The American Anthropological Association has stirred controversy by removing the word "science" from its long-term mission statement. Peter Peregrine, president of the Society for Anthropological Sciences, and Hugh Gusterson, executive boardmember of the American Antrhopological Association, discuss the decision, which has highlighted divisions between science-oriented anthropologists and those more focused on the humanities.
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Rationally Speaking | Official Podcast of New York City Skeptics
Release date: January 16, 2011
In a recent article in the New York Times (13 Dec 2010 http://nyti.ms/gTiRK6), Nicholas Wade reported that the American Anthropological Association had decided “to strip the word ‘science’ from a statement of its long-range plan.” Is this just a reflection of the long standing division between physical and cultural anthropology or is there more here? The revised statement says that “the purposes of the association shall be to advance public understanding of humankind in all its aspects,” a wording that opens the possibility for cultural anthropologists to engage in public advocacy on behalf of cultures they are studying. So, what kind of discipline is anthropology, after all? And, more broadly, should scientists cross the line from research into public advocacy?
An excursion into the history of Japanese studies with William Kelly (Yale)
George Marcus and Orlan speak about art, performance and anthropology.
Paris, Levi Strauss Theater. March 2008