Panel 1: Doing Histories of Anthropologies. Theories, Methodologies, Practices

This panel brings historians of anthropology together to discuss what defines the histories of anthropologies. It also investigates how histories were cultivated in the past and how they should be practised in the future. Due to their interdisciplinary nature, the histories of anthropologies rely on both historical (re)construction and anthropological sensitivity – so much so that more than 40 years ago, George W. Stocking envisioned a “historically sophisticated and anthropologically informed history of anthropology” (1982, XVIII). But how much training in archival research and historical methodology, as well as in fieldwork are fundamental prerequisites to practise the histories of anthropologies? Can anyone “do histories” of anthropologies? Or should historians of anthropologies be anthropologists themselves? Furthermore, how should we write the histories of anthropologies? Using which major paradigms, theoretical approaches, and research methodologies? Is the distinction between “presentism” and “historicism” still relevant, or is it the social uses of scientific discourses that matter (Graham-Lepenies-Weingart 1983)? How does the post-colonial critique of anthropology relate to historical/anthropological discourses (Kucklick 2008) and how shall we proceed in elaborating more widely acceptable historiographies? What can we learn from theories and perspectives brought from history, both the history of sciences and the history of ideas, about knowledge production and transfer? Eventually, how do methodologies need to change to be able to allow historians of anthropologies to respond to current epistemological and social challenges better?

Convenors: Fabiana Dimpflmeier (“Gabriele d’Annunzio” University of Chieti-Pescara), Ildikó Sz. Kristóf (Hungarian Academy of Sciences / Eötvös Loránd Research Network).

Wednesday, 6 December 2023

Session I [Watch here!] — Session II [Watch here!]

Early Ethnographers Before 1870 — Han F. Vermeulen

From Iconoclasm to Anicony and Restoration: the Uses of Concepts in Anthropology — João Leal

Historicizing anthropological observation: Edward Burnett Tylor’s methods of data collection and processing — Maria Beatrice Di Brizio

Out of the Archive and into the Field: from the History of Anthropology to the Anthropology of Anthropology — Daria Moskvina

Reconsidering the “Two Cultures”. New perspectives from the History of Anthropology — Fedra Alessandra, Pizzato

Case study Richard Thurnwald: Some reflections on his position in the Nazi period — Peter Rohrbacher

Vilmos Diószegi’s fieldworks between 1957 and 1964 in Northern Mongolia and Southern Siberia — István Sántha, Tatyjana Szafonova

Doing History of Ethnology/Anthropology in Two Transylvanian Institutions — Alina Branda

Anthromanticism: Seeking European Mind, Body, and Community in the Himalaya — Young Hoon Oh

Linnaeus in Lapland: Generating Knowledge in Transit — Staffan Müller-Wille, Elena Isayev