Fellowship Opportunity: Postdoctoral Associate in Critical Heritage Studies, Cornell University, CIVIC/Society for the Humanities

Cornell University’s CIVIC initiative invites applications for a two-year Postdoctoral Associate position, starting in Fall 2019. We invite applications from scholars who have completed the Ph.D. within the last three years with a specialization in critical heritage studies focused on the material world including architecture, monuments, and other forms. Discipline of specialization is open to any area of the humanities and social sciences (including archaeology, anthropology, art history, classics, history, and political science), as well as architecture.

The CIVIC Postdoctoral Associate will teach two courses per year, and will deliver at least one public lecture each year. Additionally, the position-holder will help organize and participate in the regular meetings of the CIVIC Research Group on "Unsettled Monuments, Unsettling Heritage," an intensive faculty research collaboration focused on examining the formation, transformation, and erasure of heritage and architecture.

The balance of the Postdoctoral Associate’s time is to be devoted to her/his own research. The faculty members of the CIVIC CoLab will serve as faculty mentors in order to assist in their professional development. The CIVIC Postdoctoral Associate is required to be in residence at Cornell during the semesters of her/his tenure, but is free to conduct fieldwork in the summer or during the winter break if desired. The salary for this position will be $53,000 per year, with benefits, and with up to $3,000 per year available in research funds. Materials must be received before June 12, 2019 to receive full consideration.

Eligibility: Applicants must have received the Ph.D. degree no earlier than January 1, 2016. Applicants who will complete all requirements for the Ph.D. degree (including filing the dissertation) before appointment in August 2019 are eligible to apply. The completion date for the Ph.D. degree will in no circumstances be waived or extended.

Teaching: The position-holder is expected to teach four classes during the two years at Cornell to be determined in consultation with the CIVIC CoLab members and relevant department chairs. The timing and content of offerings will be negotiated after the fellow has accepted the position.

Applications: Applications must be submitted through Academic Jobs Online (https://academicjobsonline.org/ajo/jobs/13808). Please submit (1) a letter of application; (2) CV; (3) writing sample (of less than 30 pages); (4) descriptions (no more than 100 words) of two courses (one lecture, one seminar) that the candidate proposes to teach as a fellow; and (5) letters from two references who can speak to the candidate’s qualifications. Questions about the position or the application process should be addressed to Durba Ghosh (dg256@cornell.edu) or Adam T. Smith (ats73@cornell.edu).

CFP: Engaging Anthropology, University of Massachusetts, Amherst

As part of our 50th Anniversary celebrations, the Anthropology Department at the University of Massachusetts Amherst invites colleagues and collaborators, current students and alumni, faculty past and present, as well as scholars, practitioners, and activists near and far to join us for a four-day conference from October 3rd through October 6th.

At this moment of escalating precarity and deepening inequalities, of resurgent nativisms, social dislocations, and ongoing colonialism-and with climate change threatening life as we know it-we seek to explore how to mobilize anthropological theory and methods to make sense of and respond to these conditions. How might we identify and work toward alternatives?

We seek proposals for academic sessions, papers, workshops, and special events. We have also planned exciting plenaries, community engaged workshops, dinners and events that reflect on the history of the department.

Conference Events and Themes

Our conference theme, Engaging Anthropology, is meant to highlight the importance of ongoing engagements with the many challenges of the day. In line with our department's history and the field's diversity of orientations towards research, teaching, and practice, sessions around our theme of Engaging Anthropology might include any of these areas (though you need not limit your submissions to these areas). 

  • Bio-Cultural Synthesis

  • New Directions in Archaeology and Social Justice

  • Marxism today

  • Engaged Pedagogy

  • Evolutionary Anthropology

  • Critical Heritage Studies

  • Activism and Organizing

  • Medical Anthropology and Global Health

  • Whiteness and Racism

  • Feminist & Queer Theory's impact for Anthropology

  • Indigenous Epistemologies & Methods

  • Anthropology of Europe

  • Political Ecology and Environmental Anthropology


Distinguished Lecturer in the Anthropology of Europe

Lilith Mahmud, Associate Professor of Anthropology, University of California Irvine
Archaeology of the 21st Century

Jason De León, Professor of Anthropology and Chicana/o Studies, University of California, Los Angeles

Black Feminism Today

Whitney Battle-Baptiste, Associate Professor of Anthropology and Director of the W.E.B. Du Bois Center, University of Massachusetts Amherst

Amanda Walker Johnson, Associate Professor of Anthropology, University of Massachusetts Amherst

Dana-Ain Davis, Professor of Anthropology and Director of the Center for the Study of Women and Society, Graduate Center, CUNY

Engaging the Present, Envisioning the Future

Jodi Dean, Professor of Political Science at Hobart and William Smith Colleges

Arturo Escobar, Kenan Distinguished Professor of Anthropology, University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill

Stephen Healy, Senior Research Fellow, Institute for Culture and Society at Western Sydney University and member of the Community Economies Collective.

