Category Archives: Anthropology

“The many faces of research”

I just realized I never re-posted my October 2010 article summarizing James Spradley’s incredibly cool way of defining different types of research — by the role of the participant vis a vis the researcher. Here’s the text: Anyone who has ever commissioned, … Continue reading

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“God Is Not Dead”

A church in my neighborhood put a flyer in my mailbox inviting me to a screening of “God Is Not Dead.” I decided to go and see it and to meet the people at the church. The film was interesting, … Continue reading

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Pluritarian Pluriversalism

To someone born into an autistic universe controlled by a single set of strictly logical natural laws, the experience of empathy and the subsequent revelation of an empathic pluriverse redefines the meaning of miracle, and of transcendence, and of religion. … Continue reading

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Anthropology of anthropologies

To understand another person try understanding how he understands other people. Who are other people to him? We are not only who others think we are; perhaps even more we are who we think others are.

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Lost in the concrete, lost in the abstract

Watching an occurrence is one kind of observation. Seeing a pattern is another. However, it is rare to find either observation in anything approaching pure form. When we observe an occurrence, often what we are most witnessing is the repetition of … Continue reading

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Ingold on animism

From Tim Ingold’s Being Alive: In one of the most original and provocative discussions of materiality to have appeared in recent years, Peter Pels characterises the logic of this argument as animist: ‘a way of saying that things are alive … Continue reading

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Practical philosophical reductionism

Less than a month ago I observed I’d collected three anti-method books in my library: After Method, Beyond Method, Against Method, and noted the absence of Before Method, Within Method, For Method. I forgot that I also own For and … Continue reading

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