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- Genese Marie Sodikoff on forest conservation, Malagasy worker-peasants and biodiversity
- Settler Colonial Nature in the Everglades
- AAA 2012 - Anthropology and Environment Society Invited Sessions & Events
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- Spiritual Ecology: A Quiet Revolution
- How Will New Models Shape Our Research?
- Bring heritage breeds to holiday table
- Forest and Labor in Madagascar: From Colonial Concession to Global Biosphere
- A Glimpse of Africa’s future?
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Author Archives: webmaster
A new book reports on detailed ethnographic work showing how neoliberal policies are affecting commodity producers in Mexico.
New research in Nature by a large group of scholars, including anthropologists Paige West and Marina Cords, examines impacts of deforestation on tropical biodiversity hotspots.
Aaron Bobrow-Strain has written White Bread: A Social History of the Store-Bought Loaf. See his blog at the website for the Society for the Anthropology of Food and Nutrition.
Reporter Oliver Steeds travels the globe to investigate the conservation movement and its major organisations. Steeds finds that the movement, far from stemming the tide of extinction that’s engulfing the planet, has got some of its conservation priorities wrong.
The AAA Task Force on Global Climate Change is relatively new and we have just finalized our membership, so we would like to introduce ourselves and explore mutual interests with A&E on issues about the environment, agriculture, food, archaeology, or public policy. One of the most striking things we’ve discovered so far is the growing extent to which anthropological and archaeological inquiry is focused on climate change, both historical/archaeological and in contemporary ethnography and political ecological analysis. Anthropologists are working in communities and arenas where climate change is affecting the people with whom we work, either directly via the environment, or through institutions and programs as a result of global governance related to climate change. As humans and cultures, we have been down some of these paths before (adjusting to swings in climate) with critical lessons, as archaeologists are showing us. Continue reading
A new website created by a group of environmental anthropologists provides background and resources for the important documentary Green which critically explores the “green” palm oil industry and primates.
From Modern Production to Imagined Primitive:The Social World of Coffee from Papua New Guinea (Duke University Press).
In From Modern Production to Imagined Primitive, Paige West tracks coffee as it moves from producers in Papua New Guinea to consumers around the world. She illuminates the social lives of the people who produce coffee, and those who process, distribute, market, and consume it.
Paige West writes against two kinds of flatness: the flatness of commodity chain studies and the flatness of ethical consumption's marketing spin. She offers, instead, a richly peopled ethnographic account of coffee's trajectory through time, space, lives, and imaginations, and takes us deep into the contradictory heart of our neoliberal times. Penetrating, provocative, and moving, this is an excellent read.—Tania Murray Li, University of Toronto.
Coffee is a global and of course a ubiquitous commodity. And here lies its analytical challenge: how to grasp the full complexity of a drug whose path from production to consumption entails a world of enormous semiotic, cultural, institutional, political, economic, and ecological complexity. Paige West takes us deep into the heart of coffee's image world, as a spectacle, as a brand, and as a carrier of forms of certified value. But she also pursues the bean into the highlands of Papua New Guinea, where the crop, paradoxically, has little cultural value, and through the global supply chains of corporate shippers and processors. Here is an ethnography which exposes our morning cappuccino to the bright light of modernity. From Modern Production to Imagined Primitive does for coffee what Sidney Mintz in Sweetness and Power did for sugar: here in short is a meditation on caffeine and power.—Michael Watts, Chancellor's Professor, University of California, Berkeley
For more information, and to order the book directly, visit Duke University Press.
New findings in India’s Bt cotton controversy: good for the field, bad for the farm? Crop yields from India’s first genetically modified crop may have been overemphasized, as modest rises in crop yields may come at the expense of sustainable farm management, says a new study by a Washington University anthropologist.