How do we Define "Human"?

Jeremy DeSilva, Associate Professor of Anthropology, Dartmouth College

Registration and Proposal Submission

You are invited to attend as a general participant. We also seek papers, presentations, events, workshops, posters, and other activities that engage the discipline of anthropology in critical dialogue and mobilize anthropological theory and methods toward transformative practice. Paper and panel abstracts should be submitted via the conference website by June 30, 2019.

 Please contact the conference planning committee at UMassAnthro50@gmail.com with questions or for additional information. 
Join the Facebook event site at https://www.facebook.com/events/225899184991945/ or visit the conference page for updates https://www.umass.edu/anthro/engaging-anthropology

Access Policies for Native American Archival Materials - Case Studies

From ATALAM Facebook Page:

“The Society of American Archivists' Native American Archives Section (NAAS) is producing a series of Case Studies relevant to how institutions have been implementing the Protocols for Native American Archival Materials.

Currently, there is one Tribal Institution slated to be featured in this series. The NAAS would like to see more Tribal professionals and institutions be represented in this Case Studies Series.”

More here.

Smithsonian names Lonnie Bunch III as new secretary, the first African American in the top spot

The Washington Post, May 28, 2019

“Lonnie G. Bunch III — the dynamic founding director of the Smithsonian’s National Museum of African American History and Culture — has been appointed secretary of the Smithsonian Institution, becoming the first African American leader in its 173-year history.

Bunch’s nomination was approved Tuesday morning by the Smithsonian’s Board of Regents. He succeeds David J. Skorton, who announced his resignation in December and whose last day is June 15.

Considered a giant in the museum field, Bunch, 66, becomes the 14th secretary of the quasi-federal institution, responsible for a $1.5 billion annual budget that supports 19 museums, nine research centers and the National Zoo. He is the first Smithsonian director to ascend to the secretary’s post in 74 years and starts his new job June 16.”

More here.

*Deadline Extension* - "Museums Different" Second Biennial Conference of the CMA

UPDATED CALL FOR PAPERS: “Museums Different,” Second Biennial Conference of the Council for Museum Anthropology 

Location: Santa Fe, New Mexico

Dates: September 19 – September 21, 2019

EXTENDED DEADLINE: June 15, 2019 midnight MST

The Council for Museum Anthropology’s second biennial conference will take place in Santa Fe, New Mexico from Thursday, September 19th through Saturday, September 21st, 2019. Using the unique position of Santa Fe -- the “City Different” -- as a starting point for thinking broadly about both local and global approaches to museum anthropology, the conference theme is “Museums Different.” We will build off the theme and conversations from our first conference, “Museum Anthropology Futures,” held in May 2017 at Concordia University in Montreal. 

The conference is based on Santa Fe’s Museum Hill, home to both the Museum of Indian Arts and Culture/Laboratory of Anthropology, the Museum of International Folk Art, and the Wheelwright Museum of the American Indian. The conference includes sessions and activities at the Institute of American Indian Arts as well as an evening reception at the School for Advanced Research. 

Call for Papers: Join CMA colleagues as we discuss imagined and practical realities of collaboration between anthropology, museums, and communities. With the goal of overcoming institutional silences and so-called mute collections, this conference is about the spaces between the objects on museum shelves and the communities who created them.  The conference will focus on how institutions can close the gaps between the theoretical and the practical, or ‘doing.’ 

We welcome proposals and submissions from museum practitioners, scholars, students, Tribal Historic Preservation officers, artists, and all community members. If you are unsure if you or your work would fit into our conference, please reach out and ask. We are more than happy to talk you through your ideas.  

Session Formats & Proposals: We want to highlight innovative ways of presenting anthropological museum work, and are particularly interested in ways in which your presentation format can contribute to community engagement. Please send us ideas for innovative ways to express your research -- whether it be artist dialogues, roundtables, posters, pop-up exhibitions, workshops, pre-circulated papers, Pecha-Kucha-style sessions, problem-solving sessions, installation works, or anything else you can think of. Nothing is too bold -- we will do our best to accommodate your ideas.  

Focus: Sessions should explore both the imagined and real work among anthropology, museums, and communities. While proposals do not have to respond to the below questions, we offer them as guideposts. We are excited to hear how anthropology works where you are. 

  • What work have we already completed?  

  • How does engagement with the histories of museum anthropology affect our work? How does it make it better or worse? How can we mobilize our institutional pasts to inform and improve our community futures?

