As part of our “Resources for Your Summer Research” blog series, we present some of our recent titles that we think would broaden your anthropological horizons. Happy reading!

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In the Field: Life and Work in Cultural Anthropology by George Gmelch and Sharon Bohn Gmelch

“A treasure trove of fieldwork experience! Where was this book when I was trying to uncover the mysteries of ethnography? If the devil is in the details, then the Gmelches have banished him with a richly woven tapestry of insights into the questions that we all are plagued with when doing fieldwork.”—Alan Klein, author of Dominican Baseball: New Pride, Old Prejudice

“There is no better review for students of anthropology of the travails and exhilaration of ethnographic fieldwork than this examination of over forty years of their research by the indomitable and inexhaustible Gmelches.”—Thomas M. Wilson, Professor of Anthropology, Binghamton University, State University of New York


Engaged Anthropology: Politics beyond the Text by Stuart Kirsch

“As the promises of globalization unravel, and as the ecological devastation of the planet deepens, Stuart Kirsch’s persuasive call for engaged forms of anthropology becomes vital to the survival of the field as a relevant intellectual and ethical project. This is a book all social scientists must read.”—Arturo Escobar, author of Designs for the Pluriverse: Radical Interdependence, Autonomy, and the Making of Worlds 

“Kirsch asks the critical questions: Does ‘engaged’ anthropology produce good enough research? Is it good for anthropology? What generalizations does it allow beyond particular cases? This book takes a fresh look at roles anthropologists play in public affairs and political struggles.”—Francesca Merlan, author of Dynamics of Difference in Australia: Indigenous Past and Present in a Settler Country 


The Anthropology of Catholicism: A Reader edited by Kristin Norget, Valentina Napolitano, and Maya Mablin

“We have in this volume a first-rate collection of insightful essays by leading anthropologists and historians that vastly enriches the study of Catholic practice and belief. The range of work spans home, body, theology, politics, healing, gender, ethnicity, and material culture. The result is an intellectual feast worthy of the topic.”—David Morgan, Duke University

“Kristin Norget, Valentina Napolitano, and Maya Mayblin have curated a reader that both honors the canonical legacy of anthropology of religion and offers a compelling new vision for the ethnographic engagement with modern forms of religious life.”—Elizabeth Castelli, Barnard College


Scale: Discourse and Dimensions of Social Life edited by E. Summerson Carr and Michael Lempert

Available as a free open access e-book! Click the link above to download.

“E. Summerson Carr and Michael Lempert’s Scale will be a fundamental book for thinking about scalar processes and the pragmatics of scale-making in and beyond linguistic anthropology. Its engaging, readable chapters offer a range of theoretical considerations of how scales arise and work in a variety of social settings.”—Robert Oppenheim, author of Kyongju Things: Assembling Place




The Anthropology of Sport: Bodies, Borders, Biopolitics by Niko Besnier, Susan Brownell, and Thomas F. Carter

“Sports offer excitement, triumphs, tragedies—and escape from the routines of modernity. But sports also reach into the world, and the world reaches into sports. This expert trio of authors shows how this emergent field of research promises to contribute in exciting ways to the growth of global anthropological knowledge.”—Ulf Hannerz, author of Writing Future Worlds

“Comprehensive and lucid, inspiring and field-defining. Read this book and never again will you be able to deny the centrality of sport to our core anthropological concerns of body dynamics, gender, ritual, nationalism, globality, media, and more.”—William W. Kelly, Professor of Anthropology, Yale Universi


How Forests Think: Toward an Anthropology Beyond the Human by Eduardo Kohn

“What’s so welcome about Kohn’s approach is that he walks a tightrope with perfect balance: never losing sight of the unique aspects of being human, while refusing to force those aspects into separating us from the rest of the abundantly thinking world.”The Times Literary Supplement

“…A work of art… [and] an immensely refreshing alternative [for] philosophical anthropology.” — Bruno Latour, Sciences Po