HRAF News Vol. 2020-4
HRAF Supports Online Teaching and Learning
HRAF addresses creative ways to transition to virtual classrooms in our three-part series on remote learning , which includes tips for building anthropology syllabi using our eHRAF databases and open-access resources. Our latest post on the archaeology of chocolate explores the ancient Mesoamerican origins of cacao. HRAF's featured global scholar for April is Sandi James , a PhD candidate in Public Health and Social Policy at La Trobe University. We are pleased to announce that the Carol R. Ember Book Prize from the Society for Anthropological Sciences has been named in honor of HRAF's president.
A message to our members

In the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic, we are all endeavoring to adjust to a new reality of teaching and learning remotely due to university campus closures and self-isolation. Physical and mental health and well-being are a priority for all involved. Yet maintaining connectivity between faculty and students while continuing the education process is an important factor in keeping our academic communities safe, healthy, and engaged throughout these challenging times. Due to present circumstances, HRAF is able to extend free trials for institutions and individuals to the end of the academic year. 
The transition to remote learning is a daunting experience for participants on both sides of the screen. It represents a challenge that is best met by working together to recreate a virtual classroom environment sensitive to the needs of all involved. 

Dr. Fran Barone has produced a 3-part series including creative ways to transition to remote learning in anthropology.

The first post presents an overview of eHRAF products, membership information, and extensions to our free trials. The second post features In-Class Activities from Teaching eHRAF. The third post assesses the need to quickly "pivot to online" to finish out the current semester, and the unforeseeable and unpredictable "remote futures" that await us.

The latest post by Matthew Longcore explores the ancient Mesoamerican origins of cacao and tells the archaeological story of chocolate, from its beginnings as an elite beverage for the Olmec, Maya, and Aztec.

The post draws heavily from eHRAF Archaeology and from the book The True Story of Chocolate , by Michael and Sophie Coe. The late Michael Coe was Professor Emeritus of Anthropology at Yale. Sophie Coe, an anthropologist and food historian, was the author of  America’s First Cuisines .

Based on linguistic evidence, the authors suggest that the Olmec might have been the first to domesticate the cacao tree and to discover the process of making chocolate. The post examines scientific research that supports this hypothesis.

The Human Relations Area Files (HRAF) at Yale University is pleased to announce that the Society for Anthropological Sciences (SAS) has named their annual book prize after Dr. Carol R. Ember , President of HRAF.

The Carol R. Ember Book Prize recognizes books whose significant theoretical, empirical, or methodological contributions to anthropology embody the mission of the Society for Anthropological Sciences to advance the scientific study of human societies. Single or multi-authored books, including edited volumes, are eligible. Any submitted book is ineligible for submission to future competitions. There is no monetary award associated with the prize. To apply please contact Dr. Douglas Hume at

HRAF is pleased to feature the research of our HRAF Global Scholars . This month we are featuring Sandi James (pictured left) , a PhD candidate in Public Health and Social Policy at La Trobe University in Australia.

Sandi's research topic is "Exploring Alcohol use in Sabah, Malaysia: Preliminary results from an ethnographic study in the Kadazandusun culture." She is using anthropological data and ethnographic research from eHRAF World Cultures to further facilitate her study.

To support funding priorities such as the HRAF Global Scholarship program and the development of our open access resources, please consider making a tax-deductible donation .

HRAF at Yale University|