  • What are the ways in which museum anthropology can better collaborate with communities? How can we and do we live up to our ideals?

  • What does collaboration mean in a day-to-day sense? 

  •  What are the unintended consequences of collaborative, community-based museum anthropology? 

  • What does decolonizing work mean to you, to your collaborators, and in your contexts?

  • What might we stop doing? What hasn’t worked? 

Funding Opportunities: In the coming weeks, we will be announcing scholarship opportunities for Native speakers and participants.The Council for Museum Anthropology has limited funding available for student travel. We are offering three grants of $400 each. To apply, please send us a resume/CV and a 500-word statement demonstrating how attendance at the conference will advance your academic or professional goals.

REGISTRATION, VOLUNTEERING, AND MORE INFORMATION: Registration is now open! For additional information on registration, volunteer opportunities, funding, and visiting Santa Fe, please visit our recently launched conference website (https://www.museumsdifferent.squarespace.com/). 

Submission Guidelines and Deadlines: Please limit submissions to 100 words. To submit, please send your proposal and preferred presentation format to cmaconference2019@gmail.com.Please send your proposal in the body of the email, rather than as an attachment. All proposals and funding applications are due onJune 15, 2019 by midnight MST.

About CMA: A section of the American Anthropological Association, the Council for Museum Anthropology is an all-volunteer membership organization that serves anthropologists and museum professionals. CMA’s mission is to foster the development of anthropology in the context of museums and related institutions. See the CMA’s website (https://museumanthropology.org) and blog (https://www.museumanthropologyblog.com) for more information.

Middle Schoolers Reported Racism from Staff and Patrons During a School Trip to Boston’s Museum of Fine Arts

Hyperallergic, May 23, 2019

“Yesterday, May 22, the Museum of Fine Arts (MFA) in Boston issued an apology for a series of racist encounters experienced by middle school students during a school trip to the institution.

A group of 30 seventh graders from the Helen Y. Davis Leadership Academy in Dorchester faced prejudiced remarks by MFA staff and patrons during their visit to the museum last Thursday, according to Arturo J. Forrest, the academy’s principal. He says that all of the students attending the trip were children of color; over 90 percent of the school’s population is Black or Latinx.

“This was a strong group of students that went, they excelled academically,” Forrest told the Boston Globe. “The shock of it for them was, ‘We are the top and we carry ourselves the right way as leaders.’ You know, it was very eye-opening for them.” The academy uses historically Black colleges and universities (HBCUs) as its inspiration, focusing its educational model on college and career preparation, and cultural empowerment.”

More here.

Seeking roundtable participants for a session titled: "Collaboration as Collections Stewardship"  

Collections stewardship generated through community collaborations operates in many directions. Not only do objects serve and re-serve source communities in both traditional and innovative ways, but objects receive vital attention they may otherwise not receive including: attention to conservation needs, attention to re-housing needs, cataloging and re-cataloging, editing of and addition to catalog information, and further contextualization. Through these collaborations, collections are also generally brought to the attention of stakeholders beyond the project such as: collections managers, curators, education specialists, fundraisers, etc. The participants in this round table each in some way contribute to a collections-focused community collaboration within a cultural heritage institution and will be discussing the benefits not only for the community and the the institution, but also for the collections and how these efforts are not, and cannot be, considered mutually exclusive.

The 2019 CMA meeting is taking place in Santa Fe, NM from September 19-21st.

If interested, please reach out to Haley Bryant, Bryanth@si.edu by Wednesday, May 29th.

The International Council of African Museums (AFRICOM) Celebrates the Restitution of African Heritage on International Museum Day on 18th of May, 2019

To mark the 2019 International Museum Day (IMD), Africa, is celebrating with the rest of the world’s museums this year’s theme « Museums as Cultural Hubs—The Future of Tradition» to voice its support for the restitution of museum collections to the African continent this year and in years to come.

Today, the International Council of African Museums (AFRICOM) announced its renaissance on this IMD 2019. After having surveyed African members and galvanized museum and heritage delegates, the decision to join the international movement for the protection of African heritage has been unanimous.
The first meeting of the revived AFRICOM will be held at the ICOM General Conference in Kyoto, Japan on September 3, 2019 on the theme «Heritage Restitution as the Future of Tradition.> Since its founding in 1999 in Lusaka, Zambia, AFRICOM has been the sole Pan-African Museums NGO.
More and more, Africans recognize cultural and natural heritage as key to peacemaking and sustainable development. As cultural hubs, African history, arts, sciences, craft, natural history in traditional and modern, local, national and innovative museums are conserving the future of tradition, the tangible and intangible heritage of generations to come. African heritage is protected in local communities, museums, universities, archives, libraries, heritage centers and on urban, rural, archeological and natural sites.

