Re: reply to McCormack

Alx V. Dark (avd5863@IS.NYU.EDU)
Mon, 6 Feb 1995 22:54:40 -0500

On Mon, 6 Feb 1995, Mike Lieber wrote:

> > Whoa, Mr. Lieber.....chill! If you want names to be named, I can do so.
> > It's not hard. Mike Lieber....Tom McCormack....most, if not all, of us.
> So tell me, Mr. McCormack, precisely what I did and to whom? You are free to
> beat your breast to your heart's content. Whatever you say you did, I'll
> believe you, so speak for yourself, not me. What, specifically, are you
> accusing me of, and what is the evidence for your accusation?
> Mr. Lieber

Sorry to intrude on this new, interesting line of argumentation contra
Johnson, but is it necessary for you, Mike Lieber, to do wrong
"precisely" to some "whom" in order for a moral wrong to exist?
Returning to the issue, do we HAVE to name particular anthropologists in
order to establish a moral wrong? (Although if you want names and
examples, a better place to post might be NATIVE-L, not ANTHRO-L. Hmm,
that might turn up some interesting results!)

Surely no one is arguing that these wrongs of Johnsonian proportions were
created by some researcher or researcher -- this isn't exactly comparable
to blaming someone for being on a CIA payroll. These are generally
existing inequalities which our positions as researchers and the
qualities of the knowledge we produce may potentially contribute to, and
in this sense, people have exhaustively examined these relationships in
print (e.g. studying down, the politics of representation, the imposition
of research projects upon people instead of their development with
people, etc.).

And now the obvious moral retort -- name a single positive contribution
anthropology has made to the alleviation of colonialism.

______________________________ ____________________________
Alx V. Dark Department of Anthropology
internet: New York University
"Wash your brains, think 25 Waverly Place
again, double check" -- H3O New York, NY 10003 USA