The Anthropologist


She travels to some jungle tribe

As an ordeal to prove her worth

And empathising with them, notes

Their rites of fishing, death and birth

Her passage into adulthood’s

Expressed by PhD, and then

Co-authorship of articles

Until the monster in its den

Grabs out and swallows her entire

To sit inside its belly and write

How mining can be reconciled

With local lore and day is night.

This presents the progress of the Anthropologist’s career as if it were an anthropological study. The irony is intended!

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  1. Lovely….my sister wants to be an anthropologist and that is a bit of a mystery to me as she is a dentist already! I’ll send her this one….

  2. I think being an anthropologist would be more fun than being a dentist, unless you’re a sadistic Nazi. Also whereas the people subjected to dentistry are quite likely to complain if they don’t like it, and directly or indirectly pay for it, the subjects of anthropology rarely have a chance to comment on what’s said about them. It would be amusing if they did!

    A friend of mine who did anthropology at university also liked this poem. Thanks, Neel.


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