invited talk

AAA Annual Meeting 2021

November 18, 2021

Baltimore, United States

Frederick Douglass: Parent of Anti-racist and Progressive Anthropology


race and racism

history of anthropology


As we commemorate 50 years of the Association of Black Anthropologists, it is incumbent to recognize that African Americans have been bearing witness, taking action, and holding scholars accountable to the truth since the very beginning of anthropology in North America. Frederick Douglass, for example, wrote a critical response to Josiah Nott’s Types of Mankind in 1854. During every twist and turn in the history of anthropology, African American scholars have taken on the responsibility to insist that anthropology be a holistic social science that combats racism and oppression and leads to a more responsive and inclusive understanding of what it means to be human. At the same time, anthropologists throughout the African Diaspora have described and analyzed how violence, power, and oppression lead to atrocities and the worst forms of inhumanity. In this panel, we take a look at a sample of African American intellectuals who were leaders in the vindication struggle, were creative and imaginative describing culture, and worked hard towards achieving a decolonized anthropology.


Transcript English (automatic)

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