Category: UIUC Alumnae/i interviews

Dr. Stanley HylandDr. Stanley Hyland will visit with us on Thursday, March 28, as a speaker in our 2012-2013 Colloquium on Engaged and Applied Anthropology. These colloquium events feature an afternoon keynote presentation to the Department and also small-group discussions among our graduate students and Dr. Hyland over lunch and dinner.

Thursday, March 28, 3:00pm, 109A Davenport Hall, Examining the Impact of Three Anthropological Figures in the Reformulation of Anthropology for the 21st Century: Developing New Approaches to Poverty Policy and Social Justice in Memphis and the Mid-South Regionkeynote presentation by Prof. Hyland.

Dr. Hyland is Professor and Head of the School of Urban Affairs and Public Policy and a member of the Department of Anthropology faculty at the University of Memphis. He received his PhD in 1977 from the University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign, and joined the faculty at the University of Memphis in 1976. Dr. Hyland has over 25 years of experience as an applied and urban anthropologist. He has focused his research on community building, particularly in its relation to grassroots economic activities. On a local level, his anthropological studies have included housing, neighborhood revitalization, new urbanism, evaluation, philanthropy, voluntary associations, and policy. On a national level, during 1989-1990, Dr. Hyland served as director of research for the Lower Mississippi Delta Development Commission, a federal commission to develop a strategic plan for economic development of the Delta for the year 2000. In addition to his research in community development, he has published numerous articles and monographs regarding neighborhood revitalization and public policy and has served on both local and national community-based advisory boards. Dr. Hyland received the 2012 Solon T. Kimball Award by the American Anthropological Association in recognition of his outstanding work in engaged and applied anthropology.

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Jon Zilberg (Ph.D., 1996) has a new position as an Affiliate Research Scholar in the Graduate School of Syarif Hidayatullah State Islamic University (in Jakarta, Indonesia). Jon will lecture, run research and writing workshops, work with graduate students and faculty conducting research on Islam, promote academic research in museums (including continuing his prior work with the Museum Istiqlal, which is effectively the National Islamic Museum), assist in grant writing with the campus Center for Advanced Studies, and build links with foreign institutions.  He will also assist in editing university publications, as the University publishes two journals (with a third underway), and all theses produced by students at the university are published as a book and online (in Indonesian). More broadly, Jon’s intellectual mandate will be to conduct and promote long-term ethnographic research on the issue of religious pluralism and the crisis of liberalism in Indonesia. Jon joins another UIUC Dept. of Anth. alum, Moeslim Abdurrahman (Ph.D., 2000), who is also on the faculty at the university.

Jon also has another new position, teaching English in the International Baccalaureate program in Grades 6 and 7 in Jakarta. Of this position, Jon writes: “I am excited for the opportunity to put into practice interdisciplinary teaching towards the next generation of Indonesian scholars.” If you’d like to get in touch with Jon about any of these projects, his e-mail address is:


French cognitive anthropologist Dan Sperber has been getting quite a lot of publicity for an article in which he and a coauthor suggest that the point of humans arguing is to argue.  The broader theory is termed the “argumentative theory of reasoning,” and is also known as the “the social brain hypothesis.”  You can read a summary here:
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