Reviewed by: Association of Black Anthropologists
Of interest to: Teachers of Anthropology in Community Colleges, Students, Those Involved in Mentoring Activities
Primary Theme: Inclusivity
Secondary Theme: Ethics
2018 marks the 10th anniversary of the publication of Faye V. Harrison’s Outsider Within: Reworking Anthropology in the Global Age. To honor Harrison’s important intervention, and to complement the 2018 AAA conference theme, Change in the Anthropological Imagination: Resistance, Resilience, and Adaptation, this two-part roundtable explores the ways in which Outsider Within has shaped both our political commitments and our disciplinary praxis. This text enhanced and/or refashioned our ethical sensibilities, promoted a politically engaged orientation to anthropological research, and encouraged multivocal dialogue with interlocutors across temporal, geographic, and disciplinary boundaries. It also introduced burgeoning graduate students to a body of critical theory that would eventually shape our understandings of anthropology and the world -- particularly the “decentering” of western epistemologies and ethnographic authority; the rehistoricizing of the “researchers” and the “researched” in the discipline; the democratization of participation and decision-making in the profession for greater diversity; and the mobilization of knowledge production that is collaborative and publicly engaged. In this roundtable, Harrison’s colleagues and former students reflect on the ways in which Outsider Within has transformed the anthropological imagination, re-orienting the discipline so that it may work towards human liberation.