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Teaching and Research in Native Americans Ethnology

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The EREA (Enseignement et recherche en ethnologie amérindienne – Teaching and Research in Native Americans Ethnology) was founded in 1977 as a unit associated with the EHESS (l’École des hautes études en sciences sociales – School for Advanced Studies in the Social Sciences). In 1986 it became an internal unit of the CNRS. The team joined the LESC as the EREA Centre in 2006. Since it was founded, the centre has been bringing together researchers, research professors (members and associates), postdoctoral students and PhD students.

Its area of research extends from Lowland South America (particularly the Amazon) to the Andes and Mesoamerica; it associates the fields of ethnology, ethnolinguistics, linguistic anthropology, ethnohistory, political anthropology, religious anthropology, visual anthropology, archaeology, history and geography.

Its research concerns some thirty populations or ethnic groups, developing comparative and theoretical approaches to diverse themes. Those currently being studied include:

  • agency and human/non-human relationships
  • conceptions of temporality and regimes of historicity and social memory
  • local knowledge and patrimonialisation issues
  • the status of images and objects; representations of the individual
  • space, power centres, territorial restructuring
  • the production of politics, movements based on native claims and identity claims; inter-ethnic relations
  • the reconstitutions of the religious
  • the dynamics of rituals
  • theoretical approaches to the facts of kinship
  • the syntax, semantics and pragmatics of American Indian languages
  • the construction of, and changes in, the field of American studies.

On the basis of solid field studies, members of the EREA centre strive to make a contribution to knowledge of these societies, while getting involved in local communities and institutions (publications, teaching, knowledge restitution, etc.).

The EREA organises three regular seminars: “Americanist Anthropology” at the Institute of the Americas, “Agency” at the EHESS and “Latin America through and for images” at the Musée du quai Branly.
Lecturers and researchers at the EREA Centre contribute to training and to framing research at several universities in France (Paris West, Paris Descartes, Lyon 2, Poitiers, EHESS, INALCO, École du Louvre) and abroad (ULB, Museo Nacional, Federal University of Rio de Janeiro, Federal University of Santa Catarina, University of São Paulo, University of San Marcos, Pontifical Catholic University of Peru, University of Buenos Aires, Rafael Landívar University, Guatemala). Since it was founded, the EREA has also been very active within the Society of Americanists.

The EREA Centre has an international network of associate researchers, and regularly accommodates international colleagues and PhD students.
The EREA Centre works in partnership with international programs (ANR, GDRI, PICS, ECOS) and is involved in organising numerous national and international conferences.

Mis à jour le 17 September 2014