Around the Web

Ignoring the Iroquois:

  • The Iroquois Nationals, the flagship lacrosse team of the Iroquois Confederacy which spans the U.S. and Canadian border, were invited to the 2010 World Lacrosse Championships in England but did not play. The host country refused to recognize the players’ Haudenosaunee passports, insisting that they travel as Americans or Candians before a visa would be issued. The game of stickball tightly bound to their tribal identity, the Iroquis team felt that nothing is more important than their sovereignty and did not yeild.

Defining contemporary racism:

  • John Jackson takes up an issue that, with Arizona’s immigration legisilation, Mel Gibson’s latest rantings, and the NAACP’s calling out of extreme elements in the Tea Party, has been at the forefront of politics and culture lately. He makes two important points about racism that I find myself largely agreeing with. First: “racists are never just racists… To call someone racist isn’t about explanatory exclusivity.” And second: “racism is less about what someone is (absolutely and forever) than about what a person does (in specific moments)… it doesn’t make sense to think of racism the way we think of, say, racial identity (as something we conspicuously carry around with us all the time, everywhere we go).”

Other news, not at all related to racism:

  • Users of Facebook India can now get an app to whiten their skin in their profile photos, brought to you by Vaseline skin whitening creams. Thanks global capitalism!

Maxine Udall, girl economist:

  • Following up on the animated David Harvey lecture, I clicked on a link from Ethnografix to this blog by Maxine Udall and I’ve been rewarded for it. The posts have a witty, conversational tone like this one about the challenges of sailing a small boat against bigger boats (that can steal your wind) as a metaphor for the difficulties of opperating a small business in the ongoing recession. I’ll be keeping an eye on this well written blog.

Propublica wins at journalism:

  • Check out this awesome database on the how the federal stimulus package is being spent. Just click on your state and you’ll be provided with details that break down the spending by county and correlates that with unemployment data. I am optimistic about the future of non-profit journalism and what such entities can provide for our society. It certainly provides a compelling model in comparison to the MSM.

Primates in pictures:

Paging physical anthropologists:

  • Can somebody debunk this please? A paper in the Review of Economics and Statistics claims that “unattractive individuals commit more crime in comparison to average-looking ones, and beautiful individuals commit less crime.” This makes me want to barf in anger! Gak! I’m choking on my own rage here. Although I love the imagery of the man getting his head measured. Def swiping that for use in a Gen Anth lecture.

Section news:

  • SANA needs a web person who can design a new look for the site, decrease clutter, improve organization, modify design and make the underlying code more accessible/compliant with industry standards. The position pays $1,000 per annum and includes a seat on the SANA board. The site is now mostly informational and requires only monthly updates. SANA has basic web hosting and benefits from technologies no more advanced than Flash, Java, Javascript and simple HTML and CSS. Requirements: Ideally an Anthropology Graduate student, but definitely familiar with the academy. Able to make the regular updates to the site upon request of the officers (a few hours of work per month). MUST be proficient in HTML 4.0 and CSS 2.0. Capable to do research into other technologies to evaluate their usefulness to SANA. Submit to lbolles@umd.edu, Noah.Gillespie@rockets.utoledo.edu and john.clarke@open.ac.uk a resume, focusing on web experience, 2 references including email addresses, and a mock-up proposal for SANA home page. DEADLINE JULY 29, 2010

New Classic Maya discovery:

  • A tomb in Guatemala, so well sealed that it produced “a smell of putrification” when it was opened has yeilded forth textiles, wood carvings, and ceramics.

Timewaster: The Old Spice meme makes it to the academic library–

Seen something around the web that you’d like to share with the Savage Minds community? Email me at mdthomps@odu.edu.

Matt Thompson is adjunct assistant professor of anthropology in the Department of Sociology and Criminal Justice at Old Dominion University and a student in the School of Information Science at the University of Tennessee. He was once cast as a soldier in Andrew Jackson's army in a theatrical production on an Indian reservation.

