The Annual Meeting focuses on the theme of circulation:
In 2010, the AAA will conduct the 109th Annual Meeting in New Orleans, where the river meets the sea. New Orleans channels flows into the heart of a continent, and out across oceans, around the globe. The boundary between river and sea, between water and earth, is shifting and unclear. The circulation of people and other living organisms, of material things, and of ideas in such zones of passage constitutes some of the central social and physical processes of concern to all kinds of anthropologists, historically and in the present.
New Orleans has inspired the theme of the 2010 AAA Annual Meeting: "Circulation." This theme is meant to encourage us to think about what happens when movement is the organizing trope of our questions, methodologies, analyses and accounts. We can think in terms of circulation across time as well as space, through different organizing principles, and in a variety of shapes and forms.
The idea of circulation invites us to consider what triggers, facilitates, constrains, disrupts or stops flows; what is at stake in these processes, and for whom; and what their consequences might be for humans and for the environment. It opens up questions about what exactly circulates: signs, objects or bodies. Do different things circulate in different ways? Do they change or remain constant? What new phenomena, arrangements and inequalities does circulation produce? How are resources and ways of understanding them identified, made sense of, produced and distributed in the process? How and why do rates and types of circulation vary across time and space? What crystallizes and what continues to flow and reshape?
"Circulation" also invites us to think across boundaries, whether those are boundaries organizing phenomena we seek to describe and explain, boundaries within and across disciplines, or boundaries among anthropologists or other social groups. It asks us to turn our attention to zones of encounter, conjunctions and liminal passages. It also requires us to ask whether "circulation" is a helpful trope for the production of anthropological knowledge. What light does it shed on the (increasingly widely circulating) concept of "culture"—arguably the central organizing construct of anthropology—and on anthropology itself?
We are interested in bringing together papers reflecting the perspectives of all subfields and forms of anthropological practice, or across them, investigating this theme with data, method and theory oriented to all temporal and spatial horizons.
Interested individuals should consult the Annual Meeting site for additional information. Submissions are due by 5pm EST on 1 April 2010.
Note that, as I understand things, the Association for Political and Legal Anthropology (APLA) sponsors panels and mentoring workshops at the Annual Meeting.