Chains of Difference

Chains of Difference: A Community Clinical Anthropology Project is an effort to use anthropology to bridge our differences. Two of its key efforts are combining education and anthropology to help us deal better with the problems that can arise from our very diversity, and the idea that amateur anthropology – learning about and practicing anthropology outside formal settings – can be crucial to this process of negotiating our differences.

Here are three aims from their Welcome post:

-The discussion of contemporary dilemmas that stop us from learning more about each other across difference (religious, class difference, cultural, generational, etc): what can we actually ask each other about diversity and how to do it?

-The ideia that making anthropology a practise accessible to all can enhance inter-cultural relations and promote cooperation across difference

-The aim of passing direct knowledge of the practise of amateur anthropology across generations rather than relying on indirect educational means (e.g. internet). Adults trained in amateur anthropology can ideally pass the knowledge onto children and encourage them to pursue knowledge on questions of difference across diversity from a very early stage.

Chains of Differences is a project initiated by Pedro Oliveira, a Portuguese clinical psychologist
with a PhD in social anthropology recently completed at Brunel University.

Alongside Chains of Difference, Oliveira is starting a post-doctoral project focused on bring together clinical psychology and anthropology through “running multi-family groups and researching them simultaneously through an action-research ethnographic methodology.” He would love to get feedback on this project, so you can find the complete description of his proposed work here.

Link to Chains of Difference Facebook Group.

Link to Chains of Difference blog.

6 thoughts on “Chains of Difference

  1. Neuroanthropology’s excellent roving eye has caught another important development in action anthropology with this post on Chains of Difference. Exciting and important! Thanks.

  2. Dear Daniel and Barbara,

    Thank you so much! I must say I do have a dream of bringing some neuropsychology and neuroanthropology to this project, at some point. For the time being I am just working hard to get the (already various) disciplines involved making some sense, from the onset. It would be great to have feedback and input of people thinking neuroanthropology. I appreciate all the help that I can get to have the ‘amateur anthropology’ part of the project moving side to side with my PhD. Anyone who would like to get involved, please get in touch:

    Regards, Pedro

  3. Hola

    Gracias. I appreciate the invitation and look foward to learn more about neuroanthropology.


  4. This looks like a fascinating project. I am willing to help. I’m finishing a PhD degree in Biological and Cultural Anthropology with an emphasis on specific aspects of social medicine. I particularly like the idea of utilizing anthropology as an applicable source of low cost, non-invasive, and easily implemented strategies. Is diversity your main focus or do you want to expand this to many aspects later?

    Let me know if you have specific questions, tasks, etc.


  5. Thank you everyone for support notes and C.S, I just sent you a detailed reply. It will be great to have you on board. If more anthropologists open adjacent Chain-blogs, as I explain in the project, we will keep encouraging non-anthros to open Chain-Blogs on narratives of difference build through the ideas and methods of our discipline. I think it can be a path to a greater interchange between our community and a wider audience. Not to mention, of course, the important ‘writing activism’ facet of it which I truly believe can work as a form of community clinical anthropology. I look forward to working with you, CS. Regards, Pedro

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