Archive for November, 2010

Chapter 3 v2 now online!

Just a quick note to let a few interested parties know that Chapter 3 v2 has been posted. The thesis is coming around second base now and well on its way home. The next chapter, “Making Research Accessible”, needs to pull together quite a few issues. Looking at the Open Access debate, chapter 4 will build on the publishing challenges created by the changing audiences of anthropological research that were discussed in chapter 2 (need for collaboration with people involved in research, need for interdisciplinary access, and the need for “public engagement”).  It will also explore the different forms of OA publishing – OA journals, self-archiving (websites and repositories), and the copyright issues that come with them.

Speaking of anthropology repositories, the Mana’o anthropology archive, which I will be discussing in this next chapter, has reopened its doors! Hopefully it’s website will soon rank higher than the “Shuttering Mana’o” post that currently ranks #1 on Google (if you search for Mana’o and anthropology).

Once the need for open access to research has been established, the thesis will turn against itself, looking at the ethics of conducting research and sharing the knowledge gained openly. Having argued for an “open” anthropology, and for “open” access to research, the thesis will explore how “openness” is a problem, and it will try to do justice to the thoughts and opinions of anthropologists who are not publishing Open Access, and/or who have no desire to maintain a presence online.

Chapter 3 wordle included to make the giant runonsentence a little more 2.0
Wordle: Ethnography and the Internet

Moving along

I’m working to build back some momentum, and I really appreciate the interest and encouragement others have shared recently – it worked – things are starting to roll. Coherently? Perhaps not, but I’ll take what I can get.

A big thanks to Alexandre Enkerli, Max Forte, Jeremy, Lorenz Khazaleh, and Socect, who have helped dig chapter 2 out of its grave. It still has all sorts of issues and I still want/need to rewrite it, but I’ve come to the realization this thing isn’t going to be perfect, and rather than blame myself, I’m going to blame its nature. A thesis is meant to suck. That’s why people don’t read them, and that’s why people don’t usually share them. So I apologize for breaking with tradition, and thank you to those who have bothered to read it – even if it made no sense whatsoever, having far too many run on – and brutally hyphenated – sentences.  I’m pretty sure however, that I could shrink the chapter into 2 pages and do the world a favour.

Instead of spamming the blog with the drafts, I’ll just link to the permanent pages from now on when there is something new up there. This hopefully will make room to post some thoughts about how the project has gone, what sacrifices I made in terms of my own standards to get here, and if all goes well some discussions about everything else that has gone on in the past year. After traveling through Mexico and Sri Lanka I spent a fair bit of time hanging out in traditional anthropological settings. i talked politics, spoke with all sorts of people in marginalized war torn communities, and well, decided to write about the Internet and open access publishing! It’s been quite the journey – and along the way I met a lot of very helpful individuals. Hello Brent of Zipolite. No I haven’t read the 100 references you wrote down for me to include in this thesis. I have the list and I’m hoping to read one or two more of them before I hand this thing in.

I also ran into a few vegetarian and vegan activists active in academia. Hello Cornelius and Masala Meatballs! Food, farming, and animal cruelty are an easy research project for me to get behind. I can see joining the food and ethics academic debates if I ever successfully complete this thesis. Or I’ll get a job. Anyways, I’ll finish it first and figure out the big picture later.

The Introduction remains the same.

Chapter 2v3 has been updated.

Chapter 3 draft is now up. It’s missing a few sections, but its a start.


In other related news,

As I struggle to complete this thesis, a friend of mine very active in the undergrad program recently posted some thoughts about his future. He’s a passionate undergraduate anthropology student who wasn’t accepted into any graduate programs. He’s applying for *any* kind of work to pay off his student loan, and feeling exceptionally frustrated about the future. I can’t help but feel terrible feeling ambivalent about academia. Then again, I’ve quite enjoyed it so I won’t worry about troubling facts. Questions about my own future have probably played into my slow as !@#! writing style. I realize everyone who finished there degree already knew exactly what they wanted to do with it. I have never enjoyed that clarity!

Thankfully, his enthusiasm and frustration felt hitting a roadblock, have motivated my ass to get this thesis done. I’ve enjoyed my time and its time to move along so some of the more eager can join the fun. I just can’t believe they’d turn down someone who is actually that passionate about the subject. Finding someone who will talk anthropology 24/7 in the hallways of your school is not easy!!! don’t turn em away people!

Revisiting the runon sentence. Chapter 2. v3

Big thanks to Jeremy and Socect who helped motivate the next round of editing and corrections. I apologize for drafting such spam online, and did my best to cut some of the bs out of the previous version. Ended up adding more though. Can’t help it! Again, comments I’ve received about this chapter will be included in the following chapter in a section “introducing commentary”  (perhaps slightly edited for space).

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