Robert Jack Smith, professor emeritus of anthropology and former Department of Anthropology chair, died Jan. 31 at age 85. A public celebration of life is set for 1 to 4 p.m. tomorrow, Feb. 6, in the Holiday Inn, 2747 S. 11th St., in Kalamazoo, with a service slated for 1:30 to 2 p.m.

Erika Friedl Loefler, emerita Meader Professor of Anthropology, has written a new book titled "Warm Hearts and Sharp Tongues: Life in 555 Proverbs from the Zagros Mountains of Iran." The book was published by New Academic Press this past spring. The collection and annotation of this large body of proverbs provides an insightful ethnography of the philosophy of life of a Lur tribe in the Zagros Mountains, a fascination Persian people. Friedl Loeffler collected the sayings over the past 50 years during many visits and observed the local way of life as it changed from "the old times" to modernity.

41st Annual Archaeology Field School: You are invited to participate in the 41st annual WMU archaeological field school directed by Dr. Michael Nassaney. The program will continue archaeological investigations of Fort St. Joseph, a mission-garrison-trading post complex established by the French in 1691 and occupied for nearly a century in Niles, Michigan. Students will receive instruction in research design and the importance of archaeology in the examination of the fur trade, colonialism, and culture change in the western Great Lakes. Training will include standard techniques of site survey and excavation, as well as the processing, cataloging, and analysis of artifacts and feature data. In addition students will participate in a community service-learning project in which they will work closely with members of the Fort St. Joseph Museum, Support the Fort, the City of Niles, and other community groups who share an interest in the preservation and interpretation of the site.

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We provide students anthropological knowledge and critical thinking skills through teaching, mentoring, and conducting both scholarly and applied research. Anthropology is a means to enhance our understanding of the human condition by integrating historical, cultural and biological perspectives. Our faculty and students are committed to the practice of anthropology as a critical social science that appreciates human diversity and challenges global inequities.

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