The UN Declaration of Human Rights and the 2017 US Tax Bill: Reflecting on the Anthropological Response

8 Dec

Mattering Anthropology, Anthropology Matters

6 Dec

The Geek Anthropologist

By Emma Louise Backe

Anthropology Matters! was the exhortation of the 116th American Anthropological Association Annual meeting this year in Washington, D.C. The frenetic energy of the 115th meeting, marked by the recent 2016 election of now president Donald J. Trump, has instead hardened around an overt and concentrated attempt to historicize the sociopolitical events of the present and prognisticate directions for the future. Yet the exclamatory nature of Anthropology Matters feels ineffectual. Are we trying to signal to the broader intellectual community and American public that anthropology does indeed matter? Or are we instead convincing ourselves that our choice of discipline was legitimate, necessary?

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AAA at Global Climate Change Conference – “We’re Still In”

10 Nov

[In The News] Conservation Organizations Abuse BaYaka Forest Foragers

27 Sep

New Mexico school standards water down evolution, geology, and climate change

20 Sep

Why Evolution Is True

Mother Jones has an article by Andy Kroll about how the state of New Mexico has watered down a widespread and excellent secondary school science curriculum (grades kindergarden through 12): the Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS) developed in conjunction with National Research Council, the National Science Teachers Association, and the American Association for the Advancement of Science.  The state’s public education department released a document (here) that proposes changes to its existing standards that have changed some of the NGSS guidelines.

And these changes aren’t random: in the main, they water down evolution, remove evidence for the age of the earth, and imply that global warming is a “fluctuation” rather than a trend. Glenn Branch of the NCSE reacted:

“These changes are evidently intended to placate creationists and climate change deniers,” says Glenn Branch, the deputy director of the National Center for Science Education, a nonprofit group that…

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The Years That Ask Questions: Epistemologies of Liberation and the Post-Charlottesville Imperative

15 Sep

How do you raise a child? Insights from a World of Babies

13 May

Ancient Human DNA Extracted From Ice Age Caves Without Human Remains

1 May

Preparing a sediment sample for DNA extraction. Photo by Sylvio Tüpke and Max Planck / Institute for Evolutionary Anthropology Preparing a sediment sample for DNA extraction. Photo by Sylvio Tüpke and Max Planck / Institute for Evolutionary Anthropology

Ancient DNA has come a long way, baby. We now don’t even need the bones any more to pick up traces of prehistoric beings. This highly sensitive technique for analyzing ancient DNA was announced last week in Science.  Studying 85 sediment samples from seven 14,000 to 550,000 year old caves in Europe and Russia, senior author Matthias Meyer and his team of researchers first isolated all DNA from the soil samples. Unsurprisingly, most belonged to bacteria. About 0.05 to 10% belonged to mammals.

The authors then created a targeted enrichment of mitochondrial DNA, a type of bait, to identify the exact DNA to particular species, such as hominins as well as a variety of animals such as the woolly mammoth and woolly rhinos, cave bears and cave hyenas. Neandertal DNA was found in eight…

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Anthropology: A Love Story

15 Feb

Is sex a social construct like gender? Nope.

14 Feb

Why Evolution Is True

The video below, highlighted on Everyday Feminism, came with a few words on the website:

“Yes, trans women are women, but they’re still biologically male.”

Ever thought or said something like this? You might even have good intentions by stating what you think is a simple fact – after all, gender is a social construct, while sex is biological, right?

Actually, this “simple fact” of trans women being “biologically male” is inaccurate – and this misrepresentation of the truth is being used to justify some pretty hateful things.

So if you really want the facts, and to follow through on your good intentions by being a good ally, check out Riley J. Dennis’ explanation of why trans women are not biologically male.

With Love,
The Editors at Everyday Feminism

Well, I’d like to be a good ally, but not by denying the truth. And, in fact, sex is indeed biological—not a…

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