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Public anthropology


In recent weeks Savageminds drew attention to the need for anthropology to be more engaging and public, with posts by Erin Taylor and Alex Golub. Taylor called on anthropologists to do more in spreading the word(s) of fellow anthropologists already working hard to make anthropology more accessible. Little gestures, perhaps a retweet, comment or facebook link gets the word out a little more. She also called on university departments to value interventions beyond the book, book chapter and journal article. Sadly universities largely administer us according to metrics that value income and reputational standing as attested by journals and book presses and not outreach, engagement and community work. But this is where Golub’s suggestions hit home in startling fashion: He recommends Amazon reviews and Wikipedia entries. The former ties our expertise to our (rarely significant) commercial value in publishing. We can spread reviews and insights about academic work much…

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