Anthropology for Kids

By | September 5, 2013

Some friends and I are working on a series of books titled Anthropology for Kids. Each book will contain different ways of relating to a major human question – what Dostoevsky called “cursed questions” – such as death, family, love, state, money, war and so on.

The books will contain and expatiate on, in very short texts, topics on each of the issues. Each topic will also be illustrated with photographs. Each book will have an introduction and a list of references at the end. It will also be translated into at least five languages (but we have plans to expand to up to 20), and we are going to run a website which we hope can facilitate discussions about the topics.

As part of the book production process, we are also going to publish interviews with academics and researcher/activists.

Our project is an attempt to make knowledge generated by academic anthropologists available to a wider international audience, not just to children, but also to as many non-academic adults as possible.

Below is an example of the sorts of things we are thinking of. It is on a book on Labour that we just started working on. We would appreciate your thoughts on it in general, plus your suggestions on the topics/subheadings, the texts they should contain, references, and people to interview.

We look forward to your thoughts.


  • What is labor? (an introduction)

  • Forced Labour (slavery in ancient Greece)

  • Proletarians in Ancient Rome (as producers of offsprings)

  • Peasants in Ancient China (sometimes collective work)

  • Medieval monks (working, despite vow of poverty)

  • Labor and work without expectation of payment

  • Reproductive labor (women and labor)

  • Child labour (with examples)

  • Organising workers (labour unions)

  • Leisure as work (professional sportsmen, for instance)

  • Globalisation and labor (the free movement of capital but not labor)

  • Work that one pays to get (internships that are auctioned, for instance)

  • Precarity of modern work (reskilling, deskilling)

Thank you,