Hairy Connections

Goldsmiths anthropologist, Emma Tarlo, joined forces with designer Alix Bizet and children from Sen8 for an afternoon exploring the world of hair. The afternoon began with a visit to the exhibition, Material Contemplations in Cloth and Hair, at the Constance Howard Gallery, curated by Emma Tarlo and Janis Jefferies. The children enjoyed feeling different types of hair (yak, dog, cat, camel and human!) and had fun trying on hair nets and testing the amazing strength of human hair rope. They saw images of hair work in India and China and learned about how hair is recycled in those countries before going on to join Alix Bizet for a hands on workshop where they learned to make felt from human hair. It was a lively, loud and enjoyable collaboration for all involved!

Emma Tarlo, has also curated an exhbition, Hair! Human Stories which will avilable to see at The Library Space in Battersea from 7 June 201. More informaiton about this can be found on the departmental events page.



Waiting for Elijah

Former Research graduate, Safet HadziMuhamedović has published his book Waiting for Elijah: Time and Encounter in a Bosnian Landscape. For more information about Safet’s book you can find an introduction to it here.

About Waiting for Elijah

Waiting for Elijah is an intimate portrait of time-reckoning, syncretism, and proximity in one of the world’s most polarized landscapes, the Bosnian Field of Gacko. Centered on the shared harvest feast of Elijah’s Day, the once eagerly awaited pinnacle of the annual cycle, the book shows how the fractured postwar landscape beckoned the return of communal life that entails such waiting. This seemingly paradoxical situation—waiting to wait—becomes a starting point for a broader discussion on the complexity of time set between cosmology, nationalism, and embodied memories of proximity.




Workshops available for students!

Next week, the Academic Skills Centre will be holding a whole host of events to get you ready for the exam period. Such; Getting Started with Revision, How to Paraphrase and many more. For more information please download the poster below:

Coming Up Next Week (1)

On the Ground at Grenfell

On Monday 29th January 2018, Alice Elliot, Department of Anthropology, organised a special film screening of On the Ground at Grenfell which was followed by a Q&A with 3 of the filmmakers, Samiah Anderson, Swarzy Macaly, and Nendie Pinto-Duschinsky. On the Ground at Grenfell is a film made by 9 young people, all of whom are survivors, local residents and volunteers.

At the time of Grenfell, Stowe Films (a collective of filmmakers who met at The Stowe Youth Club 10 years ago) were making a film about the closure of the youth club when the Grenfell Tower broke out in fire, causing 71 deaths and leaving many injured and homeless. The fire directly affected members of the team therefore, they began recording testimonies of survivors, residents and volunteers, reporting and capturing unedited recordings of the atmosphere after the fire. It became the filmmakers mission to capture what the media were failing to- to give a voice to survivors and give recognition to the true heroes following on from events that took place after the fire.

To find out more about this project please visit –

The Department would like to give special thanks to all of the filmmakers and participants of the documentary and to Samiah Anderson, Swarzy Macaly, and Nendie Pinto-Duschinsky for joining us for the screening at Goldsmiths.

‘Frequency, duration and medium of advertisements for gambling…’

You can find Professor Rebecca Cassidy’s paper titled Frequency, duration and medium of advertisements for gambling and other risky products in commercial and public service broadcasts of English Premier League football online here.

Abstract for Rebecca’s paper: There is concern in the media and among public health professionals about the proliferation of advertisements for gambling and other risky products during sporting broadcasts and its potential impact on vulnerable groups including children and young people.

Four Wins for Anthropology Staff!

This week, four members of staff from the Department of Anthropology each won a prize at the distinguished American Anthropological Association (AAA) Annual Conference, which was held in Washington.

Professor Victoria Goddard was awarded AAA Society for the Anthropology of Work Book Prize 2017 for Work and Livelihoods. History, Ethnography and Models in Times of Crisis (co-edited by Victoria Goddard & Susana Narozky), Abingdon OXON and New York: Routledge. This edited volume presents a global range of ethnographic case studies to explore the ways in which local and global actors respond to the effects of industrial restructuring, the global crisis, growing unemployment and precarity in the workplace. The reorganization and resignification of work is understood within broader processes of capital flows and their localized effects, reflected in the shifting value attached to place and space and reflected in notions of personal and collective worth. The chapters show how multi-scalar processes shape lives and livelihoods, while at also generating different conditions of possibility for individual resistance and collective action. The edited collection draws on research funded by an EU FP7 collaborative project led by Goldsmiths (“MEDEA – Models and their Effects on Development paths: an Ethnographic and Comparative Approach to Knowledge Transmission and Livelihood Strategies”), and on the contributions presented at the project conference, which was also the basis for an earlier volume (Industry and work in contemporary capitalism.  Global models, local lives?, Abingdon OXON and New York, 2015).

