Outside the academy, I’m sure the perception remains that academics sit in leather armchairs, gazing out the gilded windows of our ivory towers, thinking all day. That has not been my experience, nor that of anyone I know. My colleagues and peers have, however, experienced levels of anxiety and depression that are six times higher than experienced in the general population. They report higher levels of workaholism, the kind that has a negative and unwanted effect on relationships with loved ones. The picture is often even bleaker for women, people of colour, and other non-White, non-middle-class, non-males. So whether you think academics are ‘delicate woeful souls’ or not, it’s difficult to deny that there is a real problem to be tackled here.
The 27th of May to the 3rd of June is National Reconciliation Week in Australia. Reconciliation, for anthropology, includes reckoning with the discipline’s colonial past, and confronting the ongoing problems within anthropology today. Anthropology and anthropologists have been involved in violence and dispossession against Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people. And it is still yet … Continue reading Hearing Indigenous Voices
We need to acknowledge the role we all play in silencing research. Consider the times we have dismissed a colleague’s idea because it ‘isn’t worth it’, or immediately assumed a paper must be faulty in some way because we don’t like its conclusions.
Although I’ve often been heard to sigh and groan that “technology hates me”, just like any other self-respecting anthropologist, in this post I want to consider just what we might be missing out on if we choose to totally avoid extending our minds into cyber-infinity and beyond.