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Vicos as Cold War Strategy

Anthropology, Peasants and 'Community Development'

Eric B. Ross

This article examines how anthropology's emphasis on the traditional values of peasants reflected the general precepts of 'modernization theory', the dominant development discourse of the Cold War era. It explores how such ideas lent credibility to the U.S. strategy of 'community development' as a central part of its response to radical rural change. Special attention is paid to the Cornell-Peru Project at Vicos in the Peruvian highlands, which attained legendary status as a case of applied anthropology, but is here examined in relationship to the strategies of the U.S. power elite and Cold War government policies.

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‘Isteach chun an Oileáin’

Reflections on Community Mapping

Liam Campbell and Iain Mackinnon

Since 2007 the Irish government have prevented the fisher-men of the Donegal islands of Arranmore, Tory and Inishbofin from engaging in their generations-old drift-net salmon fishery. We have been involved in supporting the islanders as they organise themselves to find ways to oppose the ban. In this dialogue we reflect on some aspects of our involvement.

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Inventing Eco-Cycle

A Social Enterprise Approach to Sustainability Education

Sandy Smith-Nonini

This article discusses lessons learned from a social enterprise project supporting sustainability education in central North Carolina (U.S.A.). Since 2011, Eco-Cycle,1 a retail shop featuring creative-reuse has provided support for a community meeting space that offers weekly environmental education workshops. Many approaches to social justice-oriented green initiatives in the United States emulate urban agriculture models and tend to be grant-dependent in early years, only achieving economic sustainability with difficulty. In contrast, our non-profit co-op of upcycler crafters and vintage vendors grew out of production and marketing of upcycled rain barrels, based on a social enterprise approach rather than a traditional model. I discuss the stepping-stones to this venture, which originated through a neighbourhood energy conservation initiative, followed by alliance-building with non-profits to promote green job creation. I relate the complications and surprising forms of synergism emerging from the social enterprise approach to social theory on cooperatives and community-based development models.

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'Fire from Above, Fire from Below'

Health, Justice and the Persistence of the Sacred

James R. Cochrane

The essay refers to a concern for social justice in the origins of public health, borne in part by religious commitments, and to more recent expressions of a similar concern in debates about health equity. Equity, moreover, is affected by discursive power relations (dominant/hegemonic versus local/suppressed), which are discussed in relation to current research in the African Religious Health Assets Programme on the interaction of particular 'healthworlds' (a conceptual innovation) that shape the choices and behaviour of health-seekers. Two background theoretical positions guide the argument: Amartya Sen's claim that development is linked to freedom (including religious freedom); and, building on Sen's and Martha Nussbaum's human capabilities theory, an asset-based community approach to the building or reconstruction of public health systems. On this basis, it is argued that health systems and health interventions are just to the extent that they mediate between the necessary leadership or polity from 'above' (techné) and the experience and wisdom (métis) of those who are 'below', taking into account the asymmetries of power that this equation represents. Because difference and diversity are so often expressed in what we might reasonably call 'religious' terms, I specifically emphasize the continuing persistence of religion and, hence, the importance of accounting for its pertinence in social theory generally, and in relation to discourses of health and justice in the African context specifically. Acknowledging the ambiguities of religion, I nevertheless argue that an appreciative alignment between public health systems and religious or faith-based initiatives in health promotion, prevention and care is crucial to sustainable and just health systems in Africa.

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ESRC seminar series

Trans-sectoral partnerships, sustainability research and the oil and gas industry in Russia

Emma Wilson

Notes on Seminar 1: ‘Sustainable Community Development, Social Impact Assessment and Anthropological Expert Review’ (26 November 2004, Scott Polar Research Institute, Cambridge) and Seminar 2: ‘A Sustainable Future for Sakhalin Island?’ (9 March 2005, Leicester University)

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Jewish Schools in a Changing Europe

Old and New Challenges

Marcelo Dimentstein

This paper is based on the outcomes of a think tank on formal Jewish education in Europe, organized by the JDC International Centre for Community Development, in October 2010, Oxford, England and attended by key professionals in the field across Europe. If Jewish education is thriving in the major centers of Jewish life across the continent, there are still a number of issues and dilemmas that remain undiscussed by the professionals and educators working in Europe. Also, this paper stresses the need for Jewish schools to start profiting from, at all levels, an intra- European dialogue.