The UCL Department of Anthropology has a new position, a lectureship in Digital Anthropology. Open to anyone with a strong ethnographic foundation to their research into the digital. Research areas can include robotics, artificial intelligence, the anthropology of data, social media, consumption, or other emerging topics within the field. For further details please click here or email Haidy Geismar for further details.
Tag Archives | Digital Anthropology
Hannah Knox, UCL Anthropology
When I was an undergraduate at the University of Manchester in the late 1990s I recall being introduced by John Gledhill to something called ‘Experience Rich Anthropology’. Established by the anthropology department at the University of Ken, the ERA project was an early attempt to use the possibilities of new media technologies to open up anthropology to new audiences, and to present anthropological knowledge in new ways. The site is still available to view here:
It is remarkable then, that in the ensuing 20 years, anthropologists have been rather slow to embrace the possibilities of digital media. Particularly now, when as a matter of course most anthropologists carry around powerful digital research tools in their pockets (smart phones which contain a camera, sound recorder, GPS locator, mapping tools, access to mappable social networks), we still seem remarkably wedded to the form of the research monograph or written journal paper that perhaps includes a few well chosen photographs from our field sites.…
Zachary Hecht, UCL Digital Anthropology
I must admit, this review has been a long time coming. I was given Digital Materialities and asked to review it many months ago. I proceeded to read it immediately, but writing the review, well not so immediately. At the time, I had been in the process of exams and dissertation fieldwork. Several of the book’s chapters were very useful while I was working through concepts for my own work. Since reading this book, I have moved to another country and read several other books and articles. Yet, importantly, I had been given a hard copy of the book and it managed to make it across the ocean with me—sitting in my suitcase, underneath my belongings, until I finally got around to unpacking.…
Haidy Geismar, UCL
The movement towards open access has continued to gain momentum in the social sciences, and in anthropology, with important new journals such as Hau; and new movements to develop alternative publishing collectives afoot. I have just stepped down as editor of the Journal of Material Culture where we are moving a little slower. We have committed to ensuring that there is at least one open access article per issue, and Sage has a very generous Green archiving policy which allows the accepted version of an article to be made available immediately. However, Sage owns both the title and the back issues of the journal which makes a transition to fully open access more of a decision to form a completely new title.…
Haidy Geismar, UCL
I’ve been working on a paper for a workshop on “Transforming data: drawing otherness into data debates” next week. I will be talking about one of my current research projects, Te Ara Wairua – Pathways of the Intangible. In collaboration with Kura Puke and Stuart Foster of Massey University and Te Matahiapo Research Organization in Aotearoa New Zealand we have been exploring how digital technologies can connect to a Maori Korowai (cloak) held currently in the UCL Ethnography Collections.
Together we are developing a critical perspective on the ways in which digital technologies can, or cannot, be used to connect communities to far away collections. We all have different interests and investments in the project, and these have generated different research questions.…
Elad Ben Elul, UCL Digital Anthropology and the Album People, Tel Aviv
(An earlier version of this article was published in Interactions.)
Applied anthropology is becoming increasingly visible and the rise of digital anthropology means cultural research is employed for the development and marketing of technology. However, applied anthropology can also be used as an ongoing research tool for service design as an organic part of the work process. This post examines this option by looking at an enterprise called “The Album People”.
The Album People is a London-based service specializing in digital archiving and the preservation of domestic memories. The service was designed as a direct result of a Masters thesis conducted in UCL’s Digital Anthropology department about the future of the family photo album.
Luana Kaderabek, UCL Digital Anthropology
This documentary has been created as part of the Digital Anthropology (MSc) program at UCL. The filmmaking module, led by the visual anthropologists Vikram Jayanti and Richard Curling, challenges anthropologists to incorporate digital media as a research tool in their ethnographies.
The Minstrel has been nominated one of the three best films in the autumn/winter class in 2012. It is about Ozan Figani’s life, a hairdresser originally from Turkey, Anatolia, who owns a traditional Salon in East London. Little by little he starts to reveal his true first job (music and poem writing).
He is an Alevi. In Turkey, Alevism (considered by many to be a religion similar to Buddhism or a simple way of living) is a popular belief embedded in many political conflicts.…
Danny Miller, UCL
Although this site was started as a collaboration between Haidy in New York and Danny in London, from the beginning we were hoping to attract postings from a global interest in this genre of academic work. We do pretty well in this regard, with contributions from academics, students and others from many different countries, but we would still be happier if there was more coming from Brazil, West Africa, South and East Asia. By the same token we see this and other similar academic blogs as attempts to open up information about new academic and related work to as wide an audience as possible. Within which one of the key attributes of online posting is simply that it is free.…