New and renovated museums in Africa are thriving: the recently opened Museum of Black Civilisations (Musée des civilisations noires) in Dakar, Senegal ; the restored Abomey Palace in Benin ; the renovated Musée national du Cameroun in Yaoundé ; the new Zeitz Museum for Contemporary Art (MOCAA) in Cape Town, South Africa, Musée des civilisations de Côte d’Ivoire... AFRICOM’s network is working for pan-African collaboration with national museums from Algeria to Zimbabwe, starting with Egypt, Ethiopia, Morocco, Kenya’s 20 museums and 9 sites, Nigeria’s 52 national museums in 34 states, South Africa’s IZIKO network of 11 national museums, libraries and archives, with cultural stewardship from Botswana, Ghana, Mozambique, Tanzania, Sénégal & Seychelles...

The International Council of African Museums has revived the AFRICOM network with delegates from all 54 African countries. AFRICOM has formally addressed support for French President Emmanuel Macron’s Declaration of Ouagadougou (November 2017) and recommendations to return African heritage and museum collections as per the restitution report by Felwine Sarr & Benedicte de Savoy (2018), as well as a future international convention on restitution of indigenous heritage to former colonial states.

All African parties surveyed are unanimous in supporting the return of colonial-era museum collections to Africa. In France, and throughout Europe, in Germany, Belgium, Holland, and the United Kingdom, as well as in the United States and elsewhere, museums with significant African collections are reconsidering where, why and how this African tradition should be best protected now and into the future.

The AFRICOM Heritage Community is here to say that :
« Heritage Resitution is the Future of African Tradition »...

Dr. Rudo Sithole, Acting AFRICOM Executive Director
Ech-cherki Dahmali, Acting AFRICOM Vice President
Email : rdsithole9@gmail.com & e.dahmali@gmail.com

Toledo Museum of Art and Republic of Italy Reach Repatriation Agreement Over Ancient Greek Vessel

ARTNews, March 16, 2019

“A red-figured skyphos—an ancient Greek earthenware drinking vessel—in the collection of the Toledo Museum of Art in Ohio will be repatriated to Italy, where it will now be under the jurisdiction of the country’s government. The vessel, which dates to 420 B.C.E. and is attributed to the Kleophon Painter of Athens, will remain at TMA for the next four years. Through the museum’s agreement, the TMA may ask to renew the loan or request another object from Italy as part of an ongoing cultural exchange.

The museum purchased the skyphos in 1982 for $90,000. After the work’s provenance was disputed in 2017 by forensic archaeologist Christos Tsirogiannis, the TMA conducted an internal investigation in collaboration with Italian authorities.”

More here.

RFP: CMA 2019 Conference “International Museum Anthropology Different: Perspectives and Recent Developments Beyond the United States” Roundtable

RFP: CMA 2019 Conference “International Museum Anthropology Different: Perspectives and Recent Developments Beyond the United States” Roundtable

We are seeking roundtable participants who would like to discuss their international work as museum anthropologists at the CMA 2019 “Museums Different” Conference (Santa Fe, New Mexico, September 19- 21, 2019). As described in the abstract below, the discussion will focus on the ways that the diversity of work museum anthropologists are doing internationally creates opportunities for dialog and reflection about collaborative and other curatorial practices.

Please contact Bill Wood (woodw@uwm.edu) and Christina Kreps (Christina.Kreps@du.edu) via email and include a brief description of the project/work you would like to discuss. 

See the CMA’s website (https://museumanthropology.org) and blog (https://www.museumanthropologyblog.com) for more information about the conference.


“International Museum Anthropology Different: Perspectives and Recent Developments Beyond the United States”

This roundtable brings together participants that have been engaged in collaborative work on an international stage drawing attention to the diverse nature of the practices we call museum anthropology. Focusing on such work opens a wider space for dialog on what “museums different” are and can be. The roundtable explores questions concerning what it means to do museum anthropology “at home” and “away” and the variations in concepts like “decolonization” and “indigenization” in national and historical contexts outside the US. Participants also consider the diversity of Indigenous and other curatorial practices from a broad perspective, exploring the impact of global museological diversity on museum anthropology in the US and vice versa.

Report: Women lead visual arts jobs in Canada

Canadian HR Reporter, May 14, 2019

“Women now dominate Canada's most powerful visual arts jobs, including four of the five director positions in major art galleries from Vancouver to Halifax, which experts say is having a direct impact on exhibitions, public programming and national collection building.

While gender equality has been a goal at many organizations for the last decade, an Ontario Arts Council (OAC) research review suggests women have caught up and now lead the visual arts sector across the country.”

More here.