Submission Guidelines

Editors: Yarimar Bonilla and Adia Benton

The Public Anthropologies Section of American Anthropologist provides a forum for anthropological scholarship of interest to a broad audience. We seek perspectives that explicitly engage with public debates taking place around the world, this includes issues related to international relations, public policy, social movements and political participation, structural racism, systemic inequality, and other relevant themes. Most of the content for the section will be featured on the AA website exclusively; thus, we encourage the use of accessible and inviting prose that incorporates multimedia resources and employs a creative use of digital formats.

We particularly welcome submissions of the following types:

  • Digital conversations, which focus on a particular theme or topic of public interest and involve two or more anthropologists in conversation. The format for these conversations can be based on an email exchange, an online “chat,” or the transcript of a phone or skype conversation. The goal is to not simply publish a series of individual reflections but to actually stage an exchange of ideas.
  • Digital supplements to articles appearing in the journal—these can include multimedia resources, links to further material, or a shorter discussion of a published piece aimed at a broader public.
  • Interviews with authors of recent books of public interest. Format is open, and can include video and audio files (accompanied by transcription) and email conversations.
  • Curated lists such as #syllabi, YouTube playlists, storified tweets, digital “mixtapes,” or other collections of multimedia materials on a topic related to contemporary debates.
  • Short commentaries (800-1,000 words) on topics circulating in the news—or, conversely, highlighting global topics on which mainstream media is silent. Ideally, these pieces would model the ways in which a publicly oriented anthropology can be relevant to issues of broad societal concern.  

Proposals should be submitted to the editorial team via The section editors will read, edit, and collaborate with the author(s) as necessary before submitting materials to the AA managing editor.

Image: Wikimedia Commons