AN News: “SLA at the 2016 AAA Meeting” by Aaron Ansell and Anna Babel

The Society for Linguistic Anthropology (SLA) panels and other events at the upcoming AAA Annual Meeting (November 16-20 in Minneapolis,MN) promise to be exciting ones. Below is a schedule of these events with links to the Full Program on the AAA website. Wednesday, November 16th 2:00 p.m.-3:45 p.m. Affect, Identity, and Language Ideologies (2-0145) Blank Faces (2-0170) Prayer, Poverty, and Song: Cultivating Religious Sound in a Secular World(2-0225) 4:00 p.m.-5:45 p.m. Discourses of Power and the Politics of Discourse (2-0380) Media and the Movement of Language (2-0415) Sticks and Stones: Struggle in Discourse (2-0330)   Thursday, November 17th 12:15 p.m.-1:30

AN News: “Digital Counterpublics: Black Twitter in the Aftermath of Ferguson” by Mariam Durrani (University of Pennsylvania)

Anthropology News Article On November 24, 2014, St Louis prosecutor McCulloch announced that the grand jury trial did not indict Officer Darren Wilson for the murder of Michael Brown. As the news media reports and subsequent protests unfolded, the Twittersphere erupted in thousands of tweets condemning the non-indictment, especially given his self-confessed shooting of an unarmed 18-year-old. These tweets are constitutive of a digital Black counterpublic that provides a strong opposition to mainstream media reporting and analysis. In the days that followed, online commentators critiqued the mainstream media coverage of Ferguson, the non-indictment, and other shootings of unarmed black men

Where have all the numbers gone? (Or 1 + 99 = 53 + 47)

December 5, 2012 No Comments Chad Nilep Discourse, In the news , , ,

In 2011 the American Dialect Society listed ‘the 99%’ among its Words of the Year. In 2012 ‘47%’ became the new politically-charged number. These numbers are connected in a way that might not be obvious.

Mitt Romney was recorded declaring, “There are 47 percent of the people who will vote for the president no matter what.” Because they pay no income tax, Romney suggested, 47% of Americans are dependent on government. This resembles a charge made in 2011 by conservative activists at the53.tumblr, which in turn was a response to the Occupy Wall Street-affiliated wearethe99percent.tumblr.

On socialism, liberalism, and neo-liberalism

“Socialism” and “liberalism” are poorly defined in US politics; the former is over-applied to left-of-center positions, and the latter used in two almost reverse ways. “Neoliberalism” is a hot topic in contemporary anthropology, but the word is sometimes used without sufficient reflection. One way to spot the best work is to look for authors who take pains to define the terms.

They are them; we are me and others.

August 31, 2010 1 Comment Chad Nilep In the news , ,

Stanley Fish notes that critics of the so-called ‘Ground Zero mosque’ see the terrorist attacks of September 11 as an act committed by Islam, for which all Muslims are responsible. In contrast, the stabbing of a cab driver by an attacker who reportedly asked the driver if he is Muslim is seen as “the act of a disturbed individual,” not a representative of an anti-Islamic position.

University of Arizona Department of Linguistics’ letter to state lawmakers

The Arizona Department of Education is asking school districts to remove teachers who speak “heavily accented or ungrammatical” English from classrooms where students are learning English. In response, the Department of Linguistics at the University of Arizona has drafted a statement summarizing research on language variation and its effects on language acquisition.

Refreshingly careful definitions of “Socialism”

April 26, 2010 No Comments Chad Nilep In the news , ,

The word socialism seems to be much in vogue in the United States recently, primarily as an epithet for one’s political opponents, especially for representatives of the Obama Administration or the Democratic Party, but also for “the Media” collectively.

I was therefore pleasantly surprised to find two recent blog posts pointing out how this usage differs from the traditional definition of socialism as a political position.