Category Archives: Links

Our Circulatory System (or Folklore Studies Publishing in the Era of Open Access, Corporate Enclosure and the Transformation of Scholarly Societies)

Just a note to note that I have made public an essay titled “Our Circulatory System (or Folklore Studies Publishing in the Era of Open Access, Corporate Enclosure and the Transformation of Scholarly Societies).” The piece began with a series of posts published on this site in 2008 and was a talk given at the symposium “The Form of Value in Globalized Traditions” organized by the Center for Folklore Studies at the Ohio State University in 2009. It is long (about 5000 words) and can be found on my website here:

The Impact of the Web 2.0 World on Scholarly Societies

A friend who is very involved in the leadership of the American Folklore Society  just shared with me a link to James Lappin’s very effective blog post “The Impact of the Web 2.0 World on the Records Management Society.”  While presented as a case study of information science/archives organizations in the UK, its arguments generalize amazingly well and provide valuable food for thought for all scholarly disciplines and societies–including those that the readers of this weblog care (or have given up caring) about.

Vis-a-vis the American Anthropological Association, the post provides a compliment to the arguments presented in a less immediately accessible way in “Anthropology of/in Circulation: The Future of Open Access and Scholarly Societies.”  (As a contributor to it) I am very proud of the later paper, but it represents a dialogue on a range of issues and features a diversity of voices with several overlapping sets of interests. Mr. Lappin’s essay is a single scholar’s view on the ways that scholarly societies should be confronting the challenges and opportunities of a world in which most of their members will have access to web 2.0 tools. His discussions of the growing irrelevance of scholarly societies in the 20th century mode and his case for a new mission for the scholarly society (amplifying member’s voices in public rather than as a provider of members-only benefits of decreasing value) connects especially well with the case that Chris Kelty was making in “Anthropology of/in Circulation.” He also provides and operationalizes a number of do-able  steps of a clear cut sort–a kind of emulate-able game plan that a society leadership would be foolish not to at least give thought to.

10 Publishers Moving in the Right Direction

There is way more relevant news from the world of scholarly communications than any of us can keep up with.  Thankfully Open Access News does an amazing job of flagging tons of important items for our consideration. A recent bit of news that I was especially glad to see was the pro-OA statement offered by the directors of ten North American university presses.  These presses affirmed a collaborative, not-for-profit, public-interest position that contrasts strongly with that of the AAP and the AAUP.

I do not know all of these presses equally well, but I would note that the University Press of Florida and the University of Michigan Press have important histories in anthropology monograph publishing and that Wayne State University Press is crucial to folklore studies. The University Press of New England (via Wesleyan University Press) is central in ethnomusicology. This statement is one more reason for scholars to think favorably about these presses when looking for publishing partners.

Thank you University Press of Florida, University of Akron Press, University Press of New England, Athabasca University Press, Wayne State University Press, University of Calgary Press, The University of Michigan Press, The Rockefeller University Press, Penn State University, and University of Massachusetts Press.

PS: Where does your University Press stand?

UPDATE:  See the Inside Higher Education story here.

Some Open and Some Not So Open Links

Recently John Holbo at Crooked Timber posted a thought piece about how nice it would be to have “JSTOR for books.” Of course, we here at OAA would like everything to be fully Open Access, unlike the JSTOR model adopted for most of the AAA publications. But the reason I mention Holbo’s post is that it provoked some interesting comments, full of links worth mentioning. They range from commercial subscription sites, like Safari Books Online, which is what provoked the discussion in the first place, to the radical fringes of the Open Access movement – Guerilla Open Access. Here are some of the links, please feel free to suggest others:

UPDATE: Google just announced that it will be offering libraries subscription access to out-of-print (but still under copyright) books which it has scanned.

OA Textbook for Archaeological Stratigraphy

Last May a correspondent who was understandably frustrated by the lack of a clear submissions path for this blog wrote this comment to the post titled “Kim Christen on Author Agreements and Nuanced Open Access.”

This is NOT a comment on this post, but I can’t find any other way to contact the authors of this blog (you should sort that out…) I wanted to ask you to post this, which was sent around my department of archaeology internally:

At his revised website _www.harrismatrix.com_ Dr. Ed Harris has arranged for the free downloading of his textbook Principles of Archaeological Stratigraphy. Long out of print and very expensive when it was, Harris was determined that the book should be widely available, especially to students, and therefore is giving it away for free. The site has been set up and is maintained by Dr. Wolfgang Neubauer and Klaus Loecker of the University of Vienna, to which Ed expresses his thanks for this service to archaeology.

Our apologies to Professor Meece for making the good-turn of calling this development to the field’s attention kind of a let down and a pain. Better late than never, I hope.

The book in question was originally published as: Edward C. Harris (1989) Principles of Archaeological Stratigraphy. Second Edition. New York: Academic Press. See its Open WorldCat entry here.

The author is to be commended for this effort. Free sure beats $79.50 and up for a used copy on Amazon. Perhaps the book can be added to Mana’o to insure availability in the years to come.

Museum Anthropology Review 2(1) Just Published

Its a small matter in a sea of broader OAA news, but I am pleased to note (as the journal’s editor) that the spring 2008 issue of Museum Anthropology Review is now available. It can be found online at

Supporters of OA publishing can help the cause by “registering” with the journal.  This is free and easy and provides the option of getting Tables of Contents sent via email when new issues are published. Registering also helps us demonstrate to funders and other potential stakeholders that the journal has scholarly and public support. To do this, one can click the “For Readers” found under the Heading “Information”. Thanks to everyone who has supported this new effort.

Cultural Analysis (the journal)

For those who have not encountered it yet, I wanted to call attention to the open access journal Cultural Analysis. As its editors describe it, Cultural Analysis is an interdisciplinary, peer-reviewed journal dedicated to investigating expressive and everyday culture. The journal features analytical research articles, but also includes notes, reviews, and responses.” In its 6th volume, the journal features smart articles followed by responses authored by leading scholars in anthropology, folklore and cultural studies. A new issue has just appeared online and can be found here. Begun by students in the folklore program at UC-Berkeley, the journal’s editorial collective is increasingly distributed around the world but the journal continues to receive support from the Berkeley campus. If you are browsing the journal’s back issues, do not miss my friend Dorothy Noyes’ wonderful paper “The Judgment of Solomon: Global Protections for Tradition and the Problem of Community Ownership”, which appeared in volume 5.)