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ANTHRO-SCIENCES  September 2002, Week 1

ANTHRO-SCIENCES September 2002, Week 1

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Subject:

Re: Take 2--on method.

From:

MJLeaf <[log in to unmask]>

Reply-To:

Anthropological Sciences SIG <[log in to unmask]>

Date:

Mon, 2 Sep 2002 12:42:51 -0700

Content-Type:

text/plain

Parts/Attachments:

Parts/Attachments

text/plain (56 lines)

On method: I have attended C&A, Cultural Anthropology, Economic
Anthropology, Linquistic and AES meetings and panels.  The rest was
mainly based on what appears in their recent Newsletter columns, people
that I know in each and impressions from their panels and panel
abstracts. But what the characterization was aimed at is what they are
likely to come up with as panels (which is why I did not venture into
openness or cliquishness, although it matters).
   The obslervations are only quick impressions to see how it adds up.
Additional views can only help. The main point is still the underlying
dynamic, which seems clear enough to shine through differences in
detail. Here, I take it, Jay is saying we may have more allies in
existing sections than my characterizations suggest. I agree.
MJL

Jay Bernstein wrote:
> I read Murray Leaf's take on the AAA sections with interest.  Are these
> characterizations based on observations of business meetings or knowledge of
> their executive or editorial committees?
>
> I've kind of withdrawn from the profession of anthropology in recent years,
> but I'd like to give my thoughts on section meetings--my own ethnographic
> observations if you will--in reference to their air of openness vs.
> cliquishness and objectivity vs. emotionality--all related somehow to pro
> science/antiscience.
>
> I think Culture and Agriculture is pro-science and open, but I also thought
> the Society for the Anthropology of Consciousness was pretty pro-science and
> open.
>
> The Society for Medical Anthropology I found closed and cliquish and
> therefore not so objective and maybe anti-science.
>
> American Ethnological Society was super-closed and cliquish.  I wouldn't say
> they were definitely anti-science though of course there are post-modernist
> elements.
>
> The Society for Psychological Anthropology was more pro-science but
> susceptible to cult of personality.
>
> In the Southeast Asianist groups with which I was associated, there was
> great concern about the antiscience tendencies afflicting the AAA.  They
> have not to date organized as a section or interest group and the Borneo
> Research Council has held independent meetings, extending its boundaries
> beyond anthropology.  But I have found them open, congenial, and
> pro-science.
>
> Another group not in anthropology but working toward an open and scientific
> anthropology is the International Society for Human Ethology.
>
> I did not think the Society for the Anthropology of Religion was antiscience
> and they should be considered allies in the attempt to recenter anthropology
> and revive its scientific spirit.
>
> Jay H. Bernstein
> Executive Director
> Library of Social Science

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