Anthropological Knots A symposium 15th January 2014

Anthropological Knots A symposium
15th January 2014

University of Helsinki, Social and Cultural Anthropology (Department of Social Research) in association with Hau: Journal of Ethnographic Theory

The current economic and political climate in many parts of the world is generating an increasing number of interventions from anthropologists, both individually and collectively. Amongst other things, these interventions concern anthropology itself as a discipline and as a practice, as well as commentaries on the shifting conditions that make anthropology possible. Many of these debates look both inwards and outwards, as they have always done: inwards at the new shapes anthropology is taking in response to these changing political and economic conditions; and outwards, making often pointed and public commentaries on contemporary structural and ideological conditions within which anthropology exists. This is not simply a question of advocacy, but rather touches on something more basic: a debate about the shifting boundaries that generate new kinds of gaps and interfaces between anthropology and other things. These are fresh spaces in which diverse threads might run in parallel, cross each other or become entangled; spaces that engender debates about locating reworked relations, separations and limits, as well as debates about thinking through what could and should be done next.
This issue centrally concerns the ties that bind anthropology together with itself and with the wider context in which anthropology has been practised in recent years. The symposium will bring together a small group of prominent anthropologists who have deliberately intervened, both within anthropology itself and more widely, and will consider the knots involved.

Michael Carrithers
University of Durham
David Graeber
London School of Economics
Chris Gregory
Australian National University
Marilyn Strathern
University of Cambridge

Keynote speakers:
“The ironies of a simple ethnographic project, or what it is to stand at the edge of anthropology looking in”
“On being relevant despite yourself – an anthropological conundrum.”
“On the severance of the indissoluble bond between economy and religion and the dehumanisation of anthropology”

“Anthropological reasoning: some thoughts”
January 15th 2014, 09:30 – 16:00, University of Helsinki Registration required: please click here to complete registration online*
Questions? Contact the organizer, Sarah Green (