Department of Social Anthropology
Annual lecture

The Fredrik Barth Memorial Lecture 2021: Marianne Lien

The title of this year's lecture is "Beyond the Ethnographic Presence; Landscapes as relational archives".

Logo Fredrik Barth Memorial Lecture
The invited speaker for the Fredrik Barth Memorial Lecture 2021 is Professor Marianne Lien at the University of Oslo.
/Illustration: Nina B. Dahl

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We are happy to announce that Professor Marianne Lien, University of Oslo, will give the Fredrik Barth Memorial Lecture 2021.

Beyond the Ethnographic Presence; Landscapes as relational archives

Among the cherished legacies of Fredrik Barth is his emphasis on ethnographic fieldwork and on the ethnographic presence as a superb empirical entry point for understanding asymmetrical relations, ethnicity and social change. His approach shaped generations of scholars, as well as the anthropological understanding of ethnic identities in Norway, including in Finnmark.

In this lecture, I draw the attention to sites in Finnmark where traces of colonization and atrocities can still be noticed in the landscape, and where ethnic identity, for some, is still a ‘social stigma’.  Mobilising material, archival, human and botanical remains, I ask what such artefacts can tell us about the making and un-making of subjectivites and ethnic identities, both past and present. Tracing the landscape as a relational archive, and the archive as a material site where relations are ordered and negotiated, I explore shifting conditions of possibility and hope in a landscape that holds the legacies of multiple life-forms and multiple losses.

Mindful of how silence is often the companion of shame, I search for ways to articulate the aftermath of colonizing policies. Towards this aim, I propose a multi-temporal ethnography that seeks not only to elicit the past as historical background, but to grasp material traces for what they reveal gaps and absences in the present.

About the lecturer

Marianne Lien is a Professor at the Department of Social Anthropology at the University of Oslo. She has focused her work on questions regarding consumption, production and marketing for a number of years with a special focus on food and nutrition. In recent years she has also published in the fields of economic anthropology, globalization, nature,  domestication and aquaculture. She is currently director of the research project Newcomers to the farm; Atlantic salmon between the wild and the Industrial.

In Norway she has conducted fieldwork in Finnmark, Oslo, Hardanger, as well as Tasmania, Australia. Lien was head of the research program ”Transnational Flows of Concepts and Substances”. English book publications include Marketing and Modernity, The Politics of Food and Holding Worlds Together – Ethnographies of knowing and belonging.

All interested are welcome!