Anthropology

Cholon 1670s to 1879 – from frontier settlement to early colonial city

Ho Chi Minh City is the biggest city in southern Vietnam. Histories of the city focus on District 1, or Saigon, from being a base for Vietnamese southward expansion, to a capital city of French Cochinchina and South Vietnam. The overwhelming bias towards Saigon assumes that, by having the longest history, it was representative of the greater metropolitan region. However, an equally old area existed alongside Saigon, following different historical developments. This is District 5, popularly known as Cholon.

Film screening: Two Seasons: Multispecies Medicine in Mongolia

Herding families in the Khangai Mountains of Mongolia live in extreme climatic conditions and are crucially reliant on their herd animals for survival. This multispecies-based filmic analysis engages with more-than-human sociality and perceptions towards other beings. The concept of one’s homeland (nutag) and a strong sense of place are crucially important to herders. The documentary focuses on three different locations, or homelands in Mongolia, filmed in spring and then again in autumn (hence the title ‘Two Seasons’).

Singing in Life’s Twilight: Constructing Rhythms of Elderly Time through Serious Karaoke

In February 2016, I arrived in Osaka, Japan to conduct a year-long field study at karaoke classrooms and karaoke kissas. These were two kinds of venues known in Japan for attracting elderly working-class fans of enka and kayōkyoku, popular music genres that had their heyday in the 1970s and early 1980s, but are now considered outdated symbols of a wholesome “Japanese tradition”.

Ways of Baloma: Rethinking Magic and Kinship from the Trobriands by Mark S. Mosko

All are welcome to the launch of Professor Mark S. Mosko's latest book.

Bronislaw Malinowski’s path-breaking research in the Trobriand Islands shaped much of modern anthropology’s disciplinary paradigm. Yet many conundrums remain. For example, Malinowski asserted that baloma spirits of the dead were responsible for procreation but had limited influence on their living descendants in magic and other matters, claims largely unchallenged by subsequent field investigators, until now.

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Updated:  7 July 2017/Responsible Officer:  Director, Culture, History & Language/Page Contact:  CHL webmaster