The article contextualizes the educational, political and social context in which the International Baccalaureate (IB) diploma programme was established and describes the place of social anthropology within the general aims of the diploma programme as a whole. The article then discusses the current diploma curriculum for social and cultural anthropology and the issues arising from this for the teaching and learning of anthropology in a global context, including teacher support and comparisons with other national pre-university educational qualifications. Some of the perceptions of the IB diploma among teachers, students and parents are also briefly discussed.
History, Practice and Future Challenges
A Civic Struggle to Defy an Uncontestable Power
This study is based on participant observation of a protest against the Mafia that occurred in Rome on 26 September 2009. First, this essay offers an analysis by using symbols and their meanings, which are illustrated through the 'pyramid of social protest'. Second, the framing and process of the protest are analysed. Two new concepts are presented: the culture of lawfulness frame and the implicit contested process. Third, this essay shows that defying the Mafia begins with individual motivation but ends with the collective motivation behind the decision to be an activist. This decision includes ethically oriented reasons rather than being based on a materialistically calculated reasoning. Finally, the struggle of anti-Mafia movement illuminates cultural anthropology through its desire for a progressive society in which strong symbolic interactionism among the activists play an important role.
An Essay on the Status of Socio-cultural Anthropology in the German-speaking Countries
In response to the fine initiative by Alexei Elfimov, the present essay discusses the status of socio-cultural anthropology in the German-speaking countries in shifting contexts of past and present. I will focus here on three main themes, namely, socio-cultural anthropology as seen by a wider non-academic public, its status and terminology within wider academic contexts, and the internal differentiations among anthropologists in the German language zone with their unequal access to the public.
Limits and Options for Epistemological Orientations
This article identifies what Sir Edmund Leach once called 'amongitis' as one of socio-cultural anthropology's major problems that make interdisciplinary dialogues on evidence-based epistemological topics difficult. Topics of wider and larger scale, however, can and should be addressed if anthropology brings out more fully its implicit epistemological strength of a dialogical relationship between objectivism and subjectivism. The current conditions of a globalizing world actually transform this possibility into a necessity. In order to face this need, a new realism is proposed that is capable of dealing with the conditions and challenges of a second modernity. Two ranges of epistemological sources are suggested that may inform such a new realism. One range is based in the traditions of Western philosophy, while the other is rooted outside the secularized or theological legacies of monotheism.
A critical assessment of a re-internationalized field
Patty Gray, Nikolai Vakhtin and Peter Schweitzer
Although Siberian ethnography was an open and international field at the turn of the twentieth century, from about 1930 until the late 1980s Siberia was for the most part closed to foreigners and therefore to Western ethnographers. This allowed Soviet ethnographers to establish a virtual monopoly on Siberian field sites. Soviet and Western anthropology developed during that period in relative isolation from one another, allowing methodologies and theoretical approaches to diverge. During glasnost' and after the collapse of the Soviet Union, the Siberian field was reopened and field studies were conducted by several Western ethnographers. The resulting encounter between Western and former Soviet ethnographers in the 1980s and 1990s produced a degree of cultural shock as well as new challenges and opportunities on both sides. This is an experiential account of the mood of these newly reunited colleagues at the turn of the twenty-first century.
Werner Krauss and Hans von Storch
Recent surveys show that the communication about climate change between science and the public is severely disturbed. In this article we discuss this problem in focusing on both regional climate services and other, local forms of knowledge. The authors suggest that climate science and its public services have to critically revise their own practices and to acknowledge other forms of knowledge about climate as constitutive. Based on approaches from geography and anthropology, the article first discusses the short history and "normal practices" of regional climate services and how they approach the public. Outlining the potentials and constraints of this concept, the article focuses on the friction, on "its openness to change as it rubs up against society" (Hulme 2007). The focus then shifts to local knowledge systems and how they deal with the challenges of a changing climate. In addition to the "extended peer review" as a new option for climate research in a post-normal setup, the authors discuss the possibility of an "extended knowledge basis," that is, the integration of different forms of climate knowledge with a special focus on regional populations.
Andreea Lazea and Felix Girke
Social and Cultural Anthropology. The Key Concepts. By Nigel Rapport and Joanna Overing, London, New York: Routledge (Key Guides), 2007, ISBN-10: 0415181569, ISBN-13: 978-0415181563.
Creativity and Cultural Improvisation. By Elizabeth Hallam and Tim Ingold (eds.). Oxford, New York: Berg (ASA Monographs 44), 2007, ISBN 978-184520-527-0.
Remembering a Frontrunner
In German academic Volkskunde of the 1970s, scholar Ina-Maria Greverus was a pioneer in several realms. As a woman and feminist, she challenged the discipline’s gender order, including its hidden gendered epistemology; as an early reader of international cultural anthropology, she transgressed nationalistically confined horizons, and her methodological openness created space for new formats that challenged false assumption of scientific objectivity and neutrality.
Claudette Kennedy, W. S. F. Pickering and Nick Allen
The late Mrs Claudette Kennedy was a niece of Mauss and a great niece of Durkheim. On 1 September 1992, Bill Pickering (WP) and Nick Allen (NA) – of the then recently formed British Centre for Durkheimian Studies at the Institute of Social and Cultural Anthropology, Oxford University – met Claudette Kennedy (CK) in her house in Oxford and recorded a conversation with her. She had certain firm memories of Emile Durkheim, her great uncle, but more of Marcel Mauss. In all probability, she was the only person then alive with such memories, especially those of Durkheim. Pierre Mauss might have had recollections of Marcel Mauss but his memory was said to be failing.
Ethnography between the Virtue of Patience and the Anxiety of Belatedness Once Coevalness Is Embraced
In view of this issue's focus on time and temporalities, I want to discuss a distinctive problem concerning the ethnographic representation of fieldwork experiences. Faced with increased time pressure to complete degree work and the present trend that emphasizes efficiency in graduate training, scholars are finding traditional ideals of temporality in research to be challenged as a professional standard of ethnography at the outset of their careers. To me, this compelling development in the current evolution of social and cultural anthropology needs detailed discussion in reassessing the norms of the long-established ethos of anthropological research.