Recent Posts

Anthropology Comp Exams 2015
Published 5/21/2015 in Bama Anthro Blog Network
Author Ian W. Brown
Moments from Undergraduate Honors Day 2015
Published 5/21/2015 in Bama Anthro Blog Network
Author Christopher Lynn
Photos by C. Lynn and I. Brown read more ❯
Student and Faculty Awards
Published 5/20/2015 in Bama Anthro Blog Network
Author Christopher Lynn
Numerous students and faculty were recognized for achievements and commitment this spring. Several undergraduates mentored by Anthropology faculty were recognized at the annual Undergraduate Research and Creativity Conference as follows: Mark Ortiz, Honorable Mention for Oral Presentations in the Fine Arts and Humanities division (David Meek, faculty mentor); Taylor Lawhon, 4th Place for Oral Presentations in the Social Sciences division (Ian Brown, faculty mentor); Rachel Madey, 1st Place for in Emerging Scholars Fine Arts and Humanities Division and International Focus (Kathy Oths, faculty mentor), and Sommer Hallquist and Madeline Anscombe, 2nd Place in Emerging Scholars Fine Arts and Humanities division (Ian Brown, faculty mentor). This year's recipients of David and Elizabeth DeJarnette Endowed Scholarships in Anthropology are doctoral candidates Lynn... read more ❯
Physiological Research at Head Start Creates Opportunities for UA Students
Published 5/20/2015 in Bama Anthro Blog Network
Author Sarah Morrow
The past year marked the beginning of data collection for Dr. Jason DeCaro’s multiyear Head Start research project. This interdisciplinary project focuses on child development during the transitions from prekindergarten through first grade. Dr. DeCaro joins Drs. Ansley Gilpin and John Lochman of the Psychology Department and Dr. Caroline Boxmeyer of the Psychiatry and Behavioral Medicine, as well as community partners from the Community Service Programs of West Alabama. Funded by the Administration for Children and Families (ACF), Power PATH is an intervention program designed to improve emotional, behavioral, social, and cognitive wellbeing. Included in Power PATH is PATHS, a supplemental preschool curriculum that offers children techniques for dealing with difficult emotions and processing emotions in appropriate ways in the classroom. The addition of parent intervention meetings, adapted from the Coping Power program,... read more ❯
Anthro Club Hosts Guest Lectures & FABBLs
Published 5/7/2015 in Bama Anthro Blog Network
Author Christopher Lynn
The Department's Friday Afternoon Brown Bag Lunch (FABBL) talks commenced September 12 with PhD student Erik Porth's presentation, "Some Preliminary Results from the 2012 Fall Field School Mound P Excavations." Erik presented an overview of excavations at Mound P from the Moundville III phase, 1400-1520 AD. Some of Erik's preliminary results include identification of several different ceramics found at the west flank trench and an analysis of the bucket auger assemblages. Thanks to the Anthropology club and Dr. Oths, we were able to welcome Dr. Eileen Anderson-Fye on September 18 to discuss some of her research with the faculty and students. Dr. Anderson-Fye gave an informal talk titled “Education, Well-being and Rapid Socio-cultural Change: A Longitudinal Mixed-Methods Investigation of Girls’ Secondary Education in Belize” to students in the department, which gave them the opportunity... read more ❯
10 Things You May Not Know about Missy Sartain
Published 5/7/2015 in Bama Anthro Blog Network
Author Christopher Lynn
Missy Sartain joined the department on March 22, 2010 as an Office Associate II (we prefer Demi-Goddess) and is the beautiful face at the front desk in the Anthropology Department Office. Before joining us, Missy spent 6 years as a legal secretary, the last 2 years in domestic law. As the proud mother of three boys, she found all the domestic law conflicts around children unpleasant. She finds life in the Anthropology Department much calmer. Since we all regularly stop to chat with Missy, you might think you know a lot about her, but we recently asked her to share 10 things you may not know: "I was born in Anchorage, Alaska. I've lived in Germany. I'm about to celebrate my 50th birthday. I want to visit San Diego before I die. I am a huge NASCAR (Go, Dale, Jr.!) and Alabama softball and football fan (well, you probably all know that). I like to fish and sit... read more ❯
Cultural & Genetic Influences on Individual Well-being in Urban Brazil
Published 5/6/2015 in Bama Anthro Blog Network
Author Christopher Lynn
