Adam Harr

Indonesia

I consider anthropology to be the comprehensive study of human realities - those aspects of the world, from global currencies to global warming, that are contingent on people's interactions and beliefs. Within this necessarily fragmented field of inquiry, my general interest is in the relationship between human realities and human languages. How does language in all its analyzed forms - phonemes, grammatical categories, metaphors, speech acts, contextual frames, sociolinguistic stereotypes, etc. - come to feel so real? And how do these forms of language shape the realities we live?

I am currently (2006) doing dissertation research in central Flores with speakers of the Lio language, investigating how Lio sociocosmic categories are reflected in and realized through ritually regimented verbal performances. I am finding it to be very difficult and very rewarding work.