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 Paper Abstracts

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TAHA, Maisa (Montclair State U) From Understanding to Connecting: How Refugees Use Smartphone Technology across Linguistic and Cultural Boundaries. Approaches to intercultural communication often emphasize linguistic and interactional barriers to connection: obstacles that digital machine translation (MT) technologies like Google Translate aim to remove. A pilot study with Arabic-speaking refugee families in northern New Jersey examined the limitations and affordances of smartphone MT app use, examining the contexts of such use and how families tackled emerging communication challenges. Crucially, smartphones themselves afforded myriad tools for affective connection - including photos, videos, memes, emojis, apps and social media - that family members deployed to build common ground with local English speakers and maintain transnational links to family and virtual networks. taham@mail.montclair.edu (F-49)

 

TALLMAN, Paula (Field Museum) A “Nutritional Space of Vulnerability”: Food Insecurity, Market Food Consumption, and Health. This paper discusses theoretical and methodological insights from biocultural research in four Awajún communities in the Peruvian Amazon. Specifically, it introduces the concept of a “nutritional space of vulnerability,” which posits that all segments of this population must decide between non-ideal nutritional choices that have psychobiological repercussions. A study of 225 Awajún men and women is presented showing that lower socioeconomic status (SES) is associated with food insecurity and food insecurity was associated with stress, depression, and bodily suffering. Conversely, higher SES was associated with the consumption of market foods, however, this practice was associated with higher body fat. ptallman@fieldmuseum.org (TH-03)


TAMIR, Orit (NMHU) On Being Nontraditional Students: What Really Matters. When talking about nontraditional college students, faculty and administrators generally refer to students 25 and older.  Many of these students have jobs, some have children, some are caring for elderly parents, and some have unique needs that make attending college full-time difficult. This paper will highlight the stories of some of these students.  Their accounts are sometimes unsettling, but always inspiring.  The focus is on what really matters to them.  The paper also addresses the nature of support they may need from fellow students, faculty, and administrators. otamir@nmhu.edu (TH-139)


withdrawn TAYLOR-ALEXANDER, Samuel (Monash U) Terminal Times: 7 Years in Cancer. In this paper I explore how the label “terminal” punctuates and is punctuated by life course events. I use my experience as a cancer patient to think critically about the relation of time and biology and affect. I argue that the language of the terminal produces a form of dreadful anticipation (affect), that is a “margin of manoeuvrability,” “the margin of possibility and potential movement,” which is always haunted by uncertainty. What does i mean to make a life, and what kind of life can be be made in the face of such uncertainty? samtaylor-alexander@monash.edu (S-37)


TELENKO, Shannon (Penn State U) Interrogating Prejudice with White Allies in the Classroom. White students approach racism in multiple ways. Groups at either end of the spectrum align and support underrepresented students and, alternatively, claim that affirmative action is racist and that white males are oppressed. In the middle, white students lean to one side or the other but are not secure enough to choose a side. Teaching in a classroom that sought to bring white allies as well as almost-allies into thinking more like an accomplice in working against institutional and personal forms of bias led to observations of student development through notions of praxis, self-efficacy, and unification of struggles. sjt13@psu.edu (TH-19)

 

THOMAS, Michael (SAS) Remote Personhood: Pragmatic Models of Persons in Engineering Practice. Where personhood is structured and negotiated in situ, the design and development of the infrastructure wherein personhood is achieved relies on considerations about who or who isn’t a person. And yet the processes, tools, and methods of research and design use a variety of models of persons to structure activities, authority, and social norms without requiring the formalization of a general concept of personhood. Through an examination of human centered engineering practices and related discourse, the ad hoc constructions of (remote) personhood can be traced across the pragmatic applications of diverse, implicit and explicit, person oriented models. mhowardthomas@gmail.com (F-42)

 

THOMPSON, Jennifer Jo (UGA) and STINNETT, Ashley (WKU) The Consequences of Scale in Agriculture and Food Systems. The concept of “scale” is at the very heart of anthropology: in-depth local inquiry uncovers what it means to be human. Yet concepts like “local” and “global” are not neutral frames. The framing of scale impacts the politics of the possible: different levels of scale can bring social problems (and possibilities) into relief, or render them invisible. In this presentation, we examine the construction of agricultural scale in the US and examine its consequences for policy and practice in the context of two ethnographically grounded exemplars: the meat industry and farm to school initiatives. jjthomp@uga.edu (F-46)


