twitter-sphere (ahem, Wenner-Gren). The best part: we rediscovered this little Love Pup, shared with care and affection by Aymon Kreil. WUF – AnthroValentines!


Featured image by Mike Saechang (flickr, CC BY-SA 2.0)

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