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Newsarchiv: Institute for Social and Cultural Anthropology

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Jahr 2023

Open Lecture by Professor Robert Desjarlais on 12 Juni

The Institute for Social and Cultural Anthropology cordially invites interested parties to the Open Lecture by      Professor Robert Desjarlais on Monday, 12 June 2023, 6:00 p.m., Seminar Room, Reichardtstr. 11. Professor Desjarlais (Sarah Lawrence College, New York, USA) is currently      visiting the Institute for Social and Cultural         Anthropology as part of his Humboldt Research Award and will give a lecture on "The Palimpsestic Moment: Walter Benjamin, Digital Filmmaking, and Multimodal Phenomenality.”

Public Lecture by Kim Fortun

On Wednesday, June 14, at 4:15 p.m., Kim Fortun (Irvine) will give a public lecture entitled “Late Industrial Ethnography Redoubled – Form Politics to Methods and Back”. The lecture will take place in the main seminar room of the Max Planck Institute for Social Anthropology, Advokatenweg 36, in Halle. For further information, please see the file below.

Inaugural Lecture of Professor Olaf Zenker

On Tuesday, June 6, at 6:00 p.m., Olaf Zenker will give his inaugural lecture, in German, in lecture hall I at the Steintor campus. Under the title „mensch must begin somewhere: About the possibility(ies) of an anthropology", he will engage various conceptions of the human underlying concrete anthropological arguments and discuss, which possibilities may open up when anthropology self-critically deals with its „menschvergessenheit“ (forgetfulness of the human). The lecture and subsequent reception are open to the public: everyone is cordially invited!

The Institute welcomes Professor Amanda Kearney as a Visiting Scholar in May 2023!

Amanda  Kearney is a socio-cultural anthropologist and Professorial Fellow at  the University of Melbourne, Australia. She is also the Editor-in-chief  of the Journal Anthropological Forum (   ). Her  research is distinguished by over 23 years of collaborative and  ethnographic fieldwork with Indigenous communities in northern  Australia, including members of the Yanyuwa and Marra language groups.  Her research specialties include maritime lifeworlds, kincentric  ecology, plural knowledges, cultural wounding and healing. In collaboration with Yanyuwa Amanda Kearney has written several books, including ‘Cultural Wounding, Healing and Emerging Ethnicities’, ‘Violence in Place, Environmental and Cultural Wounding’, ‘Keeping Company: An Anthropology of Being in Relation’ and most recently 'Indigenous Law and the Politics of Kincentricity and Orality' (open access, available at:   ).

AMO LECTURE N°10 by Professor Olúfẹ́mi Táíwò on 23 May

This year’s ANTON WILHELM AMO LECTURE, will be held on site in Halle (Saale) and online on 23 May 2023, 6:15 p.m. CEST. Olúfẹ́mi Táíwò (Cornell University) will be speaking on the topic of “Rewriting the History of Modern Philosophy: On Philosophy of History, Political Philosophy and Liberal Education in 19th Century West Africa”. More information at:   .

New Website of the AMO LECTURES

Check out the new website of the ANTON WILHELM AMO LECTURES. The AMO LECTURES are convened by Olaf Zenker, supported by Thomas Götzelmann, and have been organised annually since 2013 at the Martin Luther University Halle-Wittenberg by the Research Cluster “Society and Culture in Motion”. They feature internationally acclaimed scholars presenting their ongoing research on themes connected to or emanating from the work of Amo. The AMO LECTURES draw inspiration from Jacques Derrida’s concept “under erasure”, crossing out a word while keeping it legible in order to signal its inadequate yet necessary nature: they use the academic format of a “Lecture” named in honour of Amo while putting the term under erasure in order to highlight its ambiguous existence as both the means for critical reflection and – metonymically standing in for the Western epistemic formation itself – the potential object of such critique.

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A warm welcome to our new Visiting Professor Mario Krämer!

As of 1 April 2023, Prof. Dr. Mario Krämer has taken up his visiting position at the Institute for Social and Cultural Anthropology, where he will replace Prof. Dr. Olaf Zenker for one semester while the latter is a fellow at the Käte Hamburger Kolleg Münster “Legal Unity & Pluralism”. Mario Krämer`s PhD thesis (2004) focused on collective violence and social order in South Africa and he habilitated in 2019 at the University of Cologne on the power and legitimacy of chieftaincy in the post-apartheid era. He is currently Principal Investigator of the DFG Research Unit "Transborder Mobility and Institutional Dynamics" (transMID:   ) at the Global South Studies Center of the University of Cologne. In addition to his focus on political anthropology and historical anthropology of Southern Africa, he also conducts research on environmental anthropology, specifically investigating the links between traditional impulse, nature conservation and rural-urban relations in Germany.

