Welcome to anthro{dendum}!

Welcome to anthro{dendum}!

Pineapple
Photo by David Monniaux, via Wikimedia Commons

The holo (aka “Taiwanese” or “Southern Min”) pronunciation of the word “pineapple” sounds similar to the characters 旺來 which announce the arrival of good fortune. For this reason, stores in Taiwan will hang red paper pineapples (red also being associated with good fortune) to celebrate a grand opening or other auspicious occasion. And so, sitting here in Taiwan as we put the final touches on our new site which will go live on November 28th, I thought some red pineapples would be an appropriate image for our first post. And, indeed, one of the major changes with the new site is the more central role that images will play on the site. Each post will now have a features image alongside it on the front page of the site, and we hope to encourage our bloggers and guest bloggers to use images more liberally in their posts.

The need for a new site was necessitated by the name change. Although it would have been technically possible to keep all the old content under a new URL, doing so in a clean way that didn’t break any internal or external links to over a decade of content would not have been easy. And over that decade there have been a lot of changes in the internet and the WordPress software which hosts our site. Starting over meant that we didn’t have to worry about backwards compatibility as we implemented some new features on the site. One major change over the years has been the number of visitors who use mobile devices. Mobile devices now account for about half of all our traffic, and so it made sense to redesign the site with mobile devices in mind from the very beginning.

Why the name change? There are three posts on the old site explaining that:

Although we know that the name change had its detractors, the decision was largely welcomed with cries of “It’s about time!” and so we apologize that it took nearly another year to launch the new site. We took our time because we wanted to do things right. Hopefully our loyal readers will be pleased with the result. Having said that, there are likely to still be problems with the new site, so if you see something, say something: either in the comments below, or via the contact form. Be sure to state what device, browser, and operating system you are using, as that will help us track down the issue.

Those of you who subscribed to the site via RSS or email will want to re-subscribe to the new site. (See the footer for information on how to do so.) And please note our new Facebook page and twitter handle as well!

Finally, a word about the brackets in our new name. When we chose the new name we didn’t know that we would be writing it as “anthro{dendum}” – it is something that emerged as a result of the design process. Since the brackets became a central feature of the new design, we decided to include it in the name as well. While you are free to write “anthrodendum” if you prefer (it is certainly quicker to type), we consider “anthro{dendum}” to be the official name of the site, just like “Yahoo!” considers the exclamation point as part of their name.

P. Kerim Friedman is an associate professor in the Department of Ethnic Relations and Cultures at National Dong Hwa University in Taiwan. His research explores language revitalization efforts among indigenous Taiwanese, looking at the relationship between language ideology, indigeneity, and political economy. An ethnographic filmmaker, he co-produced the Jean Rouch award-winning documentary, ‘Please Don’t Beat Me, Sir!’ about a street theater troupe from one of India’s Denotified and Nomadic Tribes (DNTs).

One Reply to “Welcome to anthro{dendum}!”

  1. Thank you, Kerim, for the enormous undertaking in redesigning and launching the blog. Despite my objections, I was actually quite proud of Savage Minds, but I’m even more proud and thankful to be a part of the anthro{dendum} community.

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