THORNTON, Thomas F. (U Oxford) Cultural and Cognitive Issues in Urban Transformations towards Sustainability and Lower Carbon Futures: Istanbul and Shanghai. We used cultural model surveys, triangulated with interviews, focus groups and participant observation to identity opportunity spaces for transformation toward sustainability in the fast-developing urban systems of Istanbul, Turkey and Shanghai, China.  Our findings, focused on the construction and renewal sector in Istanbul and the transport and mobility sector in Shanghai, suggest there are important differences in peoples’ views about whether economic growth and sustainability are compatible, and in how transformations towards sustainability should be enabled and supported.  These findings are interpreted in light of larger debates about so-called win-win opportunities for green-growth and policy support for climate change adaptation toward lower carbon futures in key sectors of diverse urban economies. (TH-152)


THORPE, Marian (Rutgers U) Asserting the Right to Refuse: Indigenous Free, Prior, and Informed Consent in Western Panama. In 2016, the Panamanian National Assembly passed a law guaranteeing the indigenous right of free, prior, and informed consent (FPIC) to development projects. While the government heralded this law as an advancement in indigenous rights, the text fails to offer protections in the event that an indigenous group rejects a project in question. In this paper, I discuss practices and politics of refusal amongst Ngäbe activists in the context of mining and hydroelectric development. In so doing, I underscore both the complexity and the importance of the concept of refusal embedded within the right of free, prior, and informed consent. marian.thorpe@rutgers.edu (F-130)

 

TIER, Catherine (UMD) Postpartum Contraceptive Counseling and Initiation at a Community-Based Clinic in College Park, Maryland. Due to adverse health effects stemming from short-interval pregnancies, many postpartum women’s providers encourage them to initiate contraception in the postnatal period. Despite their recommendations, patients experience structural, financial, logistical, and personal barriers to initiation. Using semi-structured interviews and participant observation, this paper explores the experiences of postpartum patients and their providers at a community-based clinic in College Park, Maryland. Both groups experience different obstacles in navigating the social-structural context of the health care system. The participants shed light on specific difficulties regarding postpartum contraception, including problems related to bureaucracy, policy, and personal beliefs. cmtjatemt@gmail.com (W-37)

 

TILT, Bryan (OR State U) The Water-Energy Interface: Balancing Multiple Objectives in China’s Hydropower Sector. This paper examines recent developments in China’s water resource sector, with a focus on three competing management objectives: producing hydropower to meet the ever-increasing electricity demand in cities; managing river flows for conservation and environmental protection; and reducing greenhouse gas emissions for climate-change mitigation. Based on an analysis of national energy and climate policies, along with interviews with scientists and government officials working in China’s water and energy sectors, the paper discusses the tradeoffs, both explicit and implicit, between these various objectives. The paper concludes with a discussion of the implications of these findings for water and energy policy. Bryan.Tilt@oregonstate.edu (TH-14)


TOPASH-CALDWELL, Blaire (UNM) Reclaiming Anishinaabe Akiig: Indigenous Experiences of Climate Change. The Great Lakes is undergoing climate change related regime shifts, disproportionately affecting the over forty Native American tribes in that region in terms of access to traditional plants and ceremonial spaces. In response to ongoing environmental injustices such as mining, pipelines, and hydraulic fracturing, Anishinaabe tribes use life histories of tribal members to revitalize ecologies on and near their reservation lands even as they face new threats to their sovereignty from natural resource management undertakings. This paper explores how Indigenous environmental activists cultivate new alliances to leverage themselves politically while reclaiming their relationships to dispossessed spaces and improving community health. (W-160)


TOVAR, Antonio (Farmworker Assoc of FL), GRZYWACZ, Joseph, MARIN, Antonio, TREJO, Maribel,and GONZALEZ BACKEN, Melinda (FSU) Translating Scientific Research on Heat Related Illness into Extension Education for Florida Farmworkers. Agricultural workers, particularly in the Southeast, are especially vulnerable to death and disability from heat related illness (HRI), a pressing concern given rising temperatures. Addressing this requires a combination of applied research, education, and policy. Physiologic, demographic, and occupational research data has been adapted into HRI prevention training for farmworkers and farm labor supervisors. This presentation reviews the HRI study’s preliminary data and the process of adapting findings into culturally relevant and literacy-appropriate trainings.   It also evaluates the training conducted with farmworkers and discusses potential policy change strategies. Climate change may increase outdoor workers vulnerabilities and multilevel interventions are needed. atovar@hotmail.com (W-47)

 

