Hugh Raffles

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Hugh Raffles at the 2011 Texas Book Fair.

Hugh Raffles is an anthropologist whose work explores relationships among people, animals, and things. His writing has appeared in academic and popular venues, including Granta, Public Culture, Natural History, Orion, American Ethnologist, The New York Times, and The Best American Essays.


Raffles grew up in London, England, and moved to New York in the early 1990s. He lives in New York City and teaches at The New School.

Awards and criticism[edit]

Raffles was the recipient of the 2003 Victor Turner Prize for Ethnographic Writing of the Society for Humanistic Anthropology and of a Choice Outstanding Academic Title Award for In Amazonia: A Natural History.

In 2009, Raffles was awarded a Whiting Award. In 2010, Insectopedia was the winner of the 2011 Orion Book Award and received a Special Award from the Society for Humanistic Anthropology. The book was selected by The New York Times as a Notable Book of 2010.

Writing in the New York Times Book Review, Philip Hoare described Insectopedia as "impossible to categorize, wildly allusive and always stimulating."[1]

Selected writing[edit]


  • "Mother Nature's Melting Pot," The New York Times, Op-Ed, April 2, 2011.
  • "Sweet Honey on the Block," The New York Times, Op-Ed, July 7, 2010.
  • "A Conjoined Fate," Orion (2010).
  • "Cricket Fighting," Granta 98: The Deep End (Summer 2007).
    • Reprinted in Adam Gopnik ed., The Best American Essays (2008).
  • "Jews, Lice, and History," Public Culture (2007).
  • "Towards a Critical Natural History," Antipode (2005).
  • "Jungle" in Patterned Ground: Ecologies of Nature and Culture, ed. Stephan Harrison, Steve Pile, and Nigel Thrift (2004).
  • "Further Reflections on Amazonian Environmental History: Transformations of Rivers and Streams," (with Antoinette WinklerPrins), Latin American Research Review (2003).
  • "Intimate Knowledge," International Social Science Journal (2002), reprinted in Nico Stehr, Reiner Grundmann, eds. (2005). Knowledge and Society: Forms of Knowledge. Taylor & Francis. .



External links[edit]