anthropology

Archaeology, Education, and American Indian Initiatives Paid Internships at the Crow Canyon Archaeological Center Due: March 1st, 2017.

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Crow Canyon Archaeological Center – Archaeology, Education, and American Indian Initiatives Paid Internships
 
Crow Canyon Archaeological Center is currently accepting applications (application deadline is March 1st, 2017) for archaeology, education, and American Indian Initiatives internships. We are seeking advanced undergraduate or graduate students in archaeology, anthropology, Native American studies, or other related fields to assist with archaeological field and lab work or educational programming related to the archaeology and anthropology of the Southwest. We are especially interested in pursuing Indigenous and Public Anthropology projects and programs, and seek to cultivate interns that can contribute to this vision. If you know of anyone that might be interested in these paid internships please pass the contact information and details along to them.

More information and application materials can be found at: http://www.crowcanyon.org/index.php/internships

 

Museum of Anthropology: December 2016

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Coming Soon: Gallery of Northwest Coast Masterworks
In case you missed our big news last month, MOA will soon be home to a significant collection of historical and contemporary Indigenous artworks and a new Gallery of Northwest Coast Masterworks. The anonymous donation of more than 200 pieces of Indigenous art, worth an estimated $7 million, is believed to be the largest collection of Northwest Coast First Nations art to return to B.C. in recent decades.

Work on the new gallery has already begun, and it is scheduled to open in June. We’re incredibly excited by this development, and we invite you to learn more about it on our website. You can see a few of the donated objects above, or take a moment to view our Masterworks photo gallery on Flickr. 

Make Your Own Ceramic Art with MOA’s Artist in Residence
Javier Ramirez, a highly acclaimed ceramic artist from Mexico, is in residence at MOA until December 15. Drop by and visit him as he creates a Tree of Life sculpture for our collection. Or better yet, you can join Javier this Saturday for a rare chance to sculpt your own ceramic creations and have them fired in a dugout, wood-burning kiln on MOA’s grounds. Learn more and get tickets.
Unique Gifts Galore at our Winter Art Market
If you’re searching for thoughtful gifts for friends and family, you’ll find plenty of ideas at our annual Winter Art Market. Our wonderful staff at the MOA Shop have gathered up their favourite seasonal items and stocked up on your favourite gifts, such as this stunning shirt by Nuxalk artist Danika Naccarella, the winner of our t-shirt contest this year. The Winter Art Market runs at the MOA Shop until December 24. 
Holiday Hours
Gather your family up and bring them to MOA this holiday season for a tour, or simply take in one of our temporary exhibitions. We’re open our regular hours, with a few exceptions:
  • December 24: 10 am – 2:30 pm
  • December 25: Closed
  • December 31: 10 am – 2:30 pm
Calendar of Events

 

Call for Participants – Paths to Sustainability: Creating Connection through Place-based Indigenous Knowledge

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Call for Participants

Paths to Sustainability: Creating Connection through Place-based Indigenous Knowledge

Seeking people to participate in a Vancouver-area research project on Indigenous world view, Place-based education and the practice of sustainability. This is for a research study conducted by Celia Brauer, a Graduate Student in Socio-cultural Anthropology at the University of British Columbia.

Participants must be available: Aug 2016 – Nov 2016 for 5, 5 hour Sessions, on weekend afternoons.

Plus: pre-and post-interview sessions of about 2 hours.

Participants must be 19 years or over and able-bodied. They should be interested in the subject matter and follow the whole course of educational sessions, plus all the interviews: approx. 25 hours total.

Contact Information: Co-Investigator: Celia Brauer: celiabrauer@alumni.ubc.ca

 

Upcoming Doctoral Defenses

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Wednesday, 13 April 2016 – 12:30pm – Room 200

Chris A Arnett
Department: Anthropology
Rock Art of Nlaka’pamux: Indigenous Theory and Practice on the British Columbia Plateau

Wednesday, 25 May 2016 – 12:30pm – Room 200

Cathrena Narcisse
Department: Anthropology
Indigenous Perspectives on the Outstanding Land Issue in British Columbia: “We deny their right to it”

Job – Assistant Professor, Sociocultural Anthropology (tenure-track)

