Savage Minds Around the Web

Here are my (pretty much made up) resolutions for 2009.

Resolution 1: Make More Lists. Check out dlende’s obnoxiously fantastic post on the best anthropology blogs of 2008. And the last list of 2008, I promise. Posted over at archaeoporn are the top ten pseudo-archaeology topics of 2008. And of course Indy IV tops the list.

Resolution 2: Get more cool gizmos. Technology is awesome (and it could very well be the future!). Michael Wesch at Digital Ethnography wrote on the importance of teaching participatory media literacy in the classroom. Joining the ranks of new media scholars who remind us that young people aren’t inherently (or even mostly) techno-savvy, Wesch states that the majority of his students would prefer less technology in the classroom. Meanwhile, over at HASTAC, Jonathan Tarr posted on his new XO Laptop (from One Laptop Per Child), and his experience becoming accustomed to a machine that was designed for a non-first world audience.

Resolution 3: Get Outraged more often. John L. Jackson has been following the news surrounding the Obama transition team, whereas I have not. Jackson wrote a piece on the disturbing political ‘satire’ CD circulating the ranks of the Republican party including tracks like, “Barack, the Magic Negro,” and “The Star Spanglish Banner.”

Resolution 4: Be Relevant! Pam at Teaching Anthropology has started a multiple-post series on teaching U.S. college students about Africa. Her first post begins with the challenges of teaching about non- or minimal interference during research to her students, many of whom grew up in evangelical families in a post-9/11 society. Interesting stuff.

Resolution 5: Question Taboos. James Johnson at (Notes on) Politics, Theory, and Photography, responds to Richard Posner’s new book, How Judges Think. Johnson argues that social consensus, a reason that judges sometimes cite in making decisions, does not really exist. What passes for social consensus is often the acquiescence of people to already instituted legal statutes or social policies. As an example against social consensus, Johnson references a recent publication that demonstrates the rise of incest laws (prohibiting 1st cousin marriage) in the U.S. was more reflective of prejudicial attitudes towards immigrants and the poor than any widely-held popular belief.

Resolution 6: Be more open. Jason Baird Jackson reports on a large new Open Access Project in India. The National Folklore Support Center, will host fourteen Open Access Journals.

Resolving to tell people about some web happening? Leave a comment below or email for next week’s installment.