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Anthropologies

Thanks to everyone who is working to create new ways of communicating and discussing the pressing issues of our time. As has been discussed by Kerim at Savage Minds and Daniel at Neuroanthropogy, a new project in anthropology has just debuted:  Anthropologies edited by Ryan Anderson. It is blog based magazine focused on exploring:

contemporary anthropology through essays, short articles, and opinion pieces written from diverse perspectives.  There is no single way to define the field, hence “anthropologies.”  By presenting various viewpoints and positions, this site seeks to highlight not only what anthropology means to those who practice it, but also how those meanings are relevant to wider audiences.

I have just begun my reading of the first issues with Keith Hart’s “Kant, Anthropology and the New Human Universal.” It is a an accessible, compelling, valuable, and brief essay that builds upon the key arguments about the promise/necessity of anthropology that he has been developing in recent work, including The Human Economy, which I am now reading. It certainly has motivated me to remedy my failure to have read Immanuel Kant’s Anthropology from a Pragmatic Point of View.

Thanks Keith and the other authors. Thanks to the editor and everyone else who is fostering this project.

I would like to offer one suggestion, by way of a coda. Having been down a similar path before, I know how handy blog software like blogger is for getting such a project off the ground quickly and cheaply. All to the good. The only costs are that there is no built in preservation framework and the site does not allow for Open Archives Initiative Protocols for Metadata Harvesting (OAI-PMH). Without an OAI compliant framework, broadly used tools like Google Scholar will not be able to harvest metadata and, along the way, put works published in Anthropologies on scholarly radar. More specifically, OAI-PMH allows more topically focused projects, such as the Open Folklore project on which I work, to harvest and thereby promote the discovery of, content published in places like Anthropologies. There are many ways to address this matter inexpensively. A place to begin would be UKnowledge, the University of Kentucky Institutional Repository, which appears to be gearing up to support journal like projects, among other things. Such repositories make materials available in harvestable ways while also insuring longterm preservation. It would be possible to deposit PDF copies of Anthropologies content after the fact without giving up the basic blogger-based format.

 


2 Comments Post a comment
  1. Hi Jason,

    Thanks for posting about this project – it came together pretty quickly after reading a lot of the discussions going around about communicating anthropology. I really appreciate your suggestions about looking into a more permanent framework for the project. Thanks, also, for looking into some of the possibilities here at UK. I will definitely pursue these avenues. Again, very appreciated! Some of this I am kind of figuring out as I go, so this is incredibly helpful.

    -Ryan

    March 21, 2011

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