In Fall of 2017, after a decade as founding and ongoing director of the university-wide NYU Council for the Study of Disability, anthropology professor Faye Ginsburg (and co-director Mara Mills (Associate Professor, Media, Culture & Communication) received Provostial Funding to launch the new Center for Disability Studies (CDS). We are really excited to have not only a strong inter-disciplinary and cutting-edge initiative, but also to bring this important field into the center of anthropological study, as Ginsburg and Rayna Rapp argued in a groundbreaking article in 2013. http://www.annualreviews.org/doi/full/10.1146/annurev-anthro-092412-155502
The Center for Disability Studies is discussed below in this short piece. https://steinhardt.nyu.edu/news/2017/9/22/NYUs_Incubator_for_Disability_Research_and_Activism
Congratulations to Sonia Das, whose monograph Linguistic Rivalries: Tamil Migrants and Anglo-Franco Conflicts (Oxford University Press 2016) was awared the Edward Sapir Book Prize Honorable Mention at this year’s American Anthropological Association conference. For more information about Sonia’s research, please check out her faculty profile.
Without congressional action, the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program will expire on March 5, 2018. We do not know what the results of congressional debate will be for DACA or how these will influence other immigration issues and statuses. The Anthropology Department’s goal is to support you during this uncertain time. NYU will continue to support undocumented students, staff and faculty. If you are or someone close to you is undocumented or have DACA or temporary protected status, please know that there are many things you can do before March. The following link provides practical steps you can take as well as connections to NYU immigrant defense initiative which can help with legal advice and referrals (http://as.nyu.edu/anthropology/undergraduate/resources/daca-students.html). NYU provides additional information and resources for students here. We want to remind you during these disconcerting times that you are a valued member of our community.
Associate Professor Jane Anderson publishes the Routledge Companion in Cultural Property edited with Haidy Geismar. And includes several pieces by NYU faculty and students including Fred Myers, Lee Douglas and Sandra Rozental. Congratulations Jane!
Congratulations to Ph.D candidate Alex DeCasien! Her 2nd year qualification paper was recently published, with Professors James Higham and Scott Williams as co-authors. The paper’s research found that “those [non human primates] who munched on fruit instead of leaves had 25 percent more brain tissue, even when controlling for body size and species relatedness” (NPR).
The research generated quite a bit of media attention in publications including Science, the BBC, Scientific American, New Scientist, The Guardian, and The Smithsonian.
NPR recently covered two of Professor Randall White’s new articles on the discovery of 38,000 year old rock engravings, which is older “than the famous images at both Lascaux and Chauvet caves.”
Read NPR’s coverage of Prof. White’s findings, here.
On Saturday, February 4th, 2017, several students from the Department led by Professor Jerome Whitington, participated in a Data Rescue event designed to archive and protect several websites on climate change, environmental data, and energy usage that could be threatened by our current Trump administration. Below is a statement from Professor Whitington detailing the success of the event:
“[The event] went off extremely well – about 160 people were involved, we archived a lot of federal websites and data especially from the Dept of Energy and Dept of Interior, and some other important work as well.It’s pretty heartening to see so many people engaged with environmental information and regulatory systems to such a degree of detail. Notably, we hosted a meeting among some key librarians around the country. It seems university librarians have been discussing a plan to systematically archive government data for about two decades, and some work has been done but there has never been a push to actually get it running. Due to the popular demand for this, there is now a movement for big libraries to create trusted data reserves linked in with their indexing systems. If this comes online it will be a very big win for us.”
The event was also covered extensively in the press. You can read articles about it here, here, here, and here.
“An international team of anthropologists has uncovered a 38,000-year-old engraved image in a southwestern French rockshelter—a finding that marks some of the earliest known graphic imagery found in Western Eurasia.” Professor Randall White, of the NYU Department of Anthropology and the Center for the Study of Human Origins, contributed to the findings. You can read more about the discoveries, here.
The Department of Anthropology at NYU, particularly Jerome Whitington, assisted in efforts to rescue climate change data from being purged by the Trump Administration on the EPA’s website. You can read more about their efforts in rescuing this data, here.