Over the past decade, SOAN students have been a regular feature at the annual meeting of the Society for Applied Anthropology (SfAA). The SfAA uniquely convenes academic anthropologists with a constellation of ‘practitioners’ — anthropologists who use their degree(s) to work in international development, public health, international development, the non-profit sector, and a variety of other areas. This year, the annual meeting was held in Santa Fe, New Mexico.
Seven students participated in the poster session, which provided them the opportunity to present their research and receive feedback from numerous conference attendees. And as usual, our students’ research widely impressed the anthropologists at the conference. Here’s a quick list of the Puget Sound students’ poster titles.
Elena Augustine’s project, Pro-Life Direct Activists’ Affect on Planned Parenthood Patients and Employees, explored how pro-life activism shapes clinic dynamics and defense tactics in the greater Tacoma area.
Elena Becker’s project, Impacts of Development Discourse on Appropriate Technology “Solutions,” distilled her fieldwork in Madagascar and her subsequent senior thesis work into a critique of the contemporary development paradigm.
Maria Birrell presented her senior thesis project, entitled Applying Feminist Theory to Indigenous Archaeology, which explores how feminist archaeological theory has reshaped the practice of archaeological fieldwork in the Pacific Northwest.
Sam Carp’s summer research exploring agricultural practices in Ghana, further extrapolated for his senior thesis, was distilled in his project poster, entitled, Understanding the Role of Subsistence Farming in a Developing Nation. In that project, Sam emphasizes the food security role of local markets and subsistence farming.
Emma Erler’s project, A Forged Dichotomy between Biomedicine and Traditional Healing Practices: An Ethnographic Study of Sikkim Dichotomy, builds on her ethnographic research during her semester abroad in India, exploring the dialectic between the biomedical paradigm and traditional, historic healing practices in India.
Kathryn Stutz’s project, Transnational Museum Networks Passing Through Qatar: The Balance of Communication, Curation, and Culture, distilled her AHSS summer research project in Qatar amidst the astonishing bloom of new museums there. This project examines some o the complex processes and relations discernible in the the process of establishing these museums, their exhibit, and their content.
Ariel Ziegler’s senior project, entitled National Parks for All?: Exploration of African American Accessibility of US National Parks, uses an ethnographic methodology to explore differential access to America’s archipelago of national parks.
As noted, Puget Sound has established a perennial footprint at the Society for Applied Anthropology, and these students’ work set the pace for the annual poster session. Congrats to all involved for another successful conference.