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The Department of Anthropology in collaboration with the Curriculum in Global Studies at The University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill invites applications for a tenure-track, nine-month faculty position in  We seek applicants with a strong research and teaching portfolio with a special focus on migration issues. Areas of interest could include transnationalism, immigration and migration, human rights, migration and the US South, refugees, politics, health and migration, border cultures, and diasporic peoples. The geographic area of specialization is open. A willingness to engage students in local ethnographic fieldwork or internship projects and an interest in the professional practice of anthropology beyond the academy are encouraged. The successful applicant will divide curriculum responsibilities evenly between The Department of Anthropology and The Curriculum in Global Studies with regular responsibility for a graduate level course on migration for the interdisciplinary Global Studies MA program.
A PhD in Anthropology is required by the time of appointment July 1, 2016. 
Candidates must have an active, ethnographic research program and demonstrated potential, in the form of publications and other scholarly activity. Candidates must be excellent teachers, willing to work closely with Global Studies graduate students, and prepared to actively contribute to the development of Global Studies.
Applicants should submit a cover letter, curriculum vitae, and reference list to: http://unc.peopleadmin.com/postings/83713. Please provide a list of four professional references including the names, titles, email addresses and phone numbers.  Application review will begin on November 1, 2015.
 http://careercenter.aaanet.org/jobs/7492739/assistant-professor

The Wixaritari and the Heart of the World, 7 pm, Sep. 29, 2015

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Tuesday, September 29: The Wixaritari and the Heart of the World
Join MOA Director Dr. Anthony Shelton for a special lecture on The Wixaritari (Huichol). The Wixaritari, who live in the mountainous, isolated parts of northwest Mexico, have retained a unique cosmology despite continuous threats to despoil their land and sacred sites. Their homeland was created through the sacrifice of their ancestral deities who became transformed into the land, mountains, seas and plant and animal forms that surround them. This presentation will open a glimpse into this world and describe some of their techniques and philosophy which enables them to see what is invisible to others.

Tuesday, September 29 at 7pm
UBC Museum of Anthropology

Source: The Talking Stick: News and Information from the First Nations Longhouse, September 15, 2015

Indigenous greens in East Africa capturing attention for nutritional and environmental benefits

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The rise of Africa’s super vegetables
Long overlooked in parts of Africa, indigenous greens are now capturing attention for their nutritional and environmental benefits.

Rachel Cernansky
09 June 2015

7Abukutsa and student nightshade_WEB

When Abukutsa pursued her PhD in the 1990s, she was told that indigenous vegetables were not important enough to be the focus of a research project. Now, scientists around the world are studying their benefits and Abukutsa mentors several students working on native plants.

One lunchtime in early March, tables at Nairobi’s K’Osewe restaurant are packed. The waiting staff run back and forth from the kitchen, bringing out steaming plates of deep-green African nightshade, vibrant amaranth stew and the sautéed leaves of cowpeas. The restaurant is known as the best place to come for a helping of Kenya’s traditional leafy green vegetables, which are increasingly showing up on menus across the city.

Just a few years ago, many of those plates would have been filled with staples such as collard greens or kale — which were introduced to Africa from Europe a little over a century ago. In Nairobi, indigenous vegetables were once sold almost exclusively at hard-to-find specialized markets; and although these plants have been favoured by some rural populations in Africa, they were largely ignored by seed companies and researchers, so they lagged behind commercial crops in terms of productivity and sometimes quality.

Now, indigenous vegetables are in vogue. They fill shelves at large supermarkets even in Nairobi, and seed companies are breeding more of the traditional varieties every year. Kenyan farmers increased the area planted with such greens by 25% between 2011 and 2013. As people throughout East Africa have recognized the vegetables’ benefits, demand for the crops has boomed.

Recipes for African super vegetables
This is welcome news for agricultural researchers and nutritional experts, who argue that indigenous vegetables have a host of desirable traits: many of them are richer in protein, vitamins, iron and other nutrients than popular non-native crops such as kale, and they are better able to endure droughts and pests. This makes the traditional varieties a potent weapon against dietary deficiencies. “In Africa, malnutrition is such a problem. We want to see indigenous vegetables play a role,” says Mary Abukutsa-Onyango, a horticultural researcher at Jomo Kenyatta University of Agriculture and Technology in Juja, Kenya, who is a major proponent of the crops.