TOWNSEND, Martha (U Missouri) Tenure and Promotion Practices in Higher Education:  A Case Study Informed by Applied Anthropology. As a non-traditional graduate student in the 1980’s, I realized that advancing in rank in my field of Writing Studies would be complicated by an array of factors.  Although I was ultimately successful, many of these factors affected my bids for tenure and promotion to associate and full professor.  The still-prevalent impediments continue to threaten the careers of highly qualified young faculty, but understanding the phenomenon has eluded the institutions they serve.  One possible aid may lie in research presented at SfAA’s 2016 conference in Vancouver (Foster, “P & T Rituals”).  Using my own cases as examples, this presentation shows how theorizing the problem through the lens of Applied Anthropology may help. TownsendM@missouri.edu (TH-153)

 

TRACY, Natalicia and SIEBER, Tim (UMass) Community Engagement – Equity or Paternalism?: Ethical Issues in University Research and Service Collaborations with Community-Based Organizations. Funders often require identification of community partners for credible research projects on policy-linked questions. Collaborations ensue, involving community partners’ sponsorship of investigators, outreach to recruit research subjects, and assisting in furnishing space and other support. Many types of university-initiated internships also send students seeking training benefits from CBOs through their providing access for work with “the community.” From the viewpoint of a Boston-based immigrant worker center experienced in such matters, what problems can arise in these relationships, and what ethical, resource, and equity issues should university personnel be more aware of in their approaches to collaborations with community partners? natalicia.tracy@umb.edu (TH-04)


TRAN, Allen (Bucknell U) Drug Adherence, Medical Pluralism, and Psychopharmaceutical Selfhood in Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam. This paper examines drug adherence in relation to changing patterns of medical pluralism and neoliberal reforms among psychiatric patients in Vietnam. Patients adapt or reject their medication prescriptions based on concerns about biomedical drugs and their side effects, local concepts of psychic distress and selfhood, and the social context of medicine taking. Situating drug adherence in its political-economic context highlights the relationship between medicine and modernity that underlies these factors. Examining the intersection of multiple medication regimens and political regimes, I argue that nonadherence is rooted in a complex layering of medical traditions and modernist projects of the self. (TH-134)

 

withdrawn TREMBLAY, Adrienne (SWCA Env Consultants) Using National Environmental Policy Act to Preserve the Past for the Future. The National Historic Preservation Act requires federal agencies to consider a project’s effect on “historic properties,” i.e. districts, sites, buildings, or structures eligible for the National Register of Historic Places. Adverse effects to historic properties must be avoided, minimized, or mitigated with avoidance as the preferred choice. However, some cultural resources do not qualify as “historic properties.” For these resources, the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) may provide similar benefits. This paper will demonstrate how NEPA can be used to protect cultural resources through avoidance or through the development of mitigation strategies when avoidance is not possible. atremblay@swca.com (F-41)

 

TRIBBLE, Anna Grace (Emory U) Understanding the Food System in Iraqi Kurdistan Informs Strategies for Buffering Food Insecurity. The biopolitics of global food systems are intertwined with food insecurity. However, crystalizing how local food systems operate within larger forces reveals vulnerabilities for present and future food insecurity. Through 31 interviews, the following research question was investigated: How do actors in Iraqi Kurdistan’s food system contribute to and/or buffer local food insecurity? Qualitative data analysis revealed the following themes: current importation of most food sources; needed stimulus for agriculture; and the decreasing importance of food aid. Understanding the complex food system of Iraqi Kurdistan illustrates the interconnected relationship between improving agriculture, food insecurity, and political stability in the region. anna.grace.tribble@emory.edu (TH-33)

 

TRIPATHY, Aneil (Brandeis U) Engaged Data: The Use of Sustainability Metrics in Urban Interventions. The use of sustainability measurement tools, such as metrics, to drive policy and environmental interventions is often the stated desire of policymakers, urban designers and planners. In this paper, I explore critiques within anthropology on the use of data by planners and other data users and argue that these critiques often misrecognize how data users approach metrics, depicting users as either mystified by measurement or complicit in the modes of power data generates. Drawing from interviews with planners, architects, and policymakers, I argue that many data users are aware of data’s political nature and utilize measurement as a political tool. aneilt@brandeis.edu (S-62)


TRIVEDI, Jennifer and SLOTTER, Rachel (UDel) “We Can’t Be Forgotten”: Perceptions of Post-Hurricane Aid and Recovery in Rockport, TX and Biloxi, MS. The lack of and perceived lack of post-disaster aid greatly impacts the sustainability of affected communities’ relief, recovery, and mitigation efforts. There are continuing issues of injustices associated with the accessibility of immediate aid and during long-term recovery processes for outlying areas directly affected by disasters, but peripheral in media coverage and public discussions (like Rockport, TX after Harvey and Biloxi, MS after Katrina). Understanding how people there feel abandoned by outside aid may help us better understand delays in recovery and how some disaster response efforts are less sustainable over time, especially for vulnerable and at risk populations. jtrivedi@udel.edu (F-95)

