In 2016, the Association began hosting several public programs to support our new public education project, World on the Move: 100,000 Years of Human Migration®. Following in the footsteps of our successful RACE project which explains differences among people and reveals the reality – and unreality – of race, World on the Move is tackling the topic of migration. In June, the project invited anthropologist with recent publications on migration to book reading events in the Washington, DC area.
World on the Move was also prominently featured at the Smithsonian Folklife Festival over the summer. Association staff and anthropology students facilitated interactive workshops for the Festival’s “On the Move” program, inviting visitors to consider how immigration and migration both challenges and energizes culture. Facilitators asked visitors about what objects they would take with them if they suddenly had to move and how they would cope if they found themselves in new surroundings. These exercises put participants in the position to reflect upon and even embody the experiences of migrants.
In November at the AAA Annual Meeting, World on the Move held special lightning talk presentations. These lightning talks were an opportunity for presenters to highlight several case studies in brief and engaging audiovisual presentations, aiming to prompt a broader discussion about the range and complexities of migration histories and the changes they bring about. As World on the Move continues to develop, the Association will host additional programming on the topic of migration including book readings, film screenings, public meetings, and research symposia.