Mitchell Jones's Blog (6)

Is Anthropology "removed from reality"?

In a recent article in the Monthly Review Paul A. Baran writes that social theorists and social empiricists criticize each other constantly. The theorists say that the empiricists don't do enough interpretation while the empiricists say that the theorists don't do enough real research. Baran says that the difference between the two is entirely fictitious and that in fact both are far removed from reality. The apparent contradictions between the two kinds of social scientists only cloud the… Continue

Added by Mitchell Jones on May 7, 2010 at 11:25pm — 2 Comments

Cigarettes and Mutual Aid

The culture of smoking is something that interests me greatly. It is probably one of the best modern examples of reciprocity spoken of in Mauss' the Gift. A cigarette smoker will inevitably become addicted, creating a need for nicotine. It is often not considered "pan-handling" to ask a stranger for a cigarette when the addict doesn't have one. When someone has cigarettes it is considered good faith to give one to someone who needs one. Thus, a kind of… Continue

Added by Mitchell Jones on May 5, 2010 at 2:09pm — 5 Comments

Ardipithecus ramidus and its Impact on Human Nature

Suwa, Gen et al

2009 Paleobiological Implications of the Ardipithecus Ramidus Dentition. Science 326: 94-99.

Fossilized teeth of the…


Added by Mitchell Jones on April 23, 2010 at 6:30pm — No Comments

Thoughts on Graeber's Direct Action: An Ethnography (part I)

I find Graeber's thoughts on ideology and government regulations interesting. Although he doesn't mention Libertarians (aka: anarcho-capitalists) he does touch on a fundamental contradiction in so-called Libertarian thought. The Libertarians and the Tea Party movement insist that the government is an institution that undermines the rights of individuals. Anarchists would agree. However, Libertarians and "Teabaggers" don't recognize the fact that in order for private property to exist there must… Continue

Added by Mitchell Jones on April 23, 2010 at 4:00pm — No Comments

Possession in Haitian Voodoo and Pentecostalism: A Cross-cultural Analysis

Trance states are found in many diverse cultures, two of which are American and Haitian. The trance state is a biological phenomenon that serves a cultural purpose. The shared experience of the trance binds people together and allows them to have direct spiritual experience, which then strengthens their faith, whether it is at an American Pentecostal church or a Haitian voodoo ceremony. In this paper I will examine the…


Added by Mitchell Jones on April 16, 2010 at 7:30pm — 1 Comment

Ethnology Against the State: Anthropological Anarchy


koy • ahn • i • skaht • see

noun (from the Hopi Language)

1. life disintegrating

2. life out of balance

3. life in turmoil

4. crazy life

5. a state of life that calls for

another way of living.


The man

Of virtuous soul commands not, nor obeys:

Power, like a desolating pestilence,

Pollutes whate'er it touches, and obedience,

Bane of all genius,…


Added by Mitchell Jones on April 14, 2010 at 3:30pm — No Comments


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