Saturday, January 22, 2011

A New Web Site on Central Asian Affairs

I am not alone, I think, in feeling overwhelmed at the flood of information on the web. At the same time I feel a need to track what is going on in the world.
How does anyone keep up to date who espouses the notion that modern anthropology should address real issues in our own time?
It seems fair to accept the notion -- formulated by cultural evolutionists like Leslie White a long time ago -- that the world is changing at an ever rising rate: Every new invention provides a basis for other inventions, sometimes a plethora of new ones, some of them inducing new social relations and new possibilities for imagination and creativity. So the pace of change may be geometric.
Whatever the principle, the reality seems to be demonstrating it: The pace of change is outstripping my own ability even to pretend knowledge of what is going on. As I tell my students, whenever I finally think I understand what is going on in the world I'm out of date.
So the problem is acute, keeping aware of what is going on.
Recently I have teamed up with Jaleh Fazelian of the Washington Univerity library to set up web sites to back up my courses. For the Central Asia course she has provided a kind of "home" site for many ways to track developments in Central Asia. There is so much there -- links to recent articles, blogs, basice sources -- that it is at least one place to start in trying to follow affairs as they develop in Central Asia, one of those places whose importance to the world generally is rising [again, I think, geometrically].
Click on the title above to see her site. []

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