Unearthing a Fragile Root of Democracy

By Pia K. R. Beiermann, second-year student of CADS This Saturday I wake up slowly, a bit later than usual. Still in a morning fogginess best described as half-asleep, half-awake, I mindlessly open Instagram. The first thing I see is a story by Amnesty Norway that reads “It’s heart-breaking what happened in Oslo last night (…)”. Still not in a state to comprehend what I just read, I quickly open NRK, the government-owned public broadcasting company of Norway: At least two people dead and 21 hurt in a mass shooting outside the gay bar “London Pub” This year marks the …

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The Noise of Russian Silence

By Ekaterina Thor, second-year Bachelor student of Cultural Anthropology and Development Sociology  Opening our daily news feed on the 24th of February, most of probably needed a second to realize what was going on. Ukraine, a country generally outside of our daily discourse and with a conflict old enough to have been forgotten about by the general public, was suddenly on everyone`s screens and tongues. Blue and Yellow became the colours we cannot unsee anymore. Kyiv was under attack, and suddenly our attention was drifted away – two years of intensive Corona updates was left behind to follow the situation …

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There and back again

by Shunita Gerritsen With a loud, blunt clonk the ferry arrives. The gate slowly comes down while the flashing lights and loud beeping alert the impatiently waiting passengers. Almost before the way is cleared, people already pour out, while some traffic controllers in neon vests try in vain to guide the controlled chaos. Ever since I first started high school, I use the central station ferry almost every day. As a connection between the bustling city center and Amsterdam ‘Noord’, it’s the only way for bikers and pedestrians to pass the sometimes calm, sometimes rowdy waters of the IJ. With …

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Van VMBO-kader naar een master Antropologie: Het verhaal van Rayn Ramkishun

Door Zoë Tjon A Ten “Geinig, ik zal nooit weten wat die mensen hier doen, waar ze zich mee bezig houden, wat hun interesses zijn, hoe ze praten en hoe ze bewegen.” Dit dacht Rayn bij zichzelf toen hij als jongetje met de metro de VU passeerde. Het lag niet bepaald voor de hand dat hij jaren later een mastertitel in antropologie zou behalen. Hij zat op VMBO-kader en hing veel op straat in Amsterdam-West, de buurt waar hij opgroeide. Studeren leek hem toen nog te hoog gegrepen, en bovendien saai. Sinds kort heeft hij die master echter wel afgerond. …

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Podcast #3 is online! Guest: Haiyue (Fiona) Shan

In this episode, Puck de Boer talks to Haiyue (or Fiona, her English name) Shan, a PhD student at the Sociology department of VU University. From a holistic, multidisciplinary perspective, she investigates the experiences and challenges of Chinese migrant women in the Netherlands before, during and after they give birth, with a special focus on mental health and postpartum depression. Haiyue likes to experiment with podcasts and documentaries to collect data and disseminate her research outcomes. Topics in this podcast include:-Haiyue’s research, the importance of a multidisciplinary perspective and the role of anthropology within it.-Questions and challenges regarding pregnancy in …

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Opposing Views for a Shared Mission

by Sarah leBarron As I walk into Old School Amsterdam, I feel instantly at home. Coffee vapors float around me, pulling me towards the barista cart. I’m handed a steaming cup of vegan cappuccino, the almond milk infusing a slight strangeness to the flavor as I swallow, a strangeness I have come to appreciate. For some attendees of 02025’s energy breakfasts, the vegan beverages connect the theme of renewable energy back to the earth. But for others, the link to nature is minor compared to the technology itself. Though subtle, this diversity of thought in Amsterdam’s renewable energy community can …

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Lesvos, drawn in the field

From a distance we watch as desperation grows and in awe we witness how people attempt to build new shelters on harsh concrete, prepare food on windy sidewalks and fold pieces of cardboard around their sleeping children. With every cycle of brutal destruction and temporal rebuilding their worlds seem to erode further, and inevitably ours and the things we say we stand for, with it. This piece was drawn and written after witnessing the growing unrest on the island of Lesvos, Greece, in February this year. Following recent events the already fragile and tense dynamics on the island as sketched …

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Art, anthropology and authority

BY FREEK COLOMBIJN “Most anthropologists are failed novelists.” I have forgotten where I heard this quote for the first time or who said so, but it is correct that many anthropologists hope to develop their literary skills. There is perhaps not much difference between anthropologists and novelists, or artists in general. Both anthropologists and artists, or at least most of them, wish to tell something about the world and in their products recreate the world. Both anthropologists and artists begin their exploration of the world by careful observation. Quite a few anthropologists love to experiment with the form in which …

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At Europe’s Threshold – Bangladeshi Migrants in Greece

By Jessica van Vugt. This photo-essay is about Bangladeshi migrants in Athens, Greece. Using the case of the Bangladeshi migrants, I wanted to explore how the European discourse of strict immigration and asylum policies on the one hand and the growing deregulating labor markets featured by an increasing employers’ demand for cheap ‘flexible’ laborers, on the other hand, shapes the lives of economic migrants in Greece. The accounts of fifteen young Bangladeshi men together with my camera, which was always hanging on my shoulder, tell the story of how they experience, shape and navigate their lives. This photo-essay is based on that …

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‘Wasted hours in the field’ as a key to understanding the research topic

By Herbert Ploegman  Originally attributed to Winston Churchill, the statement “never waste a good crisis” has become an aforism that, by now, has been appropriated by many voices. The expression carries several layers, all of which contribute to its perceived versatility. Applying the statement to a research field in contemporary Greece may seem ironic or cynical, given the state of ‘crisis’ the country has gone through (or is currently under). Nevertheless, I feel confident enough to do this without too many scrupules. As an anthropologist having spent almost a year in Greece throughout the past few years, I believe that …

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