As OAC tip toes toward demise this August, you may be wondering where to get your daily Anthropology fix. Savage Minds is almost always good value. PopAnth is fun. Turn to Geek Anthropology for everything about geeks and peeks at pop culture. Aeon Magazine is organized in terms of classic anthropological topics: World Views, Nature and Cosmos, Being Human, Living Together, Altered States, and the writing is usually terrific. But for me, a social anthropologist trained in the classic British mode, the creme de la creme is HAU. On other sites, I find pointers to interesting stuff. Reading HAU I am at the mother load.
Volume 4, No. 1 of HAU:Journal of Ethnographic Theory is a treasure, filled with richly nuanced debate. The special section How does anthropology know?, edited by Bob W. White and Kiven Strohm, and the colloquia The ontological French turn, edited by John Kelly are superb examples of conversations at a level rarely found on the Internet. And Tim Ingold's contribution, That's Enough About Ethnography is a marvelous, i.e., thoughtful, rant about the use and abuse of one of anthropology's most treasured self-descriptions.
Others may have their own favorites. If so, please share them while we can. For me, it's HAU. Now.
I gave informal notice that we are planning to wind up the OAC main page in its present form. But it is plain ridiculous to prance all over that page in its last month announcing that the OAC is dying. The reason for delay in making a formal announcement is that we are working hard behind the scenes to develop the forms in which the OAC will continue. Everything that has been stored here since 2009 will be made available in a non-interactive archive. The OAC Press and seminars will continue in a new format that involves moving to another level of publishing. OAC Facebook has acquired 5,000 members in 18 months and offers a more lively (and more truly global) way of sharing news and opinions. It doesn't take much effort to grab the headlines prematurely in this way. Those of us who care responsibly for the OAC, as before, are working invisibly to ensure its future.
A great idea and a noble purpose have been run into the ground by over-elaborate design and lack of management. "Let a thousand flowers bloom" is a wonderful dream. Turning it into the equivalent of a formal English garden without a crew of gardeners willing to spread fertiliser and eliminate invasive weeds?Just arbitrary censorship when the Owner gets pissed? The natural impulse is to raise a middle finger.
Even so, sincerely, best of luck with whatever survives. Annoyance does not erase the gratitude I feel to OAC's creators.