Anthropology in the Public Sphere, 2008: Emerging Trends and Significant Impacts



ABSTRACT  The themes, trends, and significant events of 2008 demonstrate that anthropology has established a new foothold in the public sphere—one that makes the most of novel forms of communication to reach far beyond the ivory tower to disseminate knowledge widely and freely. This review focuses on six topical areas of robust anthropological research in 2008 that also addressed some of the year's most pressing problems and issues, including the following: (1) war and peace; (2) climate change; (3) natural, industrial, and development-induced disaster recovery; (4) human rights; (5) health disparities; and (6) racial understanding, politics, and equity in the United States. It concludes by addressing some emerging issues in 2009 that especially require anthropological attention and insight, if we are to move beyond “business as usual.”[Keywords: practicing anthropology, public anthropology, 2009 trends, anthropological impacts]