Anthropology / Everything Human

Lifting the Emotional Embargo With Cuba

Identity

  • In Flux

  • "Race"

    Racial Realities

    When I tell my students that there is no such thing as “race” (meaning biological race), I wait for the blowback. I know it is coming. “Well if there is no such thing as race,” one of them will say, “then why do we look different, like our skin color?” Or another will say, “If there is no such thing as race, then why do we continue to …

  • "Race"

    The Black Lives Matter movement has brought issues of race to headlines across the United States.

    Why We Must Talk About Race

    I grew up a black woman in urban Los Angeles during the age of the civil rights movement. “Race” was all around me, woven into the fabric of my personal life, my community, my country. Perhaps it was inevitable that I would become a cultural anthropologist who studies how race works in the world. I’ve always wanted to know why. Why do we live in this community, and …

  • The Dirt

    Past Imperfect

    Let’s start with some old dirt. Who were the first people to arrive in North America more than 12,000 years ago? Did these intrepid explorers originate in Siberia and cross the frozen straits of Beringia? Or were they mariners who bravely struck out into the Pacific, heading east into the blue unknown? Who were the people to first call North America home? For more than a century, archaeologists …

  • Cultural Relativity

    To Tell or Not to Tell

    The lives of two South African sisters infected with HIV reveal the difficulties international aid organizations have grasping subtle cultural differences.