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Lecture 17

ANTH 114 Lecture Notes - Lecture 17: Hopi-Tewa, Tewa Language, Language Ideology


Department
Anthropology
Course Code
ANTH 114
Professor
david
Lecture
17

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Anth-Ling Summer Session --- Lecture Seventeen
1
Anth-Ling Summer Session --- Lecture Seventeen, Friday, June 20th, 2014
Hi everyone! To make up for yesterday’s monster lecture, today’s is very short… a little
bit of me babbling about ideology, then an argument mapping (Kroskrity), and then a problem
that I would like you to consider over the weekend.
Here are a couple more reminders:
1. Looking ahead to next week, remember that the final exam will be on Friday, June
27th. I will give you more information on the format of that this weekend.
2. The two articles are available for mapping next week:
CAMERON: Due Monday, June 23rd, by 8am
LABOV: Due Wednesday, June 25th, by 8am
***Keep in mind that you will need to email me (dgerstl1@binghamton.edu) any rewrites
for these mappings by 9pm, Friday, June 27th.
These are the parts of today’s lecture:
Part One: The Ideologies of Researchers and the People They Study
Part Two: Kroskrity’s Terminology and Central Claims
Part Three: Kroskrity’s Secondary Claims and Evidence
Part Four: Assessing Kroskrity’s Use Value and Contradictions
Thanks for all your hard work this week!! - Dave

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Anth-Ling Summer Session --- Lecture Seventeen
2
Lecture Seventeen, Part One: The Ideologies of Researchers and the People They Study
In yesterday’s lecture, I left you with the possibility that ‘not everything deserves to be
called ideological’. This is primarily a methodological problem (although certainly not limited to
Linguistic Anthropology)… once researchers decides that every behavior is charged with some
profound, presupposed indexical function, they have basically subscribed to a picture of the
world that is ‘made’ by abstract concepts, not real people.
This would be tantamount to saying that (for example) every one of my behaviors
indexes (and is reinforcing) my identity as a White, working-class male. A researcher could
argue that I am unconsciously performing my gender, class, and race all the time. But if I say
that I am not, does that mean a researcher understands me better than I do?
Nope… I don’t buy it. !
But, as I’ve said before, Linguistic Anthropologists are people too. They tend to research
the ideologies of people and institutions because, as we’ve seen, they find these ideologies
problematic (in one way or another) and want to critique them. For example, the authors we’ve
read criticize what they interpret as: the ‘covert’ racism of misused Spanish, the stereotypes
underlying accents in Disney movies, the capitalist underpinnings of university composition
classes, or the unfair and untrue portrayal of Native Americans as ‘cold’ or ‘lacking language’.
We might note that these things are rather ‘easy’ to criticize because they are all
perpetrated by people and institutions that are traditionally ‘okay’ for anthropologists to dislike –
who could generally be described as well-educated, powerful, influential, affluent, un-
stigmatized, Western, English-speaking, White males. (People like me, except with money and
influence!) This group of people have basically ‘run the show’ in the US and Europe for quite
some time, often by exploiting, undermining, or just ignoring the needs of minorities.
I say that anthropologists ‘dislike’ this group because they (anthropologists) are typically
studying people who have wound up on more unpleasant sides of historical power dynamics.
These are people who have been colonized, discriminated against, marginalized, disenfranchised,
exploited, exoticized, or objectified – usually by well educated, powerful, influential, affluent,
un-stigmatized, Western, English-speaking, White males.
In short, anthropologists study and tend to support the dignity and rights of
minorities,1 and thus often wind up criticizing the behaviors and ideologies of well educated,
powerful, influential, affluent, un-stigmatized, Western, English-speaking, White males. In
many cases, anthropologists kind of wanted to do this, anyway!
However, this begs the question: What happens when Anthropologists study minorities
whose ideologies start to appear colonial, discriminatory, marginalizing, disenfranchising,
exploitative, exoticizing, or objectifying? Can they still make the same criticisms? Let’s look at
Kroskrity…
1 …although it’s important to note that this word (minority) is continuously changing meanings with the
demographics and economics of our society!
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