Synopses & Reviews
Applied Anthropology: Domains of Application, edited by Satish Kedia and John van Willigen, comprises essays by prominent scholars on the potential, accomplishments, and methods of applied anthropology. Domains covered in the volume include development, agriculture, environment, health and medicine, nutrition, population displacement and resettlement, business and industry, education, and aging. The contributors demonstrate in compelling ways how anthropological knowledge, skills, and methodologies can be put to work in addressing social, economic, health, and technical problems facing societies today. With their genuine commitment to protecting the diversity and vitality of human communities, applied anthropologists working in real-life settings have and will continue to have a lasting impact on people around the world. The editors enrich the volume by providing introductory and concluding chapters that offer a detailed historical context for applied anthropology and an exploration of its future directions.
"The editors…have brought together some of the best scholars in their fields, and the result is a comprehensive view of the substantive contributions of applied anthropology to solving many pressing problems of our time. This book will serve as an invaluable resource and an up-to-the-minute guide to the major fields of application in anthropology. Just as important, this collection helps us understand how these seemingly disparate arenas share a common appreciation for the distinctiveness and practical value of the anthropological perspective." < p="">Erve Chambers, Professor and Chair, Department of Anthropology, University of Maryland, College Park <>
"Applied work expands and advances the relevant frontier of our entire anthropological discipline. Kedia and van Willigen's rich compendium proves this beyond doubt. Their book informs with facts. It equips with tools. It convinces with arguments. It shows the cutting edge practicing anthropological knowledge and how beneficial this knowledge can be to its users--governments, development agencies, private corporations, schools, hospitals, etc. From the scholars who speak within this volume, several audiences stand to learn: applied practitioners as well as academics, students and faculty, and, particularly, those organizations that search for new knowledge and insights into what they do today but could do better tomorrow. The book is a repository of much state-of-the-art experience in anthropology and an inspiring tool for further applied research and informed social practice." < p="">Michael M. Cernea, Research Professor of Anthropology and International Affairs, George Washin gton University, former World Bank Senior Advisor for Social Policy <>
"This volume is a significant addition to the applied anthropology literature. I am impressed by their efforts to expand the intellectual and conceptual landscape of the subdiscipline. They have put together an extraordinary group of leaders in their fields who offer detailed reviews of the major domains of practice. The introductory and concluding essays written by the editors tie the content of each chapter to the history and the future of the discipline, reflecting their extensive knowledge of applied anthropology, its origins, and its accomplishments. This collection will help the professional learn about the current status of these domains and will provide students who want a career in the practice of anthropology with an essential foundation." < p="">Thomas A. Arcury, Professor and Director of Research, Department of Family & Community Medicine, Wake Forest University School of Medicine <>
"There are several single-author textbooks currently available describing how the concepts and methods of academic cultural anthropology can be adopted, with certain modifications, to achieve specific social transformations and policy goals. Each of them carries the title Applied Anthropology, followed by a distinguishing subtitle. In comparison, this edited volume is notable for its multiplicity of perspectives, contributed by some of the discipline's heaviest hitters. The book will find two enthusiastic audiences: academic anthropologists seeking to learn more about anthropology's fifth field, and students of applied anthropology requiring exemplars of practice. Some of the domains discussed--development, business, health--are thoroughly covered in the single-author texts; others (agriculture, aging, resettlement) are not. The usual introductory textbook materials on history, theory, and methods are concisely reviewed in the first chapter, so the book can be used as a stand-alone as well as a supplementary text. A short but admirable summary chapter places the contributors' work into the context of significant contemporary phenomena (e.g., demographic changes and globalization) as well as current trends in applied anthropology (e.g., greater interdisciplinarity, reflexivity, and community participation). Recommended. Upper-division undergraduates and above." -
Two pioneers in the field of applied anthropology have compiled a groundbreaking, comprehensive anthology with numerous contributions from key figures of the anthropological world.
About the Author
SATISH KEDIA is Associate Professor of Anthropology and Director of the Institute for Substance Abuse Treatment and Evaluation at the University of Memphis.JOHN VAN WILLIGEN is Professor of Anthropology at the University of Kentucky.