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Backchannels

Linguists first used the term backchannel to refer to the spontaneous responses and signals that provide interactivity to what is only apparently a one-way communication. Social media users have adopted the term to refer to the unofficial, multi-directional online conversation that parallels formal academic exchange at a lecture or conference. The Backchannels blog is intended to have a similar relationship to scholarly discourse in STS. It provides an outlet for alternative-format scholarly communications, publishing shorter, timelier, media-rich communiques of interest to the global STS community. The editors welcome proposed contributions.

We Have Never Been Digital Anthropologists

Reflections / Rebekah Cupitt

title Rebekah Cupitt reflects on how the foundations of ethnography relate to the digital.

Innovación por fuera de la ley, Narcosubmarinos y los ESCT

Reflections / Javier Guerrero

title Narcosubmarinos, una mirada desde los ESCT

The Bow Valley and ‘People’ Without a History

Reflections / Tina Loo

title Multispecies ethnographies—of grizzlies in this case—through artistic visualizations let us question our actions in the world and the future we make.

Extractivism and States of Exception in mineralized territories

/ Gabriela Marroquín

title States of exceptions and anti-mining bodies as mechanisms to stabilized a mining territory

A Newbie’s Perspective on the 4S Annual Meeting

Reflections / Annemarie Hofer

title Annemarie Hofer shares her first experience at the 4S annual meeting.

Game playing and ‘ethics hype’

Reflections / Gabrielle Samuel

Gabrielle Samuel argues in this blog post that while ‘hype’ surrounding biomedical research has been abundantly discussed, ‘ethics hype’ has been much less talked about.

STS and environmental history live to see another day

Reflections / Joseph Satish V

title Environmental history is yet another important avenue for STS scholars to explore and work with – considering that forests, the environment and “nature” themselves are constructed socially, a theme so often explored in STS theory. This post shares why Joseph Satish feels this is so, based on his visit to the Anglade Institute of Natural History in Kodaikanal, south India.

Public Health in the Calais Refugee Camp: Environment, Health and Exclusion

Report-backs / Surindar Dhesi and Arshad Isakjee

title The ongoing emergency for refugees is having profound and hidden health consequences for thousands of displaced persons who live in informal ‘makeshift’ camps across Europe.

African cities in the changing global landscape

Reflections / Prince K. Guma

"Questions need to be posed as to how we ought to (dis)associate and (dis)connect from/with dominant and inextricable narratives, imaginaries and dichotomies if we must accurately subsume the African city within the increasingly precarious global present."

Building STS Programs: Notes From an Initial Meeting

Report-backs / Sam Weiss Evans

Sam Weiss Evans reports on conversations held at 4S Boston about the challenges and promises of building STS Programs

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Reflections

We Have Never Been Digital Anthropologists
Innovación por fuera de la ley, Narcosubmarinos y los ESCT
The Bow Valley and ‘People’ Without a History
A Newbie’s Perspective on the 4S Annual Meeting

Report-backs

Public Health in the Calais Refugee Camp: Environment, Health and Exclusion
Building STS Programs: Notes From an Initial Meeting
Segundo Coloquio colombiano en estudios sociales de la ciencia: hacer la paz en un mundo posverdad
Describing and intervening: Exploring the plurality of STS in India

Projects

The Third Year of #QueerSTS4S and Call for 2018 Organizers
Dis—ease with X and Y: Disclosing Digital Sociology
How migrant registration infrastructures co-produce citizens, institutions and territory
Developing New STS Minors: The Case of Cal Poly

Reviews

Book Review: Cotton and Race Across the Atlantic: Britain, Africa, and America, 1900-1920
Renewable energy for STS scholarship: the Handbook of Science and Technology Studies
Betwixt and Between Augmentation and Automation: Some Reflections after Watching “Sully”
‘Hard’ Surveillance and ‘Soft’ Surveillance: The Quantified Self at Work

Backchannels Editors

Steven Jackson, Chair, 4S Web Committee

Roopali Phadke, Conferences, journals, and events

Assistant Editors: Poonam Pandey, Yelena Gluzman

Gloria Baigorrotegui, Reviews, reblogs, and STS commentary from Asia, Africa & Latin America

Assistant Editors: Fredy Mora-Gámez, Prince Guma, Joseph Satish

Amanda Windle, Reviews, reblogs, and STS commentary from North America, Europe, and Australia

Assistant Editors: Leo Matteo Bachinger, Madeleine Pape, Yana Boeva

For contact information, see the Editorial Guidelines page.