Since the mid-1980s, Dr. William Dressler and colleagues have been examining the influence of culture on individual well-being through pioneering the cultural consonance approach. Cultural consonance measures how successful people are in achieving the broad goals that are collectively valued in their society, especially goals across the life-span (for example, creating a satisfying family life). Dr. Dressler recently completed research funded by the National Science Foundation aimed to replicate and extend research on gene-environment interactions and subjective well-being among persons of diverse socioeconomic backgrounds in an urban center in Brazil. Research in the past decade has shown that individuals with different genetic profiles are variably influenced by stressful environmental events and circumstances in terms of their sense of subjective well-being, including feelings of depression. While intriguing results have been observed, the range of environmental events and circumstances that have been investigated has been relatively narrow. A major goal of Dr. Dressler's recent research was to understand how different kinds of environmental experience... read more ❯
Opportunities for Giving
Published 5/4/2015 in Bama Anthro Blog Network
Author Christopher Lynn
We are grateful to the many former students, colleagues, and other donors who made possible the establishment of our newest scholarship opportunity for our students, the "Jim Knight." According to the resolution, they "contributed $13,687.36 to The Board of Trustees of The University of Alabama to honor Dr. Knight and to promote the education of students in the College of Arts and Sciences at The University of Alabama." This was matched by $12,500 in Capstone Foundation funds as directed by the College of Arts and Sciences to be used for the same purpose. To ensure the continuity of this and other efforts to fund our students and programs, we humbly welcome tax-free donations toward the Knight Endowed Scholarship or any of the following initiatives: The Allen R. Maxwell Endowed Anthropology Scholarship is awarded to support graduate student research in the areas of ethnography or linguistic anthropology. Established through a bequest from... read more ❯
Challenges of Mixed-Method Research
Published 4/30/2015 in Biocultural Systematics
Author Jo Weaver
Reposted from Anthropology News April 2015 column. Mixed-method research involves inherent challenges that make it at once more gratifying and more difficult than traditional single-method approaches. By “mixed-method,” I am referring to studies that employ a mixture of qualitative and quantitative methods. This approach is a hallmark of most biocultural research, and those of us committed to this approach believe that the triangulation of multiple methods is a more effective way of capturing human experience than an approach that attempts to represent only quantitative trends or only qualitative individual experience. Mixed methods also have the potential to make our work more intelligible to those outside of anthropology who transact primarily in the quantitative—those, for instance, in public health, psychiatry, or sociology. Mixed-method studies are fundamentally challenging because they often take twice the work and require methodological expertise in multiple areas: Instead of just conducting an epidemiological survey to learn about the... read more ❯
What’s Biological about Biocultural Research? (Part 1)
Published 4/30/2015 in Biocultural Systematics
Author Jason DeCaro
Reposted from Anthropology News February 2015 column. Our January column from Bill Dressler harkened to 2005 when, concerned about the absence of an explicit theory of culture in much biocultural research, Bill had written a piece in Ethos entitled “What’s Cultural about Biocultural Research?” While not all of us follow Bill’s approach to the letter, his perspective has been influential in our Biocultural Medical Anthropology PhD program. One could ask a parallel question: What’s biological about biocultural research? I attend theHuman Biology Association (HBA) meetings on a near-annual basis and encounter more researchers there who consider themselves biocultural than at the American Anthropological Association (as a percentage and a raw number, despite the fact that HBA is much smaller). Nearly all human biologists consider their work biocultural whether or not it hews to Bill’s definition, because human evolution is irreducibly biocultural, and human biologists are interested in that. And,... read more ❯

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