About Me

Eben Kirksey is an American anthropologist who specializes on science and justice. Princeton’s Institute for Advanced Study is hosting Kirksey in the 2019-2020 academic year, where he is conducting research on gene editing, the innovation economy, and social inequality.

Ph.D. 2008 UC Santa Cruz
M.Phil. 2003 University of Oxford
B.A. 2000 New College of Florida

Currently he is Associate Professor of Anthropology at Deakin University in Melbourne, Australia. Princeton University hosted Dr. Kirksey as the 2015-2016 Currie C. and Thomas A. Barron Visiting Professor and he previously served as Program Head (Convener) of Environmental Humanities at UNSW Sydney.


Wednesday, July 15, 2009

Indonesia's Military Investigates Itself--Again

Today George Aditjondro, an Indonesian sociologist and public intellectual, suggested that the Indonesian military staged a series of ambush murders last weekend at the Freeport McMoRan gold and copper mine. Aditjondro told the Associated Press: "Whenever they (security forces) feel they do not receive enough 'protection fee' then they orchestrate an attack to show Freeport how vulnerable they are and increase protection fees."

Indonesian officials today announced that the Indonesian military would join the police in investigating the killings of last weekend.

If recent history can serve as any guide, the Indonesian military will not be able to pull off a credible investigation. In December 2002, when the police fingered military shooters in a similar attack, General Endriartono Sutarto, then the head of Indonesia's Armed Forces, dispatched a fact finding team to the crime scene. This team, led by Brigadier General Hendarji, conducted what they called a "reconstruction."

The purported aim of this reconstruction was to assess the accuracy of eyewitnesses testimony placing Indonesian soldiers with the Kopassus Special Forces at the crime scene. In short, the reconstruction conducted on 28 December, 2002, in Timika was a sham. Crime scene eye witnesses and human rights observers reported that they were intimidated during the exercise. The military publicly exonerated themselves after this reconstruction, saying that the eyewitnesses had "lied."

If Indonesian military personnel are among the likely suspects in the latest round of murders, then they should not participate in the investigation.

To read the interview with George Aditjondro see: Anthony Deutch, "Security Suspected in Indonesia Gold Mine Killings," The Associated Press, 15 July 2009.

To learn more about the December 2002 "reconstruction" by the Indonesian military see pages 188-189 of: KIRKSEY, S. E. & A. HARSONO. 2008. "Criminal Collaborations: Antonius Wamang and the Indonesian Military in Timika", South East Asia Research, 16 (2): 165-197.

Select Publications

Select Publications

SHAPIRO, N & E. Kirksey (2017) "Chemo-ethnography: An Introduction" Cultural Anthropology 32(4): 481-493.

KIRKSEY, S. E. (2017) "Lively Multispecies Communities, Deadly Racial Assemblages, and the Promise of Justice" South Atlantic Quarterly 116(1): 195-206.

KIRKSEY, S. E. (2015) "Species: A Praxiographic Study" Journal of the Royal Anthropological Institute, 21, 758-780.

KIRKSEY, S. E. (2014) The Multispecies Salon, Duke University Press: Durham.

KIRKSEY, S. E. (2013) “Interspecies Love” in Lanjouw and Corbey (eds) The Politics of Species (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press), pp. 164-77.

KIRKSEY, S. E., N. Shapiro, M. Brodine (2013) "Hope in Blasted Landscapes" Social Science Information, 52 (2): 228-256.

KIRKSEY, S. E. 2013 “A Messianic Multiple: West Papua, July 1998” in Bryan Turner (ed.) War and Peace: Essays on Religion and Violence (Anthem Press), pp. 37-59.

KIRKSEY, S. E. 2012 "Living with Parasites in Palo Verde National Park" Environmental Humanities, 1: 23-55.

KIRKSEY, S. E. 2012 "Thneeds Reseeds: Figures of Biocultural Hope in the Anthropocene" in G. Martin, D. Mincyte, and U. M√ľnster (eds.) Why Do We Value Diversity? Rachel Carson Perspectives vol 9: 89-94.

KIRKSEY, S. E. 2012 Freedom in Entangled Worlds, Duke University Press: Durham.

KIRKSEY, S. E. & S. HELMREICH. 2010 "The Emergence of Multispecies Ethnography", Cultural Anthropology, 25 (4): 545-576. Full Special Issue (48.8 MB)

In the News

In September 2010 Eben testified before the U.S. Congress about massacres in West Papua.

Testimony at Congressional hearing: Crimes Against Humanity from Eben Kirksey on Vimeo.

He joined Indonesian investigative reporter Andreas Harsono in 2008 to publish "Criminal Collaborations", a peer-reviewed article about Indonesian military involvement in the murder of two Americans. This research started a lively discussion in the Indonesian media and sparked a series of media articles in publications such as The Washington Post, The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, and the International Herald Tribune. Amy Goodman of Democracy Now! invited Eben to discuss this research on her news show.