2010 Society for Applied Anthropology Meetings

I'll be taking a break this week so that I can attend the annual meetings of the Society for Applied Anthropology. These meetings are usually pretty fun, and they're often held in some unusual spots. This year we're headed to Merida, Mexico, which should make for an excellent break from a semester of teaching. I've got two papers to present on two very different topics, and I thought I would share the abstracts. I would love to talk/email more with anyone who wants to know more or has something to share, as both papers represent some longer-term research and personal interests. Here are the abstracts:

Moving with Maya: the Filming of a Social Movement

Abstract: After 500 years of enduring violence, exploitation, and marginalization, Maya peoples throughout Central America have begun participating in perhaps the most extensive pan-Maya movement to date. Maya from throughout the region have converged for an annual event at the ruins of Tikal for Maya Day, a reclaiming of the Columbus Day holiday. This paper details the 2009 experience of filming the procession to Tikal with a small group of Q’eqchi’ Maya healers from southern Belize. These healers intend to use the video for educational purposes at home and abroad to further the movement’s visibility and vitality while highlighting the importance of contemporary Maya culture.

The above paper will be part of the following session of papers:

Gaining "Visibility" through Visual and Media Anthropology: Theory and
Practice in Collaborations with Marginalized and Excluded Populations

Neoliberal globalizing capitalism creates new inequalities, and exacerbates existing and enduring ones. Concurrently, the globalization of media allow for the images and stories of vulnerable and excluded groups to be seen and heard by more people than ever before, creating "mediascapes" in which such populations compete for "visibility" on an imagined global stage. How do people in marginalized groups theorize about the use of media, especially those that have a global reach, in their attempts to gain "visibility"? How can media anthropologists work collaboratively with marginalized populations, joining their struggle for social justice as well as
producing rigorous scholarly research?

My second paper is something a bit different, and is a product of a collaborative effort with a fellow anthropological researcher:

Immigrant Health Care Niches: Exploring the Role of Botanicas in Tampa, FL

Many immigrant populations in the U.S. face a range of difficulties in accessing health care. Botanicas represent a unique health care resource in many U.S. cities for immigrant populations from Latin America and the Caribbean. Known as sites where various regional
medical traditions are maintained and practiced, botanicas provide access to affordable and familiar health care for many immigrants. This study examines botanicas in Tampa, Fl, focusing on the populations they serve and the common health needs they meet. The mapping of botanicas with other health care institutions further reveals the service niche that botanicas provide.

Check out the SfAA meeting program here >>>
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  1. Sounds really interesting!! Be sure to keep us updated, and good luck!

  2. dooglas8:01 PM



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