Nicolas Langlitz: "Making Up for a Missed Encounter? Why Cultural Primatologists and Cultural Anthropologists Didn't get to Talk"

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Primate Conversations with Nicolas Langlitz - 23rd Feb 2021

Talk abstract: The ontological divide between nature and culture has informed the division of labor between natural and human sciences. Cultural primatology was one of several intellectual projects that has challenged the nature-culture divide since the 1980s. And yet no consilience between the knowledge cultures of cultural primatology and cultural anthropology ensued. Based on historical research and ethnographic work with cultural primatologists, the talk examines this missed encounter and wonders aloud what it would take to have that conversation today. At a time when cultural anthropologists conduct "multispecies ethnographies" of "nature-cultures," the ontological gap appears to have closed – but the epistemic gap between the two knowledge cultures might be wider than ever. The goal of the talk is not to provide a new conceptual framework to integrate cultural and evolutionary anthropology but to foster mutual understanding of how these fields have diverged and what interests they might have in common.

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