International research collaboration is increasingly popular, providing many scholarly and practical benefits. These collaborative endeavors also encounter obstacles and costs, including ones involving issues of power and professional ethics. My study seeks to widen our understanding of international collaborative social science research by examining the complex origins, diverse activities, and clouded legacy of the Smithsonian Institution’s Institute of Social Anthropology (ISA). The ISA was an innovative collaborative teaching and research program founded by Julian Steward during World War II to meet many goals, including increasing social science capacity in Latin America, expanding knowledge about contemporary cultural change, strengthening area expertise among U.S. scholars, and promoting closer relations among the peoples of the Americas. The ISA provided career-enhancing opportunities for U.S. and Latin American scholars, while helping to pioneer applied medical anthropology. I take issue with recent analysts who portray the ISA as promoting, including through covert research, U.S. hegemonic interests seeking to control rural Latin America.
Castro, A. Peter
"Collaborative Researchers or Cold Warriors? The Origins, Activities, and Legacy of the Smithsonian’s Institute of Social Anthropology,"
Journal of International and Global Studies: Vol. 2:
1, Article 4.
Available at: https://digitalcommons.lindenwood.edu/jigs/vol2/iss1/4
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