The promise of an anarchist anthropology: the three burials of the anarchist project - Natalia Buier

"...we went looking for proof that  Graeber is a liberal and what we came across was a monumental load of bullshit."

In this article, anthropologist Natalia Buier discusses David Graeber’s proposition of an anarchist anthropology. She focuses on three key issues: Graeber’s understanding of ethnography and its role within the politics of anthropology, his reading of the anarchist tradition, and his involvement with the Occupy Wall Street movement as a concrete example of the limitations of the political project of an anarchist anthropology. The argument of the article is that Graeber’s representation of the discipline of anthropology, together with his partial reading of the anarchist tradition, run counter to a political and analytic focus that centralizes the notions of class and exploitation.

Full text of article available below as a PDF.

Quick introduction from poster:
This text is an astute if not sometimes brutal critique of David Graeber's presentation of anarchism and anthropology. I think it is a necessary though sometimes problematic text for all us libcommies in the library. While some of her claims about anarchism (her apparent dismissal of the division of labor, for instance) are certainly subject to some scrutiny, all in all I deeply appreciate this critique of our comrade David as I'm sure the rest of you will. I would be very interested in hearing David's response to this analysis as well and I hope he can take the time to approach this extremely critical appraisal. - f

original citation
STUDIA UBB SOCIOLOGIA, LIX, 1, 2014, pp. 73 - 90

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Posted By

fkschulze
Jul 21 2014 19:58

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  • "In his concession that anarchism is at heart an “ideology of the diversity of ideologies”, Graeber does not fight the erroneous mainstream representations of anarchism, he reproduces the terms of the conversation as set up by the critics of anarchism.*

    Natalia Buier

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