The Familiar Strange · Ep #78 Alternative Healing Practises & The Social Status of Shopping Centres: This Month on TFS This week we’d like to introduce you to our newest Familiar Stranger, Ruonan Chen! Ruonan is currently doing her fieldwork around hospitals and healing practises in the Tibet autonomous region. In this episode, the strangers … Continue reading Ep #78 Alternative Healing Practises & The Social Status of Shopping Centres: This Month on TFS
yelling, crawling and rolling. Later, they begin to show some animal-like behavior: hissing, roaring and moving on all fours. This is my fieldwork. The place is Java, the Special Region of Yogyakarta. Pawang is a kind of ritual specialist believed to be capable of controlling animals, spirits, and other invisible forces. But more commonly, or so it seems, pawangs apply their powers in controlling possession or inducing and then ending the state of trance during jathilan dance. This dance is the focus of my attention. And this research is my second shot at trying to have an academic career. I came a long way: from the field as abstract as the history of Western philosophy and the land as distant as Russia. Running away from minimal wages, long teaching hours, and impossibly high expectations about presenting and publishing, I found my new passion as far away from the notions of enlightened modernity or cynical postmodernity as possible.
The Familiar Strange · Special Episode: Caroline Schuster, Sarah Abel & Catherine Frieman on The Archaeology of F*****g Before we dive into today’s episode we’d just like to add a content warning for this episode for mentions of slavery and sexual assault This week, we’re bringing you an extra special interview/panel. Familiar stranger Alex Zoomed … Continue reading Special Episode: Caroline Schuster, Sarah Abel & Catherine Frieman on The Archaeology of F*****g
Sheets of newspaper cover a portion of the floor of our house in Manila, and on top of those thin pieces of paper sits a white candle, a box of matches, a metal spoon, and a metal basin filled with water. The doors are locked. We’re huddled around the basin, and the room plunges into silence. Rest assured, this is not some scene from a B-rated supernatural horror movie. This is just what happens whenever anyone in my family gets sick. We call an albularyo—Tagalog for witch doctor or folk healer—to come and conduct either tawas or hilot depending on the degree of illness. All my life, I’ve never really understood nor tried to understand why my mom rarely sends us for check-ups, opting instead for tawas, hilot, and the occasional pharmaceutical drugs we self-medicate ourselves with. That is, until I took an Introduction to Anthropology course, where I encountered the term “structural violence” and the whole world of medical anthropology.