 

TRIX, Frances (Indiana U) Host Reception of Asylum-Seekers in Smaller Cities in Germany: Contrasts with Villages and Larger Cities. In 2015 a million refugees entered Germany. All communities were required to accommodate 1.5 percent of their population in asylum-seekers, leading to a remarkable variety of local programs. In the fall of 2016, I studied these programs across Germany from south to north, and grouped my findings according to size of community.  In this paper I will describe the strengths and constraints of programs for host reception of asylum-seekers in German communities from 40,000 to 70,000 up to half a million people. I will contrast these with programs in small towns of under 10,00 and cities of over one million. ftrix@indiana.edu (TH-107)


TROMBLEY, Jeremy (UMD) Watershed Ethnography. In response to growing concerns about water quality throughout the world, many policy makers, environmental managers and activists are turning towards the watershed as the appropriate scale to address these problems. The creation of watershed-scale management institutions is a relatively recent phenomenon. This presentation draws upon research on the intersection of computational modeling and environmental management in the Chesapeake Bay watershed to explore some ways that anthropologists can contribute to an understanding of watershed interactions. (TH-104)


TUCHMAN-ROSTA, Celia (UCR) Smile of Angkor: Threat to Cultural Integrity or Model of Sustainable Heritage Development. The Smile of Angkor production aims to revive the Angkorean Era for international tourists using classical Cambodian dance—a Representative of the Oral and Intangible Heritage of Humanity. The inscription of classical on the intangible heritage list is vital to national narratives of identity construction, but has led to tensions regarding dance development, fears of cultural stagnation, and concerns about the degradation of ritual practices. This paper debates these issues of sustainability at Smile of Angkor. The over-commercialized tourism event offers performers high salaries and works with established Cambodian artists in Siem Reap to correct inconsistencies in technique and story. celia.tuchman-rosta@email.ucr.edu (W-95)

 

TUOMEY, Zach (UNCG) Mineros and the Spill: Class Conflict, Labor Unions and Disaster. In August of 2014, a major breach occurred in one of the tailings ponds at Mexico’s largest Copper Mine, Buenavista de Cobre, Cananea, Sonora. This paper will examine relationships between unions and the mine since the early twentieth century to the present and how the workers that constitute the unions’ relationships to each other and to the mine have changed. Data on current relationships between unions and the mine will come from interviews with farmers and workers along the Rio Sonora since the government broke the strike and the spill occurred. zdtuomey@uncg.edu (S-35)


TURNER, Rory (Goucher Coll) Friends/ Subjects/ Partners?: Folklife, Anthropology, and Communities. American public folklore and folklife programs at their best are grounded in ethnography, collaboration, and partnership with cultural communities interested in sustaining the relational ontologies and forms of expression that are constitutive of their distinctiveness in contemporary contexts. Bridging the arts and the humanities, these programs create public value by reaching diverse communities with resources, recognition, and support. In this discussion, I draw from experiences in founding and leading the Maryland Traditions program and the MA in Cultural Sustainability at Goucher College and consider how folklife programs differ in methodology and goals from applied anthropology interventions, and consider lessons both professional communities could learn from one another. rory.turner@goucher.edu (W-35)

 

TUSING, Cari (U Arizona) Opa Ore Ka’aguy (Our Forests Are Gone): Collaborative Reforestation in Northern Paraguay. Deforestation rates in Paraguay are the highest in the world. Paraguay’s Atlantic forest is merely 7% its original size. I partnered with Paĩ Tavyterã Guarani to support their reforestation efforts during fieldwork. This paper critically analyzes the collaborative process of pitching a communal reforestation project. The project impacts Paĩ conceptions of space, forest, and ownership. I examine how Paĩ both maintain and modify these concepts through their reforestation practice. Regarding the fall-out of practical assumptions made in development practice about “communities” and “communal land,” I argue for a historical and relational understanding of what a community is, or could be. ctusing@email.arizona.edu (F-13)

 

TYNES, Brendane (Columbia U) Call It Out by Name: An Ethnography of Sexual Violence and the ‘Ways We Cope.’ The sexually violent experiences of Black women are rarely discussed without resorting to tropes about their superhuman strength and their innate ability to endure violence. Where traditional academic forms of writing may fall short, poetry allows the ethnographer to capture and to contextualize the nexus of pain and healing without painting the picture of an impermeable Black woman or a constantly suffering one. This paper explores the ethnographic resource of poetry and the uses of spoken word as a medium to express the totality of experiences of the Black female college-aged survivor. bat2131@columbia.edu (S-14)