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The Politics of “Post-conflict”: On the Ground in South Asia

I am pleased to announce a new open access Cultural Anthropology Hot Spots forum, featuring essays from 14 scholars using “post-conflict” as a lens on Afghanistan, Kashmir, Nepal, and Sri Lanka. Co-edited by Sara Shneiderman and me, with contributions from Mona Bhan, Vivian Choi, Noah Coburn, Anila Daulatzai, Thushara Hewage, Dhana Hughes, Heather Hindman, Dan […]

Queen Elizabeth II’s 1961 visit to Nepal: What can a retrospective view tell us about the present?

This is a great video to get a sense of  how Nepal was framed for the British public in the early sixties. You can see where the roots of certain essentialisms came from, especially Nepal as an exotic Shangri-La that is “friendly to the west but holding jealously to its own standards of values and […]

“Are Sherpa Guides Safe?”: The Risks of Uncritical Orientalism

There has been a lot written about the fight that broke out on Everest on April 27th between three elite alpinists and Sherpa mountaineers. The situation came at a bad time and brought a lot of unwelcome press during the 60 year anniversary  of Tenzing Norgay and Edmund Hillary’s Everest summit. The Guardian’s headline aptly captures […]

Kathmandu Becoming a (Post) Modern City: Road Expansion Project

I’ve been in Kathmandu for a week.  It’s changed quite a bit since I was last here in 2011. The most striking thing is the road expansion project. It’s a sorely needed infrastructure overhaul to deal with the rapid increase in private vehicle ownership.  The project has had mixed results, creating the effect of a […]