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Tag: political agency

The Political Agency of Refugees

Cindy_Horst_tcm249-762996By Matea Curcovic Westendorp        Dr. Cindy Horst is an anthropologist located in Oslo, Norway where she works as a senior researcher at the research institute PRIO. Her main focus for the past 20 years has been on refugees – from spending two years in a refugee camp in Kenya researching Somali refugees, to more recently collecting life stories from refugees residing in Oslo.

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Yoga in Cuba: Trojan horse or subtle trick?


By one of our former MA-students


Post 1959, Cuban people have been muted about the harshness of their daily life conditions and incited to praise the revolution achievements of Fidel Castro’s regime. In anthropological terms, we would say that their agency was constrained: freedom of thought, of speech and association were restricted to the extent that people traded their own critical sense and capacity for revolt for a collective revolutionary mentality that was aimed at providing them with a better future.
Nevertheless, in the face of the 1990 economic crisis, the Cuban people’s awareness has begun to crack: as a way to compensate for the new state inefficiency, an increasing number of people have started to rely on themselves rather than on the state structure. It is in this context of agency versus structure that my research about the Cuban version of Iyengar yoga took place.

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