Undergraduate Workshop

Visual Imagery: a Source or Means of Anthropological Description and Interpretation
February 28st from 5:30-7pm
Brooks Hall Conference Room

This workshop is meant to help students (in the Distinguished Major Program DMP) develop their thesis in a workshop setting. As such it is designed to foster informal and friendly atmosphere, where ideas and thoughts can be easily circulated and shared. It is also a perfect opportunity to hear feedback from senior professors as well as fellow students.
The workshop will consist of a panel of four undergraduate DMP students from Anthropology. The participants on the panel will prepare a 7-10 minute presentation on their work-in-progress thesis papers as it relates to visual anthropology. This would involve discussing their own visuals that they have collected in the field, or visuals that they are using to develop the thesis.

Participants:
Mahati Gollamudi, 4th Year Anthropology and Archaeology Double Major, Art History Minor
Rachel Leeds, Global Development Studies, Jefferson Public Citizens Fellow
Raty Sakya, 4th year, Anthropology
Katie Thompson, Anthropology and English

Presentation Information:
Mahati Gollamudi
Identity In-Situ: Negotiating Community Relations on Site
Though not actively engaging with people on archaeological sites, how one negotiates community relationships, and site sensitivities during the field season in South Asia is an interesting and delicate line to walk. Constructions of identity, self, and community are all unknowingly a part interacting with the people on site.

References:
Warnock Fe, Elizabeth. 1995. Guests of the Sheik: An Ethnography of an Iraqi Village.

Rachel Leeds
Women in Livestock Development, Uganda
I will be discussing the experience of doing research in Northern Uganda for a Jefferson Public Citizens grant, the problems experienced therein, the rewards, and where we are taking the project from here. The project was created to answer a question of particular relevance in the field of development: is the empowerment of women the panacea for developing areas? Specifically, our project was designed to assess how the formation and success of a women’s organization called the Gulu Women Dairy Farmers Association (GWDFA) was impacting the reconstruction of a post-conflict area (Gulu, Uganda). We are currently editing our paper for publication in JPC’s journal Public, and presenting some of our findings at the SSS meeting in Jacksonville in April.

References:
Blumberg, Rae L. 2009. The Consequences of Women’s Economic Empowerment vs. Disempowerment: From the “Magic Potion” for Development to the “Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse”? UNESCO. Draft.
Finnström, Sverker 2008. Living With Bad Surroundings: War, History, and Everyday Moments in Northern Uganda. Durham, NC: Duke University Press.
Nabudere, Dani. 2009. Social Transformations in Uganda: A Study of Grassroots NGOs. Mutua, Makau. Human Rights NGOs in East Africa: Political and Normative Tensions. Philadelphia: University of Pennsylvania, Print.
Twesigye, Emmanuel K. 2010. Religion, Politics and Cults in East Africa. Washington, D.C.: Peter Lang Publishing.

Raty Syka
Using Photography to Communicate Technique: Craft Production and Experiential Knowledge

My research focuses on the contemporary production of craft, particularly in America. Though this deals with processes of cultural appropriation, stylistic choice, and authenticity, comprehending the physical processes of objects being made by hand is essential to understanding their wider social significance. My interest in visual anthropology is in part motivated by the need to communicate experiential, non-verbal and non-written technical knowledge to readers in an academic setting. If photography is also a representation of reality, how can it be used to convey such physical processes effectively?

References:
Mauss, Marcel. 2006 (1935). “Techniques of the Body” in Techniques, Technology, and Civilization.

Katie Thompson
Native Hands, White Aesthetics: The evolving Form of Hopi Katchina Dolls

A discussion on how Hopi Kachina dolls have transformed since the beginning of the 20th century in response to tourist demand in the southwest United States.The Hopi Kachina dolls, or tithu, are today part of an immense campaign to attract tourists to the southwest. Images of Kachinas can be purchased as finer art pieces from shops, as small souvenir dolls, or their image printed on t-shirts. These “dolls”, however, have traditionally held a significant importance in Kachina religious tradition. How have these dolls changed over time? What is the effect?

References:
Pearlstone, Zena, ed.  2001. Katsina: Commodified and Appropriated Images of Hopi Supernaturals. Los Angeles, CA: University of California
Teiwes, Helga. 1991. Kachina Dolls: The Art of Hopi Carvers. Tucson, AZ: The University of Arizona Press.
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