Donald Trump vs. Blood Magic

Donald Trump has revived old stereotypes in claiming that Fox News commentator/Republican debate moderator Megyn Kelly was ruled by her hormones (“bleeding from her wherever”) when she critiqued his multiple sexist statements and stances.  Explaining away women’s anger by reference to the menstrual cycle is an old habit of those

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Social Change: One Petition at a Time?

As a high school student, I remember the excitement of going door-to-door to solicit signatures on petitions of various sorts. Adding one’s name to a list of other names on a single piece of paper may not seem consequential.  But when that sheet joins hundreds or thousands of others, suddenly

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(How) Do Anthropologists Celebrate Valentine’s Day?

As an anthropologist, the first thought that comes to mind as we approach an upcoming holiday is typically, How do they celebrate this holiday in X?—X being a faraway land where the celebration is likely to look quite different from how it looks in my hometown. The next thought that

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Why Not “Je Suis Lassana”?

Much of the Western world has expressed solidarity with the right to publish offensive cartoons by identifying with the cartoonists at the iconoclastic weekly, Charlie Hebdo, who were killed by Islamicist fundamentalists. To date, the Je Suis Charlie Facebook page has garnered some 315,000 “Likes.” Multilingual “I am Charlie” mottos

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For those Who Decry the Degraded State of the English Language

Racist claims to the contrary (as in the Urban Dictionary’s definition of Ebonics as “A poor excuse for a failure to grasp the basics of English”), it’s good to remember that language is ALWAYS changing . . . and it’s so easy to forget–or claim shock on discovering–earlier meanings. The

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Are We Stuck in the ‘Fifties?

This set of fourteen offensively sexist ads from the 1950s is so over-the-top, it’s easy to dismiss them, relegating them to a “Thank goodness we’re beyond this and have made some progress” trash bin. But many of the recent comments added to a website that uploaded the ads suggest otherwise.

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