So this was going to be a forum, but I have decided a blog is better as I hope for it to act in part as a diary of events.
I study Social Anthropology and have decided that I would like to do some fieldwork for my dissertation next academic year.
I am also very interested in the Commons and am gradually using it as a lens to see a lot very differently. It starts off as seeming such a basic common sense, but as time has passed it has grown within me and gained a lot more depth, but depth of an uncomplex kind that is accessible. Especially the the idea, act and perspective of Commoning.
I think a very simple definition of Anthropology and the Commons are deserved here for those not familiar with one or the other:
the Commons: It embraces all the creations of nature and society that we inherit jointly and freely, and hold in trust for future generations. http://www.commonslearningalliance.org/content/understanding-commons#what_commons
Social Anthropology: http://www.kent.ac.uk/sac/socanth/index.html AND the last sentence here: http://www.socialsciences.manchester.ac.uk/disciplines/socialanthropology/undergraduate/whatis/
So, I did some thinking with my friends and we have being working on the concept that we wish to be Direct Action Anthropolgists if you will and that perhaps the Commons can play a part in this. Perhaps a better way to put this would be to say that they act as an illuminatory framework, just as they do for resources and such like. Because the Commons isnt just the "stuff" but this way of looking at things - an attitude almost.
I sketched this diagram to explain what I am thinking as it is not quite obvious without all the facts and a model can usually help:
So the red parts are essentially the link we wish to make and test their validity.
If I have not made this clear, I would ask the reader to please help me do so.
What this diagram is trying to display is that perhaps Anthropology in one of its fundamental aspects is an effort at seeing Culture as an everchanging Commons - Anthropology is the commoning of cultures?
Consequently to this we are trying to see what is the best way to make use of a fieldtrip in this context.
Because there is ample space to explore thsi topic as an essay, through academic and such other knwoledge resources without using personal experiential fieldwork.
So far we are working on the idea of spending some time with a community/culture where common resources are not seen as personal possessions and unedrstanding how one might go about this and perhaps getting a feel for seeing the world through a less possessive lens.
I woudl very much welcome suggestions for fieldwork, or communities or people or places to visit (we have a few in mind) and perhaps using some collective intelligence to delve into this topic!