Histories of Anthropology Annual - Vol. 3

Histories of Anthropology Annual - Vol. 3

Histories of Anthropology Annual - Vol. 3

Histories of Anthropology Annual - Vol. 3

Synopsis

Histories of Anthropology Annual presents diverse perspectives on the discipline's history within a global context. Critical, comparative, analytical, and narrative studies involving all aspects and subfields of anthropology are included. Volume 3 features critical and biographical studies of Sir Richard Burton, Frank Hamilton Cushing, J. N. B. Hewitt, Stephen Leacock, Anténor Firmin, and Leslie A. White. Analytical topics include applied and collaborative anthropologies, Edward Sapir's phonemic poetics, mercantile proto-capitalism, the Delaware Big House ceremony, and race and racism in anthropology.

Excerpt

Regna Darnell, University of Western Ontario Frederic W. Gleach, Cornell University

With volume 3, Histories of Anthropology Annual has clearly established a critical mass demonstrating the legitimacy and interest within the discipline in different possible positionings regarding its history. Some readers may concentrate on the stories or case studies, others will be concerned with the theoretical voices of histories within the discipline; some will focus on individual pieces, while others may seek the strands that draw certain pieces together. the thirty-two articles published to date vary greatly in subject matter, methodologies, and links to other disciplines or approaches. There could be no clearer demonstration that there are multiple possible and actual histories of anthropology. This volume for the first time represents all four traditional subdisciplines of anthropology, and moves through several national traditions and their intersections with work in diverse ethnographic areas. Pieces range from individual biography to examinations of theoretical streams and institutional contexts, but all expand in their connections and implications to broader issues than may seem to be their subject at first glance.

While each paper stands on its own as a piece of disciplinary history, we identify a kind of unity of theory and method that engages with the significance of studying and writing histories of anthropology from within the discipline. Looking at only one volume, one might be inclined to consider the contents to be random. Looking at several volumes, however, the existence of a journal where colleagues can find historical reflection and research begins to justify itself. Thematic volumes of interest to the history/ies of anthropology have been around for a long time. But what does one do with a paper that stands alone? Often, such papers are written for conference sessions or volumes where they appear as the first contribution and set a context for what follows. Such an approach shows that anthropologists think historically about their work, but it does not focus attention on the process of historicizing and its relation to disciplinary praxis. We surmise that the majority of anthropological histori-

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