Scientists in Africa and elsewhere are now ramping up studies of indigenous vegetables to tap their health benefits and improve them through breeding experiments. The hope is that such efforts can make traditional varieties even more popular with farmers and consumers. But that carries its own risk: as indigenous vegetables become more widespread, researchers seeking faster-growing crops may inadvertently breed out disease resistance or some of the other beneficial traits that made these plants so desirable in the first place.

“It is important that when we promote a specific crop, that we try to come up with different varieties,” says Andreas Ebert, gene-bank manager at the World Vegetable Center (AVRDC), an agricultural-research organization based in Shanhua, Taiwan. If the increasing popularity of these vegetables limits choices, he says, “the major benefits we are currently seeing will be lost”.

Protein from plants
For Abukutsa, indigenous vegetables bring back memories of her childhood. Cow’s milk, eggs and some fish made her ill, so doctors advised her to avoid all animal protein. Instead, the women in her family made tasty dishes out of the green vegetables that grew like weeds around her house. Her mother often cooked the teardrop-shaped leaves of African nightshade (Solanum scabrum), as well as dishes of slimy jute mallow (Corchorus olitorius) and the greens of cowpeas, known elsewhere as black-eyed peas (Vigna unguiculata). One grandmother always cooked pumpkin leaves (Cucurbita moschata) with peanut or sesame paste. Abukutsa relished them all and ate the greens with ugali, a polenta-like dish common in East Africa.

She chose to pursue a career in agriculture because she wanted to “unravel the potential hidden in African indigenous vegetables”, she says. Now, she is considered a leader across Africa, and increasingly around the world, in a robust, rapidly growing field. “She’s almost like the mother of indigenous vegetables in Kenya,” says Jane Ambuko, head of horticulture at the University of Nairobi.

Abukutsa started out in the early 1990s, surveying and collecting Kenya’s indigenous plants to investigate the viability of the seeds that farmers were using. In the decades since, she has come to focus mainly on the vegetables’ nutritional properties.
Today, she is far from alone. The AVRDC has a dedicated research and breeding programme at its office in Arusha, Tanzania, and the Kenya Agricultural and Livestock Research Organization in Nairobi does similar work. Other health and agriculture organizations in both East and West Africa focus on boosting consumer use and improving the viability and yield of these crops. That fits into a global trend emphasizing bioregional foods — using crops that are well adapted for a given climate and environment, rather than foreign plants that tend to be less nutritious and require extra water or fertilizers.

Most of the indigenous vegetables being studied in East Africa are leafy greens, almost all deep green in colour and often fairly bitter. Kenyans especially love African nightshade and amaranth leaves (Amaranthus sp.). Spider plant (Cleome gynandra), one of Abukutsa’s favourites for its sour taste, grows wild in East Africa as well as South Asia. Jute mallow has a texture that people love or hate. It turns slimy when cooked — much like okra. Ebert says that moringa (Moringa oleifera) is not only one of the most healthful of the indigenous vegetables — both nutritionally and medicinally — but it is also common in many countries around the world.

Research by Abukutsa and others shows that amaranth greens, spider plant and African nightshade pack substantial amounts of protein and iron — in many cases, more than kale and cabbage1. These vegetables are generally rich in calcium and folate as well as vitamins A, C and E (ref. 2).

In recent years, Abukutsa has been studying how to maximize nutritional benefits using different cooking methods. Compared with raw vegetables, boiled and fried greens contain much more usable iron3 and could help to combat the high rates of anaemia in parts of East Africa. They can also be important sources of protein, she says. “Some people just live on vegetables, and they cannot maybe afford meat.”

Abukutsa is currently studying the antioxidant activity of indigenous vegetables, as well as how resilient they are to the effects of climate change. Most of the traditional varieties are ready for harvest much faster than non-native crops, so they could be promising options if the rainy seasons become more erratic — one of the predicted outcomes of global warming. Slenderleaf (Crotolaria sp.) is particularly hardy during drought because it quickly establishes its taproot. “If we have a short rain because of climate change, it can survive,” she says. She is working with other research partners to select vegetables with increased tolerance for variations in rainfall and temperature. Read More…