An Education into Anthropology via the Interwebs

It is a commonplace to direct someone interested in computer programming to one of the wondrous websites devoted to learning to code or, even better, directly to the source code for a favorite program.  In that spirit, I will take you on a brief tour of my favorite anthropological resources on the interwebs. I make no promise that what follows is in anyway a comprehensive or objective view, only that I have found these things useful. They also tend, like I think the best anthropology does, toward places where people are actively working through thorny problems.


Alan MacFarlane’s Website and Youtube Account:

One of my favorite videos on the internet is Alan MacFarlane discussing Frazier’s indexing technique in The Golden Bough. As well, his website is an excellent resource, a bit like walking into a dusty old office, which will make sense when you click on the link. And his collection of interviews with anthropologists is not to be missed. I am particularly fond of this interview with Wagner

Hervé Varenne’s Archipelago:
This is a difficult web presence to classify. It is at once a repository of papers, unfinished ideas and provocations. A living syllabus. And a home for experiments. There is also a blog


Paul Rabinow’s Collaboratory:

Rabinow has been pushing for a new mode of anthropological research based around collaboration. To further this effort he has produced an impressive collection of interlocking websites in which he and his students have been experimenting with new forms of anthropology. In a move foreshadowed by his earlier work, Rabinow has also pushed and pulled on the form of his work.


XdoctorbutcherX’s Collection of Tim Ingold Lectures on YouTube:

This person has collected an impressive number of Ingold’s best talks.  Including my .

MIT Opencourseware:

Though the computer science and electrical engineering classes get all the press, MIT has a nice collection of anthropology classes as well. They tend to be slanted towards the anthropology of technology/science, so proceed with caution or abandon as the case may be. I have found the course sites extremely useful for formulating reading lists and bibliographies.