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“Anthropologists tend to exaggerate differences and to downplay commonalities. It is our moral duty to correct this distorted picture,” said Jeremy MacClancy at the first international workshop of the Overheating project.
The recent Ebola crisis in Sierra Leone, Liberia and Guinea has spurred a range of responses from all over the world. Some of these responses exemplify the ongoing stereotyping of Africa and Africans. Public discourse, unfortunately, still has the tendency of addressing Africa as a country, a war ridden space full of sadness and its inhabitants as savage and helpless. But stereotypes are not limited to these images of misery.
The majority of Norwegian food production no longer takes place in the field or in the barn.
Following the life of the worlds' simplest shoe provides encounters with the biggest migration streams in history, flip-flop smugglers in fast cars or on camels, and anxious company owners who don't want researchers nosing around.
Economic theories are not enough to understand economic processes. At the next Overheating seminar, Nina Boy will show that literary studies can provide important insights into the world of finance.
Learn from Caribbeans and see the world as many small interconnected islands that can only exist as a whole, says Kristian Van Haesendonck, who will speak at the next Overheating-seminar.
40 years ago it was an insignificant fishing village, now Macaé is Brazil’s bustling oil capital. While the oil rush is widely celebrated, both the favelas of the poor and the gated communities of the rich are growing, says Caroline Inglingstad.
Even deep in the Amazon jungle people feel the consequences of global economic policies. In Peru, Margrethe Steinert is studying how the Asháninka indigenous people deal with mining companies, migrants and the neoliberal state.
When mining sites, shipyards and power plants are built in their neighborhoods, many locals feel they have no say in it. – When big money is involved, politics tends to become less democratic. The slogan is no longer ‘people first’, but ‘money first’, Thomas Hylland Eriksen said at the largest gathering of anthropologists in Europe.
Corsica is perfectly suited for organic farming. But the growing tourism industry has turned arable land into housing estates. Young people are unsuccessfully looking for farm land, says anthropologist Marie Stormo Nilsson.
Fair prices, better working conditions, security: It is supposed to be a solution to economic injustice. But in the tiny Caribbean island Dominica, more and more banana farmers are leaving Fair Trade, tells Frida Aamnes.
Lack of energy not only harms businesses in Nepal, but also contributes to new class divides, pollution and migration to richer countries.
How to collaborate in a research project when your collegues are spread across five continents? Email? Skype? Facebook? The Overheating-team found something intellectually more rewarding.
Do old civilizational traditions still play a role in economic life today? In a new project, Overheating researcher Chris Hann wants to show that so-called civilizational analysis can give us new insights into the current political and economic crises - and maybe also solutions.
Ten years after the civil war, life has come back to Lunsar in Sierra Leone. Anthropologist Robert Pijpers is talking with CEOs and motortaxi drivers about the current mining boom, the influx of new people and investments, and about the resettlement of entire villages.
What are the side effects of extracting oil in the Canadian tar sands areas? – Before I came to Canada, I thought the environmental crisis was the most urgent. But I cannot say this anymore, says anthropologist Lena Gross.
Tensions are high in Subic Bay in the Philippines. The costs of Labour are among the lowest in Southeast Asia – something more and more foreign investors have come to exploit, says Elisabeth Schober, who is currently on fieldwork there.
How do you promote creativity in the workplace? The architects at Snøhetta use magic. This is something more companies should aim for, says anthropologist Aina Landsverk Hagen.
People in Colca Valley are organizing forums to discuss climate change, food security and a controversial dam and irrigation project, says Astrid Bredholt Stensrud, currently on fieldwork in the Peruvian Andes.
If we want to move towards ecological sustainability, we cannot ignore the life-worlds of people who make their living in the fossil fuel industry, says Thomas Hylland Eriksen, currently on fieldwork in the industrial town of Gladstone in Australia.
It has taken us several hundred million years to produce this compressed sunlight, and it has been the driving force of modern civilization for two hundred years. It cannot be eliminated without further ado, writes Thomas Hylland Eriksen.
Elephants clashing with human beings on their paddy fields, people dying from kidney failure, climatic uncertainty, increased jealousy leading to sorcery attacks, and the nearing end of small-scale farming: Results of a global crisis of desire?
China’s economic growth does not always benefit its national minorities. Instead, it strains ethnic relations.
A discipline that is obsessed with cultural differences will be nothing but a burden to humanity, says Ronald Stade who is researching human waste and humans as waste in Ghana’s largest slum.
Social anthropologists are not only crossing disciplinary boundaries. They have also started studying other species.