9 thoughts on “Around the Web

  1. It’s funny that you linked an article about racism, because I just saw one today that is really fascinating. A USDA employee giving a speech at an NAACP meeting recalled a story about a white farmer that needed help, but she didn’t help him as much as she could, because there were black farmers that needed help. She actually said publicly that she turned him over to “white lawyers, and I figured his people could help him.” I didn’t think it was weird that it happened, because these things happen all the time, but the fact that she didn’t think it was something she probably shouldn’t have said in public.

    http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20100720/ap_on_go_ca_st_pe/us_usda_racism_resignation_9

    As far as the attractive correlation to crime, that would make sense to me. Attractive people pretty much get what they want given to them, and get away with things when they do get caught for a crime more often. That’s just a fact of life. I know because I’m tall life is easier for me. I think it was Match.com (one of those) that stated that a guy at 5’8 has to make more than 30,000 dollars a year more than me at 6’1 to match the dates possible online.

  2. The host country refused to recognize the players’ Haudenosaunee passports, insisting that they travel as Americans or Candians before a visa would be issued.

    It is interesting that none of the reports mention the Canadian government’s stance on the situation (and I am assuming that some of the individuals on the team are Canadian rather than U.S. citizens).

    The game of stickball tightly bound to their tribal identity, the Iroquis team felt that nothing is more important than their sovereignty and did not yeild.

    I don’t think they call it stickball in the Northeast, though I could be wrong.☺ I wonder if the different parties to the dispute have distinct issues—this is certainly a sovereignty issue to the Haudenosaunee but I suspect it is about security and/or some combination of domestic and international politics to the Brits.

    I’m sure this is incredibly frustrating and disappointing to the team’s players but I think it will turn out to be great press for the Six Nations! And isn’t that ultimately what nation-vs.-nation sporting events are really about?

  3. RE: the USDA caseworker, the story is still unfolding–
    http://www.thedailybeast.com/cheat-sheet/item/farmers-wife-defends-usda-worker/redeemed/?cid=cs:headline2

    Here’s more–
    http://gawker.com/5592288/white-house-embarrasses-itself-over-andrew-breitbarts-race+baiting

    Basically the video of the caseworker’s story was edited by a race-baiting conservative who only wanted to embarrass the Obama administration (which, I might add looks pretty dumb now that they pushed her out, hopefully she’ll at least get a book deal out of it).

    In the full video the caseworker goes on to explain that that was merely her knee-jerk reaction and that upon self-reflection she learned that “race is not the issue, its about people who have and the people who don’t.” Subsequently she went on to help this white family and now the farmer’s wife calls her a “friend for life.”

    Now what’s really interesting is how ready everyone was to believe the edited video.

  4. Dear SM comment writers,

    I took down two posts from Andrew and Rick, please let me explain why. I’m afraid I’m making an example of them, but I don’t mean to single anyone out or ostracize those two readers. We at SM value both your comments very much.

    The SM editors have been discussing in email conversations making changes to our comment policy. A post officially announcing this will be made soon. At any rate we’ve all resolved to be more pro-active in monitoring discussions.

    We would all like to see an end to aggressive posts and personal attacks. Andrew, if you don’t like what Rick has to say about racism then ignore him. Or better yet, engage the topic from an anthropological angle. I highly recommend the John Jackson piece I link to and I’d love to talk about it with someone.

    A second observation is the tendency of a few readers to monopolize the discussions section by writing extremely long comments. I strongly believe that brevity is a virtue. Rick, if you’re going to drop 1500 words on a topic might I suggest that you do so on your own blog. It’s easy to get started and I find it very rewarding. The whole reason for SM’s existence is to encourage more anthros to blog. Everyone should do it!

    So let’s talk about anthropology my friends, we can even argue and debate. And let’s do so a couple of hundred words at at time.

    Warm regards,
    //Matt

  5. Her response is pretty awful. She asks why the concern is mostly in the US but it took me 30 seconds of browsing to find discussion in the Indian press in English.

    “And why aren’t Americans critical of the tanning products that Vaseline and related companies make? Frankly, I’m struggling to make sense of the complex narratives that are playing out right now.”

    So simplistic I don’t know what to say. Tanning is temporary. Jungle fever may go both ways but power relations aren’t so fluid.

  6. Maybe I should have been more cautious in my judgments Kerim, vis-a-vis India. I didn’t even think of who I was responding to.

    But her take on blackness in the US was so simplistic I was surprised.

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