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AAA is pleased to announce the recipient of the 2016 Anthropology in Media Award is Mark Schuller. Since receiving his PhD in 2007, Schuller has become one of the most productive and dedicated scholars on the contemporary anthropological scene.
Schuller’s book, Killing with Kindness, is a study of how the conditions under which international aid is distributed to local NGOs in Haiti render that aid significantly less effective than it otherwise might be. Schuller demonstrates that such failures are not due to the presumed profligacy of local populations but, rather, that it is the political structures within which the world of international aid functions that produce such negative outcomes. This book is written in an accessible style; it is being widely read and debated by policy makers, aid personnel and NGO employees. Schuller continues to be involved with post-earthquake reconstruction in Haiti and to advocate for Haitian interests within the context of international aid and relief communities.
Schuller also co-producer/co-director of the film, Poto Mitan: Haitian Women, Pillars of the Global Economy, in which five Haitian women tell their own stories and offer their own analyses of the ways in which globalization has served to worsen living conditions for the majority of the population. Schuller has toured widely with this film, showing it in academic and non-academic settings. The accompanying website includes links to further resources and information: http://www.potomitan.net.
Along with the publication of scholarly articles, Schuller also maintains a blog about Haiti on the Huffington Post, which attracts a broad readership. Through the blog Schuller uses scholarship to shape the public’s understanding of contemporary issues of concern and critical significance.
Schuller embodies the best attributes of the contemporary engaged and activist anthropologist. Last year, he was the recipient of the Margaret Mead Award, presented by the AAA and SfAA. The Anthropology in Media Award similarly honors a scholar who effectively communicates anthropological ideas and research to broad audiences beyond the academy.
Schuller will be honored at an awards ceremony on November 16, 2016 at the 115th Annual Meeting of the American Anthropological Association.