Around the Web Digest: Week of May 30

This week was a blast, especially April Fool’s Day. Hopefully, you didn’t miss our very own Twainian satire, “Counterpoint: Good Americans should pay their debts, thank Sallie Mae,” or the Buzzfeedian listicle, “11 Cutting-Edge Thinkers That Anthropologists Should Be Paying Attention to Right Now!” Thank you all for sharing the latter – it was great fun to put together. If you sent me an angry email that was quickly followed up by an apology, or an angry tweet that was quickly deleted, don’t worry – you weren’t the only one. As usual, if you have any links or blogs that you want me to share, send them my way at or on Twitter @dtpowis.

Here’s what you missed this week:

If you have time for one great article out of this list, I highly recommend you read Alexei Yurchak’s fantastic piece on Anthropoliteia. An anonymous yet recognizable, polite yet intimidating, Russian yet characteristically un-Russian military force is in Crimea. This is “non-occupation.” (Anthropoliteia)

For those tuning in or unable to keep up with the crisis in Ukraine, Allegra has just published an incredibly helpful timeline of events. (Allegra Lab)

Allegra Lab and Anthropoliteia have published the second installment of their virtual roundtable on Ukraine. (Allegra Lab/Anthropoliteia)

How might we move from being “participant-absorbers” to “participant-engagers?” (Anthropology News)

Emily Martin has written an engaging and thoughtful review of the newest book on my Amazon Wishlist: S. Lochlann Jain’s Malignant: How Cancer Becomes Us. (Public Books)

Amy Cooper has just written a review of Elizabeth F.S. Roberts’ God’s Laboratory: Assisted Reproduction in the Andes, a book that “examines how science and spirituality are connected in the practice of in vitro fertilization (IVF) in Ecuador.” (Somatosphere)

And Elizabeth F.S. Roberts has written the latest installment of Commonplaces on the petri dish. (Somatosphere)

There’s a new issue of The Appendix, the theme of which is Bodies. (The Appendix)

Lamilly, the more realistic Barbie alternative that is really aimed at parents rather than kids, will probably tank. (Savage Minds)

These are the things that distinguish a black woman’s struggle for reproductive rights from that of white women. (For Harriet)

Dan Snyder (owner of the Washington R******s) is not to be outdone. Look at the lengths that fans of the Cleveland Indians are willing to go to make sure you know: IT’S NOT RACIST. (Scene Magazine)

Daniel Murphy, second baseman for the New York Mets, took not one but TWO days of paternity leave. Naturally, sports radio had to question his masculinity. (Mother Jones)

Marie-Pierre Renaud continues to explore the concept of the “fake” geek girl. (The Geek Anthropologist)

If you’ve missed the latest assault on the National Science Foundation, pay attention: the newest manifestation threatens to decentralize funding and then reduce funding for the social and behavioral sciences to nil. (Chronicle of Higher Education)

Some people would like to think that the inescapable debt of higher education is the fault of those that would choose silly majors like anthropology. In the latest installment of the Anthropologies Project issue on student debt, Daniel Souleles argues that the problem is much bigger than one of individual choice. (Savage Minds)

It turns out that the next big thing in library science is the adoption of anthropological research methods. (#UKAnthroLib)

If media coverage is an indicator, it really seems that that field of “Business Insights” (a.k.a. corporate ethnography) is starting to boom. Here’s how Wells Fargo used ethnographers to their advantage. (MIT Sloan Management Review)

Anthropologists join an Ebola outbreak team to provide a buffer between NGOs and the communities they serve. (NPR: Oregon Public Broadcasting)

Is it a public health concern that there are more cell phones than toilets? Well maybe, but according to Jen Barr, comparing the two is a little unfair. (PopAnth)

It looks like National Geographic knows how to take a hint: They’ve pulled their trainwreck of a show, Nazi War Diggers. (New York Times)

The FBI seized thousands of artifacts that were collected over eight decades from a home in Waldron, Indiana. (USA Today)

All I know is, I’m already thinking of the trailer for my first book. No, it doesn’t matter that I have no idea what my first book will be on. Yes, trailer. (Savage Minds)

Dick Powis

Dick Powis is a PhD Candidate in Anthropology at Washington University in St. Louis, and is also pursuing a Graduate Certificate in Women, Gender, and Sexuality Studies. His research interests include men and childbirth, prenatal screening technologies, and reproductive health in urban settings in Senegal. Read more at