Reading List: National Anthropology Day

Today, February 19, is National Anthropology Day. The study of humankind is a fascinating and constantly changing area. Below are our most recently published titles in anthropology.

MarkowitzToward an Anthropology of Nation Building and Unbuilding in Israel

Edited and with an introduction by Fran Markowitz, Stephen Sharot, and Moshe Shokeid

Twenty-two original essays that offer a critical survey of the anthropology of Israel as inspired by the analyses of Alex Weingrod, emeritus professor and pioneering scholar of Israeli anthropology.




Ezell-Far Corner.inddA Far Corner: Life and Art with the Open Circle Tribe

By Scott Ezell

In 2002, after living ten years in Asia, American poet and musician Scott Ezell used his advance from a local record company to move to Dulan, on Taiwan’s remote Pacific coast. He fell in with the Open Circle Tribe, a loose confederation of aboriginal woodcarvers, painters, and musicians who lived on the beach and cultivated a living connection with their indigenous heritage. In Dulan, Ezell joined song circles and was invited on an extended hunting expedition; he weathered typhoons, had love affairs, and lost close friends. A Far Corner Ezell draws on these experiences to explore issues on a more global scale. The result is a beautifully crafted and personal evocation of a sophisticated culture that is almost entirely unknown to Western readers. Read a guest post from Ezell here.



MihasUpper Perené Arawak Narratives of History, Landscape, and Ritual

By Elena Mihas with Gregorio Santos Pérez and Delia Rosas Rodríguez

The rich storytelling traditions of the Ashéninka Perené Arawaks of eastern Peru are showcased in this bilingual collection of traditional narratives, ethnographic accounts, women’s autobiographical stories, songs, chants, and ritual speeches. The Ashéninkas are located in the colonization frontier at the foot of the eastern Andes and the western fringe of the Amazonian jungle. Unfortunately, their language has a slim chance of surviving because only about three hundred fluent speakers remain. This volume collects and preserves the power and vitality of Ashéninka oral and linguistic traditions, as told by thirty members of the Native community.



DarnellAnthropologists and Their Traditions across National Borders

Edited by Regna Darnell and Frederic W. Gleach

Volume 8 of the Histories of Anthropology Annual series, the premier series published in the history of the discipline, explores national anthropological traditions in Britain, the United States, and Europe and follows them into postnational contexts. Contributors reassess the major theorists in twentieth-century anthropology, including the work of luminaries such as Franz Boas, Claude Lévi-Strauss, Bronisław Malinowski, A. R. Radcliffe-Brown, and Marshall Sahlins, as well as lesser-known but important anthropological work by Berthold Laufer, A. M. Hocart, Kenelm O. L. Burridge, and Robin Ridington, among others.



Fluent SelvesFluent Selves: Autobiography, Person, and History in Lowland South America 

Edited by Suzanne Oakdale and Magnus Course

Fluent Selves examines narrative practices throughout lowland South America focusing on indigenous communities in Brazil, Chile, Ecuador, and Peru, illuminating the social and cultural processes that make the past as important as the present for these peoples. This collection brings together leading scholars in the fields of anthropology and linguistics to examine the intersection of these narratives of the past with the construction of personhood. The volume’s exploration of autobiographical and biographical accounts raises questions about fieldwork, ethical practices, and cultural boundaries in the study of anthropology.



WilsonUses of Plants by the Hidatsas of the Northern Plains

By Gilbert Livingston Wilson, edited and annotated by Michael Scullin

In 1916 anthropologist Gilbert L. Wilson worked closely with Buffalobird-woman, a highly respected Hidatsa born in 1839 on the Fort Berthold Reservation in western North Dakota, for a study of the Hidatsas’ uses of local plants. What resulted was a treasure trove of ethnobotanical information that was buried for more than seventy-five years in Wilson’s archives, now held jointly by the Minnesota Historical Society and the American Museum of Natural History in New York City. Wilson recorded Buffalobird-woman’s insightful and vivid descriptions of how the nineteenth-century Hidatsa people had gathered, prepared, and used the plants and wood in their local environment for food, medicine, smoking, fiber, fuel, dye, toys, rituals, and construction.

Browse all of our anthropology books here.

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