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.


Tuesday, October 19, 2010

CFP: Call for Poachers

The Multispecies Salon

Michel de Certeau speaks of “reading as poaching” in The Practice of Everyday Life. This assertion is part of de Certeau’s larger argumentthat consumption is not a passive act, determined by systems of production. He suggests that reading is a foundational mode of modern consumption, and therefore, of everyday life. In contrast to the “private hunting reserves” cultivated by elite literati, who alone claim rights to inscribe meanings to texts or landscapes, reading as poaching allows one to “convert the text through reading and to ‘run it’ the way one runs traffic lights” (1984: 171-176).

“What does it mean to poach another person’s paper, especially an unpublished one?” ask members of the Matsutake Worlds Research Group. The English word “poach” is related to the French word pocher, to push or poke with a finger or pointed instrument, to pierce. “Poaching is a way of pushing or poking pieces of ones research towards that of another,” suggests the Group, “something of an offering; not an encroachment but a gift.”

We hereby announce an open CFP (Call for Poachers) in association with the Multispecies Salon panel at the upcoming American Anthropological Association meetings (Saturday, November 20th, 1:45 p.m.-5:30 p.m., New Orleans Sheraton, Grand Ballroom A, 5th Floor). Seventeen papers are available for poaching—all orbiting around the emergence of multispecies ethnography, a novel interdisciplinary mode of inquiry.

“Multispecies ethnography asks cultural anthropologists to reengage with biological anthropology,” write event organizers Eben Kirksey and Stefan Helmreich. The papers under discussion explore human entanglements with animals, plants, fungi, and microbes.

Rather than passively listen to conventionally scripted conference presentations, we invite audience members to push or poke the papers on the table, to run them, like traffic lights. We invite the audience to offer up examples from their own research, to “poach” papers like pears, using red wine and honey to intensify and transform the flavor of the fruit.

Become a poacher at The Multispecies Salon.

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. Münster (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.