Former Committee on Minority Issues in Anthropology - Participate & Advocate
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Former Committee on Minority Issues in Anthropology

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In 1992 a Planning Group for a AAA Commission on Minority Issues recommended the creation of a Commission on Minority Issues, which was tasked with creating the organization and objectives of a standing Committee on Minority Issues in Anthropology.In 1993 that Commission determined three focal areas of concern for the new standing Committee: attracting minorities to the discipline and the Association; overcoming the alienation of Native Americans to the discipline, and defining anthropology's roles in public discourses about cultural diversity.In 2007 the AAA Executive Board established the Commission on Race and Racism in Anthropology (CRRA) to review and make recommendations regarding the organization and responsibilities of the CMIA.Based on the CRRA recommendations, the charge and structure of the CMIA were modified in 2013.

Committee Charge


Foster professional advancement of U.S. racialized minorities in anthropology. Attract such minorities to and retain them in the discipline and the Association. Promote intellectual awareness within the discipline and Association of issues that face such minority anthropologists. Help define anthropology's role in U.S. discourses on racism.

Duration of Committee

Combined with other AAA programmatic committees to form the Members’ Programmatic, Advisory and Advocacy Committee (MPAAC) following the 2017 AAA Annual Meeting. 

Committee Reports to

The Executive Board


Membership and Appointment

Term of Office

3-year terms


Seeking funding for supporting minority scholarship in anthropology at all levels, developing linkages with minority anthropologists, and assisting in defining anthropology's role in the discourse on cultural diversity. An ongoing activity is the development of a comprehensive database of minority anthropologists, including information on members' expertise on file, which can be made available to departments recruiting faculty or to funding agencies seeking reviewers.

AAA seeks racial/ethnic demographic information about anthropology students, faculty and practitioners. This information is gathered through surveys of academic departments and information solicited from AAA members.

Committee Links


Listserv for Minority Anthropologists
In 2007 we (CMIA) created a listserv directed at minority students. The listserv is meant to be used as a networking tool to aid minority anthropologists in sharing opportunities and news that might include job postings, research or funding possibilities, discussion of relevant topics, mentoring of students and junior faculty, etc. The list is open to all interested parties."

We hope this list will be a useful tool for networking and building professional relationships. We envision the list will be used to share funding and research opportunities; for mentoring undergraduate and graduate students as well as junior faculty; sharing publishing opportunities; posting upcoming conferences and calls for papers; as a discussion place for a range of issues and topics of interest to minority anthropologists; and as a way to help us all 'lift as we climb'.

For more information and if you would like your e-mail address to be added to the list, please contact Sonya Atalay (

Annual Reports

Committee Description and Institutional Memory

AAA Minority Dissertation Fellowship Program

Fellowship Recipients

Fellowship Application

Race, Gender, and Mentoring in Anthropology Departments (July 2004)

AAA Statement on "Race" (May 1998)

AAA Commission on Minority Issues in Anthropology Report (February 1996)

The Minority Experience in Anthropology: Report of the Committee on Minorities and Anthropology (August 1973)

Statement on "Race" and Intelligence (PDF)

AAA Response to OMB Directive 15: Race and Ethnic Standards for Federal Statistics and Administrative Reporting (PDF)

Additional Information And Resources

AAA Establishes Working Group to Monitor Racialized Police Brutality/Extrajudicial Violence
To help reduce police-related violence by applying anthropological knowledge and expertise, the American Anthropological Association (AAA) has established a Working Group on Racialized Police Brutality and Extrajudicial Violence. The working group, which falls under the aegis of the Association’s Committee on Minority Issues in Anthropology, will track the historical and contemporary trajectory of racialized police brutality and extrajudicial violence in the United States, and develop resources to help mitigate its impact.

The working group will establish databases of AAA members with relevant expertise, resources for funding basic research and engagement activities, bibliographic resources and publication sites, and groups documenting incidents of racialized police brutality and extrajudicial violence. The group will also work to place AAA subject-matter experts in important public conversations on the subject of racialized police brutality.

Co-chaired by David Simmons (University of South Carolina) and Marla Frederick (Harvard University), the working group also includes Shalini Shankar (Northwestern University), Dana-Ain Davis (CUNY, Queens College), Bianca Williams (University of Colorado, Boulder), Ruth Gomberg-Munoz (Loyola University), Maurice Magana (UCLA), and Lynn Bolles (University of Maryland).

To view the Working Group charge, go here.

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