Author: Ryan

Anthropology, Interrupted: Thank you, Vine Deloria

Anthropology, Interrupted: Thank you, Vine Deloria

I was first introduced to anthropology at community college. It was…eye opening. Anthropology challenged the insufficient, limited political and historical education I’d received up through high school. It mattered, and it changed how I looked at the world around me. But there were problems. Blind spots. I learned a certain version of anthropological history and theory. My introduction to the field was what I would call “Boasian Triumphalism,” which effectively depicted anthropology as a heroic discipline that corrected the wrongs {+}

All the value that washes into the sea

All the value that washes into the sea

In August of this year, the Washington Post published an article by John Tibbets and Chris Mooney that discusses sea level rise and eroding home values. The piece opens with the case of Elizabeth Boineau, who once hoped to sell her home in coastal South Carolina for one million dollars. But because of climate change–and subsequent rising seas–the value of her home dropped so dramatically (she reduced the price eleven times), she has finally decided to just tear it down. {+}

Repeat photography & coastal change: From notes and ideas to research method

Repeat photography & coastal change: From notes and ideas to research method

You never know when or how new research will begin. Let alone how you’re going to do it. That’s why it’s always good to take notes…and photographs. In March 2012, when I was in the middle of my doctoral work in Cabo Pulmo, I just happened to map the coastal profile of a nearby beach (known as “Los Frailes”). It’s a long, sandy stretch of beach that curves around a small bay. I walked along the edge of the waterline {+}

Open Access, Apathy & Cowardice in academic publishing: An interview w/ Taylor R. Genovese

Open Access, Apathy & Cowardice in academic publishing: An interview w/ Taylor R. Genovese

In the previous iteration of this site, I talked a lot about Open Access. The trend continues. For some background, check out this 2009 interview with Colleen Morgan, this 2011 interview with Jason Baird Jackson, this 2012 interview with Tom Boellstorff, and this 2012 interview with Keith Hart. And here’s a paper about “Publishing without Perishing” that was presented (thanks Colleen Morgan for reading it!) at the annual AAA meetings in 2012. Also check out this post about not signing {+}

About those Ancestry dot com commercials

About those Ancestry dot com commercials

In the fall 2017 quarter I kicked off my intro to cultural anthropology course with one of those Ancestry dot com videos. These are all over the place, and many of them carry the same basic theme. They all purport to tell people about their ‘family’ or ‘roots’ or ‘heritage.’ That’s fine, except for some of the troubling, misguided messages they send to the public. The video I showed in class is really short (see above). It’s about a guy {+}