The Happiness Fetish Revisited

In response to several surveys that attempt to quantify happiness, Ryan, Adam, and Aneil spend this episode of This Anthro Life exploring happiness through the lens of fetishism. They discuss Daniel Gilbert’s Stumbling on Happiness, the film Happy, and more! They seek to answer the following questions: What kinds of things make us happy? How does happiness inhere in objects and how do we use objects to display our happiness? They end on a positive note by concluding that we have control over our happiness and suggesting a happy community may be a key part of being happy.   Continue reading


Conversations and Podcasting as Social Technology

This episode is a little different from our normal content. In it we feature a presentation Adam gave for Pivotal Labs in which he explores This Anthro Life’s (and his own) developing philosophy about conversations and podcasting as social technologies and what the worlds of anthropology and podcasting can do. Some topics Adam touches on include: what anthropology does in the world, conversation as “little social laboratories”, mapping the contemporary podcast ‘cosmos’, podcasters as cultural brokers, and the kinds of stories we well as Charismatic Data. 

During this pseudo-episode (think of it like a Conversation meets a FreeThink) Adam asks the questions: What makes conversation a social technology? And how can data be charismatic? Continue reading


The Stories Bones Tell w/ Kristina Killgrove

Click here to read our blog post on Savage Minds

This Anthro Life has teamed up with Savage Minds to bring you a special 5-part podcast and blog crossover series. While thinking together as two anthropological productions that exist for multiple kinds of audiences and publics, we became inspired to have a series of conversations about why anthropology matters today. In this series we’re sitting down with some of the folks behind Savage Minds, SAPIENS, the American Anthropological Association and the Society for American Archaeology to bring you conversations on anthropological thinking and its relevance through an innovative blend of audio and text.

In our fourth episode of the TAL + SM collaboration Ryan and Adam chat with Dr. Kristina Killgrove about her strategies for engaging popular audiences through writing. We start by discussing interdisciplinary collaboration and its role in improving writing. Then we explore Kristina’s strategies for choosing content to cover in her blog, Powered by Osteons. We end by considering some ways anthropology has changed in terms of crowdfunding and the possibilities of open data.

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Writing “in my Culture” w/ Zoe Wool and Alex Golub of Savage Minds

This Anthro Life has teamed up with Savage Minds to bring you a special 5-part podcast and blog crossover series. While thinking together as two anthropological productions that exist for multiple kinds of audiences and publics, we became inspired to have a series of conversations about why anthropology matters today. For this series we’re sitting down with some of the folks behind Savage Minds, SAPIENS, the American Anthropological Association and the Society for American Archaeology to bring you conversations on anthropological thinking and its relevance through an innovative blend of audio and text. That means each week for the month of June we’ll bring you two dialogues – one podcast and one blog post – with innovative anthropological thinkers and doers. 

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Visual Anthropology Revisited, pt 2

We like to bring you some of our favorite conversations from our catalogue as we think about new ways to explore the topic. This week we’re bringing you our Visual Anthropology conversation split into two, digestible parts, so here’s part 2. Plus we (still) miss Aneil and wanted to hear his voice again. We hope you enjoy the conversation revisited with us! Join us for an ‘enlightening’ trip as we ‘shed some light’ on the world of sight, seeing, and visual anthropology. In this episode we explore the deep impact of visual culture across the globe and time from ancient Greece to the invention of photography to metaphors of knowledge, to genotypes and phenotypes, arrangement of food, and more!

If you like TAL, please drop us a 5-star review on iTunes or Stitcher or however you enjoy the podcast. If you are able, dropping us a couple of bucks makes a huge difference in making the show sustainable! 


Visual Anthropology Revisited, pt 1

We like to bring you some of our favorite conversations from our catalogue as we think about new ways to explore the topic. This week we’re bringing you our Visual Anthropology conversation split into two, digestible parts. Plus we miss Aneil and wanted to hear his voice again. We hope you enjoy the conversation revisited with us! Join us for an ‘enlightening’ trip as we ‘shed some light’ on the world of sight, seeing, and visual anthropology. In this episode we explore the deep impact of visual culture across the globe and time from ancient Greece to the invention of photography to metaphors of knowledge, to genotypes and phenotypes, arrangement of food, and more!

 

Check out some links discussed in the episode:

Lucien Castaing-Taylor
Sweetgrass film
Leviathan

If you like TAL, please drop us a 5-star review on iTunes or Stitcher or however you enjoy the podcast. If you are able, dropping us a couple of bucks makes a huge difference in making the show sustainable! Check out the PayPal link below, thanks so much!

 

Visual Anthropology originally Aired 4/15/14


On the Craft of Writing w/ Dr. Anita Hannig

How do academics write for a variety of audiences? Is routine a necessary part of creating? How many times will Ryan mention Stephen King? In this episode of This Anthro Life, Adam and Ryan talk with Anita Hannig of Brandeis University about the writing process behind her new book, Beyond Surgery: Injury, Healing, and Religion at an Ethiopian Hospital.  While they are looking at writing as a craft from the perspective of anthropologists, Ryan, Adam, and Anita draw on a variety of perspectives outside of the discipline to suggest some tips for writing routine, reaching a broad audience, and writing ethnography.

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Dating your Ancestors is Complicated: The Strange Case of Homo Naledi

Photo: John Hawks. Homo naledi has much in common with early forms of the genus Homo

On this episode, Adam and Ryan dive into the complexities of our ever evolving human family. How we understand our ancient ancestors, cousins, and ape family has the potential to impact our understanding of what it means to be human and how we are still changing. The new and exciting data we dive into this episode is all about Homo Naledi, perhaps the most recent addition to our family. As of the day we recorded this episode, April 25th, the first concrete date range for the species was publicized (but stay tuned for further developments). Rather than being very early (that is more ancient) and dating to the time of the earliest Homo Erectus specimens as originally hypothesized (some 2 million years ago), it now appears that Naledi was potentially a contemporary of the earliest Homo Sapiens (that’s us) ranging from 200 to 300 thousand years ago. This means we need to re-evaluate our genus once again and think about the complexities of dating our ancestors.

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FreeThink 5: Finding Balance in the Midst of Burnout

Freethink #5: Finding Balance in the midst of Burnout

In this week’s free think Ryan and Adam talk burning out and finding balance. They reflect on their travels to conferences for the Society for Applied Anthropology and the Society for American Archaeology and why conferences are inspirational and invigorating. Also the AMAZING fact that TAL now has over 11,000 subscribers!! Thank you so much to everyone for helping us build the tribe, let’s keep taking this to the top! Social Consciousness FTW.

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FreeThink #4: On Art, Creativity, and Bringing Awe back to Anthropology

As you may have noticed, TAL has been on a bit of a break from releasing new episodes. But, the good news is that we have not been idle. The other night when Ryan and Adam were out and about they got to talking about TAL and their perspectives on public anthropology. What does the future hold? What inspires change? Realizing they were on to something good, they pulled out a phone and hit record. This episode is what came out. We hope you’ll enjoy! This episode was recorded live and near a kitchen so please forgive the extra noise :). In this FreeThink Ryan and Adam get a little personal, shedding light on their own stories, views on art, religion, creative writing, literature, and what it is that drives the team to do anthropology. Continue reading