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The School for Advanced Research is one of North America’s preeminent independent institutes for the study of anthropology, related social sciences, and humanities. SAR is home to the Indian Arts Research Center, one of the nation’s most important Southwest Native American art research collections. Through scholar residencies, artist fellowships, SAR Press, and public programs, SAR advances our understanding of humankind in an increasingly interconnected world.

Staying Connected

In addition to canceling, postponing, or livestreaming our in-person public programs until April 30, we have reluctantly decided to close the SAR campus to the public until further notice.
We understand that your mailboxes are flooded with messages about responses to Covid-19 and it can seem overwhelming. But now is a good time to reflect and find new ways to engage with one another. So we can’t engage in-person? Let’s connect from home. Here are several ways you can continue to be part of the SAR community from afar.

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2020 J.I. Staley Prize Awarded to a Powerful Examination of Life, Death, and Care, among Inuit Communities.

Lisa Stevenson’s Life Beside Itself examines two historical moments among the Inuit of northern Canada: a tuberculosis epidemic in the mid-twentieth century and an epidemic of suicides among Inuit youth today.  Through richly textured analysis, Stevenson shows how suicide prevention programs disregard what makes life worthwhile to Inuit people. Life Beside Itself deftly weaves together ethnography, archival voice recordings, and images to raise new questions about life, death, and care.

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IARC Speaker Series Explores Indigenous-Based Cultural Preservation

SAR is proud to present a series of conversation-style presentations exploring today’s world of cultural preservation. This year’s IARC speaker series takes us on a journey beyond the Pueblo communities within which we are situated, to shed light on the many remarkable ways indigenous-based cultural preservation is happening nationally.

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Chaco Landscapes: Sensory and Political Engagements with Place

The School for Advanced Research (SAR) is pleased to announce the next event in our third annual Creative Thought Forum Series. Archaeologist Ruth Van Dyke presents Chaco Landscapes: Sensory and Political Engagements with Place. In her talk she shares insights into past and present social, political, and sensorial relationships across the greater Chaco landscape. She explores how archaeologists can work together with Native peoples to influence the public understanding of contemporary economic/extractive projects, including those in northwest New Mexico.

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Guidelines for Collaboration: IARC Leads National Trend in Collaborative Museum Work

The School for Advanced Research (SAR) is pleased to announce the publication of the Guidelines for Collaboration, theoretical and practical guides to building successful collaborations between Indigenous communities, museums, and other collecting institutions. The Guidelines are the product of several years of critical discourse between over sixty Native and non-Native museum professionals, cultural leaders, artists, and scholars experienced in collaborative work in various institutions in the United States, Canada, and New Zealand. Available only in limited release until now, the Guidelines are already being used by internationally recognized institutions including Chicago’s Field Museum and University of California–Los Angeles (UCLA) in collaboration with the Getty Conservation Institute.

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A Sunny Studio Fosters Creativity

Two decades ago, with a vision of a space for artists that would elicit feelings of warmth and personality, SAR commissioned a new artist studio. The Native American artist fellowship program—then in its fourth year—needed a space more conducive to artistic creativity. The Dubin Studio was built adjacent to the Indian Arts Research Center (IARC) through the generosity of Ronald and Susan Dubin. Learn more about SAR’s two most recent contemporary Native American artist fellows and the Dubin Studio’s continued legacy of supporting artists through the open working space.

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White Paper “Aging in Place: Challenges and Prospects”

“Aging in place” is a common phrase meaning that older people prefer to age (most frequently through the end of their lives) in their homes, in spaces that represent their lives, and ideally close to family and friends. This white paper is the result of a salon held at the School for Advanced Research (SAR) that took place on June 6, 2019, in Santa Fe, New Mexico, which was generously sponsored by the Ethel-Jane Westfeldt Bunting Foundation.

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Meredith Davidson
Director of Public Programs and Communications


Michael F. Brown
President, School for Advanced Research
Subjects: Anthropology and popular culture, indigenous peoples of Amazonia, new religious movements, protecting indigenous cultural property from misuse

Elysia Poon
Acting Director, Indian Arts Research Center
Subjects: Museum education, Museums and Native Source community collaboration, Southwestern Native American Art, Museum Practices with Native American Communities

Paul Ryer
Director, SAR Scholar Programs
Subjects: Cuban diaspora, cultural anthropology

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