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Coincidences as connections

“Reading across” disciplines while “reading from” anthropology

Jane K. Cowan

What makes our projects “anthropological”? What is that anthropological twist that we bring and what does it add to any given empirical or substantive field? These are the key questions that the editors of Focaal asked me to consider; intrinsically compelling, they hooked me into adding my own contribution to this Forum topic. The questions intrigue me because I see myself both as a keen advocate of certain ways of doing interdisciplinarity, and as deeply grounded in the history, practice, and thinking of my own discipline of anthropology. I start my reflection from the interdisciplinary end, via the theme of serendipity; somehow, these are linked.