I woke up this morning feeling heavy with sadness. Alton Sterling was killed by police in Baton Rouge, Louisiana. A day after Philando Castile was murdered in Falcon Heights, Minnesota by the police. Social media has become a never ending stream of images and text that position black bodies as a moral panic, an echo chamber of violence. The debates over the structures of racism and the police have reached a national arena; we as anthropologists can no longer stand silent.
Instead of a normal Around the Web Digest, I offer readings by anthropologists and critics about the role of the field in dismantling structures of oppression.
Cultural Anthropology offers many readings from a variety of scholars on the intersectionality of Black life in America. Pieces on the experiences of living in constant violence from the state, survival strategies, gendered aspects of policing, international perspectives, and the role of systemic economic disenfranchisement.
Anthropod interviews Yarimar Bonilla, Laurence Ralph, and Mark Auslander on their views of recent #Blacklivesmatter protests.
Shay Akil on Decolonize All The Things criticizes anthropology on it complacency on anti-blackness in academia. Our research and theory will do nothing if it is not translated into practice.
In 2014, we witnessed anthropology face new crossroads in how we contribute to everyday life with coalitions being built across Gaza and Ferguson. I wonder where our discipline stands today with state violence still encroaching in marginalized communities and counter-movements against Black Lives Matter movements.
Savage Minds has written extensively on the role of racism and anthropology. I compile a list here to better read through.
- Making Black Lives Matter: Reflections on the Declaration and the Movement (Introduction Part I)
- Making Black Lives Matter: Reflections on the Declaration and the Movement (Introduction Part II)
- On Being Fed Up: Blackness, Resistance, and the Death of Michael Brown – [An Invited Post]
- Thinking about Michael Brown and the African Burial Ground
- A Call to Action: Fieldnotes on Bringing the Black Lives Matter Movement Home
- Reclaiming Humanity for Black Lives in Jamaica
- A Day of Action: Justice for Black Women and Girls on May 21st, 2015
- Getting Free in Cleveland
- #BlackLivesMatter and #AAA2014: Die-In, Section Assembly Motion, and the ABA Statement Against Police Violence and Anti-Black Practices
- From #EbolaBeGone to #BlackLivesMatter: Anthropology, misrecognition, and the racial politics of crisis
- Reflections on the AAA Die-in as a Symbolic Space of Social Death
- Nothing like #Ferguson to Reveal those Closeted Racists (in Anthropology)
- Ferguson: Anthropologists Speak Out
- Using George Zimmerman as an object lesson in the anthropology of policing
- I Will Not Call Her Name: An Ethno-poem on Racial and Gendered Violence
Not only do anthropologists research these communities, I believe we have the moral responsibility to practice informed activism for these communities in order to heal.
I will return next week with a regularly scheduled digest.
Peace and Love,