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Video Surveillance in Portugal

Political Rhetoric at the Center of a Technological Project

Catarina Frois

This article gives a detailed account of the political processes and stages involved in the implementation of video surveillance devices in two major Portuguese cities, Oporto and Lisbon. It seeks to draw two main conclusions regarding the introduction of these systems in public areas and the developments that they have undergone over the period under analysis. The first is that installing these devices reflects a political response designed to provide a hasty solution to a social phenomenon—fear—that is largely subjective. The second is that the generalized perception as to the uncertainty of the effectiveness of these systems explains the lack of consistency and coordination in their implementation. The article concludes by discussing fear and insecurity in the context of concerns for a more efficient justice system.

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The Origins and Subjects of Fear for Siberians

Sociological Research in the Regions of Eastern and Western Siberia

Valentin G. Nemirovskiy and Anna V. Nemirovskaya

This paper analyzes feelings of insecurity and fear amongst the population of Siberian regions in the face of various perceived dangers, based on research conducted in the Krasnoiarsk and Altai Territories, Novosibirsk and Omsk Regions, and the Republics of Khakassiia and Buriatiia, in the context of the general Russian situation. Quantitative methods—frequency, correlation, and factor analysis on survey data obtained from formalized face-to-face interviews—are used to gain an understanding of what factors respondents feel are “ugrozhaiushchie zhiznedeiatel'nosti” (activities threatening to social life). Siberians feel especially vulnerable to gender- and age-related discrimination, as well as governmental abuse of power and the threats inherent in economic development: chronic poverty, environmental threats, officials' arbitrariness, and crime and law enforcement authorities themselves. They also feel threatened by the presence of migrant groups and social minorities. However, an internal locus of control reduces their fears of threats to social life activities.

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Dana-Ain Davis

Neoliberal values and ideology, which have broadly undermined social justice ideals, have been inserted into a range of public spheres both in the U.S.A. and internationally. Public higher education institutions have increasingly acquiesced to neoliberal strategies, which restrict access to public services, commodify the public sphere and challenge the legitimacy of progressive and liberal politics. This article explores some neoliberal practices at one public institution of higher education in the United States. I present three incidents that took place between 2000 and 2006 at a college that is part of a public State University system: a shift to disparagement of 'activism' in a college that had prided itself on its activist traditions; a confusion over the profitable marketability of Global Black Studies, in a context where political pressures diminished 'minority' perspectives in the interest of reasserting homogeneous 'Western civilisation'; and a partnership between this public college and a prestigious private university. In each case I explore my own response in terms of faculty governance, and how I developed new courses and pedagogies to open up these aspects of the operation of neoliberalism to critical examination by students. These incidents show how neoliberal practices create fear and feelings of vulnerability among faculty, especially faculty members of colour; they also show the importance of developing critical pedagogies to expose their assaults on social justice and equity.

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Without fear and reproach

The role-playing games community as a challenge to mainstream culture

Tat'iana Barchunova and Natal'ia Beletskaia

The article describes one of the most developed networks of intellectual youth in post-Soviet Russia. This network originated in science-fiction clubs and the 'Zarnitsa game' of the 1960s to 1980s. Yet unlike Zarnitsa games, which have been used at Soviet schools as an instrument of political mainstreaming, the current role-playing games community is opposing itself to mainstream politics and popular culture. The article approaches this network as a community of practice, which is constituted by three basic elements: learning, doing, and justification of meaning. Both leaders and rank-and-file members of the community justify their agency within the community through the concept of rule. It is the rule-governed community, which according to them, helps them to feel secure and fearless in a society that they see as devoid of any strict regulations. The article closes with an analysis of the inner and outer conflicts of the role-playing games community.

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Where Ethnographers Fear to Tread

The Counter-Influence of Ethnography on Christopher Kremmer's The Carpet Wars (2002) and Christina Lamb's The Sewing Circles of Herat (2002)

Corinne Fowler

Since travel writing predates ethnography, much research has centred on the influence of travel writing on ethnography (rather than the other way around). Ongoing debates over the crisis in anthropology mean that scholarly investigations of ethnography’s indebtedness to travel writing tend to be valued for their contribution to the crisis debate. Less attention has been paid to the question of counter-influence: the presence of ethnography in contemporary travel narratives about Afghanistan. My comparison of ethnographers’ and travellers’ accounts of Afghan games reveals that recent travel writing about Afghanistan relies heavily upon the long-established (and much maligned) textual practices, varieties of ethnography that have long since become outmoded and discredited. I hereby refer to pre-crisis modes of ethnography as ‘classical ethnographies’.1 Attending to the intertwining of travel writing and ethnography reveals the crucial relationship between travel writing about Afghanistan and the establishment of narrative authority to define and explain, in the words of Sir Alfred Lyall, ‘the unruly Afghan’ (quoted in Azoy 2003: 21), or to perpetuate what I shall describe as the ‘warlike Afghan’ thesis.

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Blurred memories

War and disaster in a Buddhist Sinhala village

Mara Benadusi

like a silent enemy into the core of the enduring process of “securitization of fear” ( Hyndman 2007 ) in Sri Lanka. Yet, however much the politics of memory tends to cloud matters, the article shows that it never goes uncontested, as long as subjects

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Mapping Time, Living Space

Comment and Reply

Stephan Feuchtwang and Susan Bayly

The Bad, Fear and Blame? Comment on Bayly’s Mapping Time, Living Space Stephan Feuchtwang

Reply Susan Bayly

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Technological Animism

The Uncanny Personhood of Humanoid Machines

Kathleen Richardson

the robots I have studied are research platforms (meaning they are experimental prototypes rather than commercial objects), there is still fear among scientists that, should their robots become commercially available, the belief that robots are

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The End of the European Honeymoon?

Refugees, Resentment and the Clash of Solidarities

Siobhan Kattago

singularly incapable of overcoming populist resentment towards foreigners (Arendt, Fassin, Ticktin). Disenchantment with government, fear of terrorism and resentment towards foreigners weaken European solidarity at a time when it is needed most. At the very

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Performing humanitarian militarism

Public security and the military in Brazil

Stephanie Savell

someone insults us,” he said, “we avoid reacting, because everyone’s eyes are on the army.” Because soldiers fear being associated with the past military dictatorship, they are conscious to avoid acting with abuse. Santos’s colleague, listening to our