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Ethnography Commons Roundtable: Anthropology and #HAUtalk, 20 September, 3:10-5:00pm, TTR 106

  • Victoria University of Wellington TTR 106 Te Toki a Rata Building, Kelburn Campus (map)

Ethnography Commons Roundtable: Anthropology and #HAUtalk


In this roundtable discussion we will discuss key issues arising from the recent controversy surrounding HAU: Journal of Ethnographic Theory. The controversy unfolded in June 2018 after David Graeber issued a public apology to “anyone who has been hurt by their involvement with HAU.” This was quickly followed by a flurry of activity on social media as anthropologists either (a) sought to decipher this cryptic message or (b) breathed a digital sigh of relief that the journal’s ‘open secrets’ of precarious employment, faux-open access, academic elitism and exclusion, financial mismanagement, harrassment, bullying, and intimidation had finally come to light. While much #HAUtalk remains firmly centred on HAU and demands answers and accountability from the journal, other conversations occurring on social media, at conferences, and in the hallways of anthropology programmes globally have considered how the incident reflects range of contentious issues within contemporary anthropology and academia more broadly. #HAUtalk has raised questions relating to exploitation of graduate labour, academic precarity, power and inequality, questionable publishing practices within and beyond open access journals, citational politics and what it means to #RefuseHAU, #anthrosowhite, and the neoliberal university structures we often operate within. In this roundtable we will consider these issues and discuss what the controversy means for anthropology as a discipline and perhaps what it says about the future of academia. After an initial round of speakers’ comments, the audience will be invited to contribute their own thoughts and perspectives in what we hope will be an open, challenging, and lively conversation.


Chair: Lorena Gibson


Date: Thursday 20 September

Time: 3:10-5:00pm

Venue: TTR 106, Te Toki a Rata building, Kelburn Campus, Victoria University of Wellington


The roundtable is free but places are limited, so please email to register.