Professor Emma Tarlo was awarded Victor Turner Prize for Ethnographic Writing 2017  by the Society for Humanistic Anthropology for Entanglement: The Secret Lives of Hair, Oneworld 2016. The book is about the intimate and international life of human hair which forms part of a billion dollar global industry. Tracking the journeys of hair across India, China, Myanmar, Senegal, the United States and Europe, Tarlo meets the many people whose livelihoods, hopes and desires are bound up in hair.  Hair is no respector of boundaries. It weaves unashamedly between public and private and across continents, becoming entangled in religion, politics, economics, aesthetics and even food. This all too human fibre acts as a conduit for addressing the vicissitudes of human life. For more information about the book, see review by Aotcpress or interview with Emma on Infringe.

Dr Adom Philogene Heron was awarded the AAA Society for Medical Anthropology Council on Anthropology and Reproduction (CAR), Graduate Student Paper Prize (submitted in 2017 before Adom graduated) for “When Blood Speaks”: Naming the Father and the ‘mystics’ of Kinship in Dominica, Lesser Antilles. Adom’s essay explores the ‘problem’ of ambiguous paternity in Dominica, by examining the ways in which ‘blood speaks’ (as the local aphorism puts it) through children and father’s bodies, to mystically reveal or deny relatedness throughout their lives. Adom would like to thank Sussex’s anthropology department for comments on a draft given at their departmental seminar in early 2017.

Sarah Howard was awarded AAA Society for the Anthropology of Food and Nutrition (SAFN) – Christine Wilson Award (Graduate Student) for Coffee and the State in Rural Ethiopia. Coffee drinking is fundamental to social life in Ethiopia. Based on research in eastern Amhara Region between 2011 and 2015, this paper explores the omnipresent buna ceremony during which coffee is prepared and served, and its role in the lives of rural government workers as an occasion for building group solidarity as protection against the hardships they face. While Ethiopian society is commonly portrayed as highly authoritarian and hierarchical, this ethnographic account of the social lives of low-level officials complicates the picture of a strict divide between state and society, and is a contribution to calls for attention to the ways in which material practices continually constitute the state as a reality. Coffee and the State in Rural will be published in Anthropology Matters 18/1, 2018 and in the meantime is on 

Photos from AAA Annual Conference

Emma Tarlo

Far right Victoria Goddard & second on left Susana Narotzky

Sarah Howard


Anthropology Alumni Nominated for Award

Former students from MA Visual Anthropology have been nominated for 2017 British Independent Film Awards (BIFA) Award for the Discovery Award for Even When I Fall. The film tells the incredible story of Circus Kathmandu, Nepal’s first and only circus, set up by survivors of child trafficking to Indian circuses. The film was directed by Sky Neal and Kate McLarnon and produced by Elhum Shakerifar.

Winners of the 2017 BIFA Awards will be announced on Sunday 10th December.

Beyond Myself – Exhibition Launch

On Sunday 3rd December the exhibition, Beyond Myself- Filipino migrant’s investments in Philippine futures launched at Goldsmiths, University of London. The launched involved talks, collaborative discussions and performances. Thank you to those who joined us and to our special guests who were:

His Excellency, Ambassador Antonio M Lagdameo who was accompanied by Second Secretary and Consul, Rommel Romato, Professor Patrick Flores (Vargas Museum, UP Diliman), Councillor Jimi Adefiranye and his consort Sandra, Professor David Oswell, Pro-Warden Research & Enterprise, Goldsmiths, Councillor Obajimi Adefiranye, Chair of Lewisham Council, Mr Rafael Maramag of Kanlungan Filipino Consortium and Ms Cielo Esperanza of Filipino Domestic Workers Association

Beyond Myself is an exhibition which stems from community-based art events and collaborative methodologies of exhibition making and research to raise and address questions about the welfare of Filipino migrants in London and Hong Kong and their contributions to national development in their home country.

Participating Artists and Artistic Organisations

  • Nathalie Dagmang, London & Manila
  • Members of the Migrant Domestic Workers Organisation in London
  • Guhit Kulay, Hong Kong
  • Migrant domestic workers in Hong Kong
  • Voices of Women Media
  • Carpelita B.Carag and Rowena E. Brioso, Hong Kong
  • Jorge B Vargas Msuseum

This exhibition stems from the AHRC Funded project Curating Development: Filipino migrants’ investment in Philippine futures. The project is based on partnerships between academic institutions and third sector organisations in and across the UK, Hong Kong and the Philippines.

The three academic partners are Goldsmiths, University of London, Department of Anthropology– Mark Johnson, Principal Investigator and Gabriela Nicolescu, Research Fellow, Keele University – Deirdre McKay, Co-Investigator and The University of Hong Kong- Maggy Lee, Co-Investigator.

Our non-academic partners are Susan Cueva and Rafael Joseph Maramag from Kanlungan, a London based charitable consortium consisting of six Filipino community organisations working for the welfare and interests of the Filipino community in Britain and Lenlen Mesina and Lucinda Pike, from Enrich, the leading Hong Kong charity promoting the economic empowerment of migrant domestic workers.

Marla Asis from the Scalabrini Migration Center in Manila is our final partner whose organisation acts as an important bridge between migrants, researchers, third sector organisations and policy makers in the Philippines in advocating for migrant rights and welfare.

Beyond Myself is open to the public and will be running until 31st January along the Kingsway Corridor in the Richard Hoggart Building

Photos and videos from the launch: