We are a collective of curated writings and writers focused on the themes of participant observation, personal ethnography, and humans in our unique environs.

We love the fundamental business of being humanesque. Issues of identity, culture, belonging or lack, vulnerability, collectivism, the body, ritual–anthropological subjects from a generalist’s view, or, cultural moments from a messy, personal perspective. Tightly snuggled with visuals for each feature, we publish in collected issues and individual articles: ethnography & essays, experiential narratives, fiction & poetry, visuals, conceptual work, and genre-bending, from voices in the literary field, the humanities, and the sciences.

We embrace a broad subject matter, in the name of ‘what it is to be / feel / resemble — or not — that which is human.’

We are, each of us, anthropoids.

Image: Kenzie Allen.

Background & Mission

Anthropoid began in 2013, with the concept of creating an online magazine and space which would welcome not only voices from the literary world, but also outside it, and from the sciences or other fields. In our mind, every poem or story is also an ethnography, and an artifact of our cultures (to illustrate, our ‘nonfiction’ section is referred to as ‘essays & ethnographies’). We also wanted to establish a different kind of relationship with our contributors and staff, which is why it has always been termed ‘a collective’ (of the ‘humanesque’)—we are always interested in the evolution of our contributors’ thoughts and work, and so we invite them to resubmit without any waiting period or to work on the publication, as well as often featuring staff writing which has been inspired by each issue’s development.

We’re not an ‘anthropology-themed’ magazine—rather, we share with anthropology an abiding interest in ‘the humanesque’ (which encompasses just about anything, really — the human and the ‘esque’), as well as wanting to further anthropology’s troubled but continuing process of indicting the biases of gaze. When we do have themed issues or mini-folios, we are not interested in literal interpretation but in what we can learn from the connections our contributors have made to a concept, or even how they subvert it. Always, we want to learn from what is sent to us, and to read each piece on its own terms.

From the outset, we’ve been interested in the visual alongside the written and in making space for multimodal pieces, for exploring what is possible in the online medium (as more than magazine—rather, as community). Our contributors, staff, and audience, come from all over the world, and from many walks of life. We’re committed to diversifying the literary landscape and our human conversation.