Museum exhibits have a purpose: they tell a story, they teach you something, and they make you think. Behind the scenes at a museum, people are working to help us learn and understand this story, but who should decide what we should learn from a museum? This question becomes even more complicated when we consider […]Read more "Displaying Ethnographic Objects"
Anthropology has always been a hotly contested subject. Subject to generalizations and laced with biased opinions that permeate future theoretical thought, anthropology has proven to be a flawed, if not dangerous discipline. Especially throughout its origins, theories on race and culture clashed and went unresolved for decades. Even today, academics are debunking, tweaking, […]Read more "Anthropology of Museums… and Anthropology."
The saying goes “you learn something new every day.” Last Tuesday the post “Obscurity vs. Notoriety: An Immigrant’s Dilemma” taught me something. I knew next to nothing about the Basque people. They are not one of the ethnic groups that I think of when discussing immigration history in the United States. That post and our […]Read more "(Still) Hidden in Plain Sight"
“It all started with the Imp!” proclaimed t-shirts at my great-grandmother’s 100th birthday party in 2006. Mary Schubitsch arrived in America as Maria Imp, a teenager from Austria. Excluding her bold choice to divorce an alcoholic spendthrift husband, her story of life in America is a fairly common one—but my family’s pride is so strong […]Read more "Obscurity vs. Notoriety: An Immigrant’s Dilemma"
Where can you go to enjoy delicious Indian chicken tikka masala, Korean kimchi and Ethiopian kitfo all in the same place? The answer, not surprising to foodies, is most urban areas in the United States. Indians, Koreans, and Ethiopians are part of a new wave of immigrants to America, and, much like earlier Italian, Irish, […]Read more "Bagels or Bust!"
The fast approach of Valentine’s Day has colored my academic lenses. Though some contend this is a holiday created by greeting card companies, I love the grocery store aisles of red and pink. I could (and have) spent more time than I care to admit reading card after card in store after store, all in […]Read more "In the Spirit of Love"
“It says in the Torah, only through a man has a woman an existence”.  Groan. Throughout Anzia Yezierska’s Bread Givers, Reb Smolinsky makes multiple, groan-inducing comments about women needing men to become more than what they are. Such remarks likely elicit groans in nearly every reader. Yet, regarding the novel’s protagonist Sara Smolinsky, some […]Read more "I Struggle, Therefore I Am"