As anthropology assesses an increasing number of reports about abuse, bullying, sexism, and financial misconduct and fraud at its now shooting-star journal HAU, it is important to keep a few basics in mind.
Given that nowadays most people live in societies organized according to capitalist principles and given that few oppose those principles fundamentally, capitalists may well constitute the world’s largest ideology-based formation. Most anthropologists have undoubtedly had encounters with capitalists, who occupy positions in all social strata. Yet, apart from the “usual suspects” such as CEOs, elites, leading politicians, and other members of the transnational capitalist class, our discipline pays little, and certainly not enough, explicit attention to the many who equally support and/or benefit from capitalist principles—be they ordinary employees in governments and in the private sector, subalterns with native title claims, or even social welfare claimants (for the varying scope and scale of anthropological research so far, see Friedman 1999; Kalb 1997; Neveling 2015; Rose 2015; Salverda 2015). Continue reading
This post is part of a feature on the 2017 UK elections, moderated and edited by Patrick Neveling (SOAS, University of London).
As I left Bournemouth train station this afternoon, a homeless man approached me and asked for some change. Shelters in Bournemouth and elsewhere in the United Kingdom charge money to rough sleepers on a per night basis. The going rate is currently four British pounds in Bournemouth, and it is certainly a common experience for commuters returning from Southampton and London to this southwestern English seaside town to be asked to for a contribution to those fees at the train station. In fact, the local council adds further pressure to an anyhow pressurized population of homeless in Bournemouth. As the current Tory government has cut several welfare packages, the number of homeless has risen dramatically across the United Kingdom in recent years.
On 1 November 1950, two Puerto Rican males tried to shoot their way into the provisional White House in Washington, D.C., aiming to kill President Harry S. Truman. Allegedly, the assassins were members of the Puerto Rican Nationalist Party, an underground resistance movement opposed to US colonialism on that Caribbean island and portrayed by a subsequent report to the US House of Representatives Committee on Interior and Insular Affairs as “a handful of independence fanatics…replete with terror” supported by the US Communist Party.