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Curated Collections


After the words “America” and “United States,” President Donald Trump mentioned sovereignty more than any other topic in his speech to the United Nations General Assembly in September 2017. Trump linked sovereignty to global... More


Precarity is an emerging abandonment that pushes us away from a livable life. In a growing body of scholarship centered on social marginalization, the concept of precarity has come to name “the politically induced condition in which certain... More

Reclaiming Hope

Has hope become a word that betrays you? In an escalating “war on words” (van Eekelen et al. 2004, 1), has hope bulldozed over our dreams? During the 2008 U.S. presidential election, “hope” became yet another vacuous political slogan... More

Everyday Islam

This collection gathers five articles previously published in Cultural Anthropology, by Hayder Al-Mohammad, Kenneth George, Naveeda Khan, Arzoo Osanloo, and Carolyn Rouse and Janet Hoskins. The collection also includes interviews... More

Affect, Embodiment, and Sense Perception

Recent trends in social theory have placed great importance on affect for both analytic and political reasons, but the term is somewhat vague and ambiguous. For example, it has been described as felt bodily intensity that is:... More


Infrastructures are the systems that enable circulation of goods, knowledge, meaning, people, and power. In Splintering Urbanism (2001), Stephen Graham and Simon Marvin argue that we can see the role of public... More

Ethnographies of Science

In a 2001 themed issue of Cultural Anthropology, "Anthropology and/in/of Science," editor Daniel Segal noted a scarcity of ethnographically grounded accounts of the practices of scientists. In this collection we aim to... More

Literature, Writing, and Anthropology

What is the work that stories do? Our Curated Collection on literature, writing, and anthropology seeks to address this question by creating a space in which fiction and anthropology converge, collide, and collapse into one another.... More

The Digital Form

Digital technology has been celebrated in recent years for its capacity to foment political change, as evidenced by the role of social media networks in the Arab Spring, and spur development, as indicated by the popularity of information... More


What roles might the concept of ritual play in the study of contemporary society and culture? As one of the founding concepts of our discipline, ritual has long been a cornerstone of anthropological thought: from the works of Émile Durkheim through... More


We encounter water no matter where we live and work. It trickles across forest floors and consolidates in rivers. It collects behind dams, runs under cities, and is diverted into irrigation systems. It is pumped from wells and travels in plastic... More


From terrorism to swine flu to the current economic crisis, issues of security, broadly defined and experienced, seem to be taking center stage in our contemporary moment. In light of this, Cultural Anthropology has decided to focus a... More