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Asale Angel-Ajani, Carolyn J. Dean, and Meg McLagan

Witnessing: virtual conversations In April and May 2019, we (this issue's editors) held two virtual conversations with three scholars who have made important contributions to the study of witnessing. Asale Angel-Ajani is an anthropologist

Open access

Committee as Witness

Ethics Review as a Technology of Collective Attestation

Rachel Douglas-Jones

this special issue point out, witnessing is a matter of public concern, and affective power. Where reference to it is present, questions arise about who may witness, what qualities they must have, for whom they see, and the technologies their

Open access

Witnessing and Testimony as Event

Israeli NGOs, Palestinian Witnesses, and the Undoing of Human Rights Bureaucracy

Omri Grinberg

family – Palestinians from a village near Nablus, in the north-east area of the Israel-occupied West Bank. The incident that was to be documented, and that the brothers were witnesses to, had occurred the night before: Jewish Israelis from a nearby

Open access


For a Synaesthetics of Seeing

Naisargi N. Dave

as hungry, just as empty. —Ocean Vuong, On Earth We're Briefly Gorgeous Each of the articles in this collection on the politics and ethics of witnessing shares a vital and vitalizing ambivalence about witnessing's promise. Beginning with Chua

Open access

Liana Chua and Omri Grinberg

‘My responsibility is to tell the truth’ On 27 September 2018, psychology professor Christine Blasey Ford stood before the United States Senate Judiciary Committee as a witness in a case that polarized the nation. Ford had alleged that

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Ethnographic witnessing

Or, hope is the first anthropological emotion

Carole McGranahan

part of my life shifted, one aspect remained constant: the emails continued. Each week, and sometimes more than once, I received a request to serve as an expert witness in US political asylum cases for Nepali and Tibetan applicants. This is work I

Open access

Witnessing the Unseen

Extinction, Spirits, and Anthropological Responsibility

Liana Chua

Unveiling the theme for its 2020 Annual Meeting, the American Anthropological Association announced: ‘Truth and Responsibility’ is a call to reimagine anthropology to meet the demands of the present moment. The imperative to bear witness, take

Free access

Natalie Clark

previously published 1 as part of my accountability to the stories I have heard and witnessed in my work with Indigenous girls, and the spaces and sites of truth-telling in which my writing is mobilized including the political, the theoretical, and the

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Imagining Alternative Spaces

<em>Re-searching</em> Sexualized Violence with Indigenous Girls in Canada

Anna Chadwick

“Sisters Rising” is an Indigenous-led, community-based research study focused on Indigenous teachings related to sovereignty and gender wellbeing. In this article, I reflect on the outcomes of re-searching sexualized violence with Indigenous girls involved with “Sisters Rising” in remote communities in northern British Columbia, Canada. Through an emergent methodology that draws from Indigenous and borderland feminisms to conduct arts- and land-based workshops with girls and community members, I seek to unsettle my relationships to the communities with which I work, and the land on which I work. I look to arts-based methods and witnessing to disrupt traditional hegemonic discourses of settler colonialism. I reflect on how (re)storying spaces requires witnessing that incorporates (self-)critical engagement that destabilizes certainty. This position is a critical space in which to unsettle conceptual and physical geographies and envision alternative spaces where Indigenous girls are seen and heard with dignity and respect.

Open access

Weapons for Witnessing

American Street Preaching and the Rhythms of War

Kyle Byron

witnessing is “the plainest, most concentrated method for revealing and transmitting the Word of God, one in which language is intensified, focused, and virtually shot at the unwashed listener.” Likewise, John Fletcher (2003: 117) describes street preaching