Inequalities are increasing locally and globally on a vast scale. At the same time, the disparities experienced by racialized groups, certain nationalities, women, poor people, immigrants, and the elderly, are explained by media and politicians as the natural and unavoidable order of things. How are we to understand the relationships between untold wealth and growing immiseration? How do we interpret how stories about inequality are told? Who has access to information about the production of inequality? Who can contest its production? Inequality and equality are often discussed and studied in isolation. Yet anthropological research in archeology, linguistics, human biology, and socio-cultural anthropology has the capacity to show how equality and inequality are inextricably linked through systems of production, distribution, and domination, both past and present. In documenting such patterns, we gain valuable perspectives on the grim actualities of the current conjuncture, as well as deeper understanding of how radical disparities are formed and legitimated, and what happens when they become taken for granted. This lecture series takes a global perspective on the entanglements of wealth, poverty, and inequality, as well as popular narratives of inevitability that effectively silence struggles for social justice and equality. Speakers will explore the nature of these human and material entanglements, their mediation through different channels of communication, their ideological justifications through concepts of race, gender, ethnicity, nationality, hereditary, and class, and the punitive power to enforce these ideas through incarceration, surveillance, criminalization. We further ask how knowledge about power and inequality empowers resistance and struggle.
April 2019
29 April 2019

Torture Trees: Police Violence from Chicago to the War on Terror

Laurence Ralph, Harvard University (Cultural Anthropology) The history of police torture that I will discuss in this talk …

6:30 pm8:30 pm
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March 2019
25 March 2019

Where Has ‘Japanese Women’s Language’ Gone? Language and New Forms of Gender Inequality in Post-bubble Japanese Society

Miyako Inoue, Sociolinguist, Stanford University  I focus on what is called “women’s language” in Japanese, a set of …

6:30 pm8:30 pm
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February 2019
25 February 2019

The Pensioner’s Dilemma: Generations, Class, and Inequality in Southern Europe

Susana  Narotzky, University of Barcelona (Cultural Anthropology) The current crisis in Europe creates new practices and understandings of …

6:30 pm8:30 pm
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January 2019
28 January 2019

Urban (In)Equality and Materiality: A Global, Deep Time Perspective

Dean Saitta, University Of Denver (Archaeology) Scholarly research suggests that the more inclusive and equitable a city, the …

6:30 pm8:30 pm
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December 2018
03 December 2018

The Violence of Fear: Racist Ideologies, Police Perceptions of Threat, and Inequality in Policing

Sherina Feliciano-Santos, University Of South Carolina (Linguistic Anthropology) The escalation of violence by police is often justified as being …

6:30 pm8:30 pm
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October 2018
29 October 2018

Sick of Race: How Racism Harms Health and Misleads Medicine

Clarence C. Gravlee, Sociocultural Anthropologist, University of Florida Social scientists commonly assert that race is a cultural construct, …

6:30 pm8:30 pm
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September 2018
24 September 2018

The Inner Lives of Passively Suicidal Americans: Why Racism isn’t Just Bad for Black People

Carolyn Rouse, Princeton University (Cultural Anthropology) Why should we care about declining white life expectancies in America? Whites …

6:30 pm8:30 pm
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