Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Diary for 12 March to 18th March 2009

THURSDAY 12th March- Celebrating women filmmakers

There are only a couple more days for you to catch some breathtaking films made by women around the world. The Bird's Eye View Festival is taking place in several venues around London at the BFI's Institute of Contemporary Arts and the Gate and at picturehouse cinemas all over the UK. To feast your fantasies or alternative egos, this year's festival's retrospective focus is on female seduction on screen: Vamps, Vixens and Femme Fatales! To find out the full programme and the list of venues visit this website.

FRIDAY 13th March- Imponderabilia

University of Cambrdige's Social Anthropology Society (CUSAS) has succeeded in developing a multidisciplinary, anthropological student journal. Impoderabilia is a journal which "tries to blur and overcome the boundaries between institutions, disciplines, theories and between undergraduate and postgraduates". The journal is open to contributions from students both within and outside the UK. Tonight is the launch event at Pembroke College, University of Cambridge, Old Library at 5pm. There will be a panel discussion with a keynote speech by Marilyn Strathern, followed by a drinks reception and dinner. The dinner costs 10 pounds. For further information about the journal and how to contribute, please email:

SATURDAY 14th March- Social Sciences for everyone!

If you have not yet had a chance to go out and attend some of the free social science events that are taking places all over the UK as part of this year's ESRC's Festival of Social Science 2009, I would strongly recommend that you do so. There's a fantastic range of films, talks, events, dealing with topics such as responses to climate change, grandparenting, citizenship, the health and benefits of organic food. You can download the full programme and list of venues for the festival here. Alternatively, if you are near Fitzroy Sq. I have a few extra programmes at the Royal Anthropological Institute if you would like to drop in, and pick one up!

SUNDAY 15th March- Beautifying the world- one plot at a time..

For those of you who were able to make it to Exploring Food, Connecting Communities last Sunday at the British Museum, you would have had an opportunity to listen to Richard Reynolds speak about guerilla gardening and the world of illicit cultivation. Richard's moto is "Let's fight the filth with forks and flowers". Although not an anthropologist by trade, Richard's book Guerilla Gardening, and his blog express an anthropological take on the communities around the world which are practicing illicit cultivation of unused lands, exploring why and how they do it, the challenges they face, and the results they achieve. Through one case study of guerilla gardening you can find out a lot about particular geopolitics of a given area. For more information or to join a group visit Richard's website.

MONDAY 16th March- Is uniqueness in the eye of the beholder?

Today I am going to try out an online activity which will allow me to explore the unique aspects of myself and my body in comparison to other people. For the National Science and Engineering Week 2009, the Wellcome Trust Centre for Human Genetics at the University of Oxford, has devised an online activity which allows you to explore different characteristics of yourself from different body shapes, to the ability to smell flowers, which some scientists think are controlled mostly by your DNA. You can have a go by logging on to: I am hoping to find out new unknown secrets about myself... perhaps some ultimate powers of some sort..

TUESDAY 17th March- Food and Architecture

Most of us in our everyday lives and thoughts about food, do not (I assume) think of architecture or urban development. Yet, when you listen to Carolyn Steel speak about her research for her book Hungry City, and the ways in which cities like London have been developed and shaped by food, the connections become apparent and obvious and you start to wonder why you don't think of these relationships more often. Hungry City, explores "food's journey from land to city, through market and supermarket, kitchen and table, waste dump and back again, to show how food affects all our lives and impacts the planet". To find out more about the book, hear excerpts read by Carolyn and learn more about her biography, visit Carolyn's wonderful website.

WEDNESDAY 18th March- An edible outdoor adventure

Those of you who were at The Social Life of Plants event at the Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew last Saturday would have had a chance to see the amazing display of wild edible plants and herbs that Professor Gordon Hillman and his colleagues, which they collected from Sussex. Those of you who live near the South Downs Way or have access to other green areas of the countryside, might be passing some edible treats every time you are walking your dog or going for a weekend stroll. If you are interested to learn more about these outdoor greens, there will be a Wild Food and Ancient Plant Use course at the University of Sussex which will commence on 25th April 2009. For more information or to book phone: 01273 678527.