Professor Olaf Zenker appointed as Fellow at the Käte Hamburger Kolleg Münster “Legal Unity & Pluralism”

The Käte Hamburger Kolleg “Legal Unity & Pluralism” at the University of Münster (WWU) welcomes our Professor Olaf Zenker as a new fellow in April. He will spend the summer semester at the Kolleg, during which time he will investigate the ongoing process of land restitution in South Africa. His project deals with the highly juridified renegotiations of modern statehood that are at the core of South African land restitution. The new state simultaneously functions as the main driving force, the judicial arbiter and the core reference point as claims are lodged against the state. The project studies land restitution as an exemplary site, at which the moral modernity of the new South African state is contested, renegotiated and made in and through the law.

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The Institute welcomes Professor Robert Desjarlais in 2023 and 2024 as a guest through a successful nomination for the Humboldt Research Award!

The Alexander von Humboldt Foundation has awarded the Humboldt Research Award to Professor Robert Desjarlais (Sarah Lawrence College, New York, USA) after the successful nomination by our professor Anita von Poser. The Alexander von Humboldt Foundation honors internationally leading scientific personalities with the Humboldt Research Award. It is one of the most important scientific awards in Germany. For his scientific achievements in Psychological and Phenomenological Anthropology, Professor Desjarlais has been awarded one of the most prestigious Humboldt Research Awards endowed with 60,000€. Professor Desjarlais is well known internationally for his scholarship on homelessness in the United States, and on life, death, and healing in Nepal. He has also made important contributions to the study of photography and images, and political violence and colonialism in France. Following the invitation by Anita von Poser, whose research focus includes psychological and phenomenological anthropology, Robert Desjarlais is in Germany from February to July 2023 and from February to July 2024, where he engages in anthropological research on themes of death and dying while continuing with his research on histories of life and death in colonial France and Algeria.

New Honorary Professorships at the Institute for Anthropology: A warm welcome to Professor Ursula Rao and Professor Biao Xiang!

In January 2023 our colleagues from the Max Planck Institute for Social Anthropology in Halle, Professor Ursula Rao and Professor Biao Xiang, were appointed as Honorary Professors at the Martin Luther University Halle-Wittenberg. Ursula Rao is Director of the Department ‘Anthropology of Politics and Governance’ and Biao Xiang is Director of the Department ‘Anthropology of Economic Experimentation’ at the Max Planck Institute for Social Anthropology. We are excited about their appointments and look forward to our collaboration!

ETROD: Joshua Reno on "The Wrong Stuff: Orbital Space Debris as Problem and Possibility”

ETROD hereby invites you to the upcoming ETROD (Extractivism and Transition Research Online Dialogues) session. On Thursday, 23th March 2023 from 4-5.30 pm (Central European Time) ETROD welcomes Prof. Joshua Reno (Binghamton University). Joshua will share his research on ‘Orbital space debris’. To join the session, please use the following Zoom link    (Meeting ID: 632 5193 9371, Password: 313517).

If you have any troubles accessing the texts or further questions regarding the session or the ETROD series, please contact Janine Hauer ().

A warm welcome to our new Professor Anita von Poser!

On 1st October 2022 Prof. Dr. Anita von Poser was appointed as Full  Professor at the Institute for Social and Cultural Anthropology at  Martin Luther University Halle-Wittenberg, where she holds the chair for  ‘Mobility Studies’ focusing on human-human and human-environmental  relations. After her master’s and doctoral studies at Heidelberg  University, where she received her DPhil in Social and Cultural  Anthropology in 2009, she became MaxNetAging Postdoctoral Fellow at the  Max Planck Institutes for Demographic Research in Rostock and for Social  Anthropology in Halle/Saale. At Freie Universität Berlin, starting in  2011, she was first Postdoctoral Research Associate at the Institute of  Social and Cultural Anthropology, before becoming Principal Investigator  in the Collaborative Research Center Affective Societies in 2015 and  Professor of Psychological Anthropology with a focus on ‘Migration,  Psyche, Aging’ in 2021. She combines her regional foci on Oceanic and  diasporic-Vietnamese lifeworlds with her theoretical interests,  especially in the fields of the Anthropology of Social Relationships as  well as Psychological and Phenomenological Anthropology. In the coming  years, her research and teaching will focus on phenomena of social,  spatial, and material im-/mobility in view of fragmented contexts of  care, altering life-courses, and ecological transformations. We are  excited about her appointment and look forward to our collaboration!

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