Race remains an important social issue, but how do anthropologists study it? Inaugurating the EASA network on race and ethnicity, this panel deals with issues including postracialism; intersectionalism; postcolonialism; race, religion, and the postsecular; racial technologies; the ontological turn.
In 2013, the editors of Cultural Anthropology, Anne Allison and Charles Piot, were "surprised that we've had so few submissions about race over the past three-and-a-half years. Are anthropologists no longer interested in the topic - or feel that they've exhausted what they have to say about race? Or has the world changed, with race today a less salient category of everyday life and analysis?" Not surprisingly, their answer was a resounding "no": "The articles in this issue suggest otherwise - that race remains a significant and pressing social category, not only in the United States but also beyond, perhaps more so today than ever - and that anthropologists should be playing a vital role in its analysis". Not only is the history of anthropology entangled with race, both in the production and (self-)critical deconstruction of racial knowledge, but many anthropologists are working on these issues, simply because race, racism, and ethnicity remain pressing social issues across the globe. This panel inaugurates the new EASA network for the anthropological study of race and ethnicity. By way of officially launching the network we want to explore what the anthropological study of race and ethnicity might look like, and what role the network could play in facilitating it. Issues to be explored may include postracialism; intersections between race and other forms of discrimination; postcolonialism; race, religion, and the postsecular; racial technologies; race and the ontological turn. Both ethnographic and theoretical papers are welcome.
"If races don't exist, why are forensic anthropologists so good at identifying them?" Anthropology and metric ancestry estimation: a critical examination of FORDISC and CRANID