Each conversation with him, and reading of his work, took us on a new path. But I learned to love anthropology and economics through his work. He may have passed but his influence lives on. He was a person with so many facets that it is only by opening up this space to a community of remembrance that we can engage with his legacy. It prompted a 2015 YouGov poll that seemed to underline the thesis, revealing that 37 per cent of British workers believe that their job makes “no meaningful contribution to the world”. This says much about the influence he had on me at a personal level. I had already discussed some of his ideas on early human history with him, and I was extremely grateful to him for giving time to me and my own developing thoughts on magic over the last year. He was the reason I decided to study Social Anthropology at LSE, and is the reason I am doing my masters. I am glad to have known him and proud that he generously acknowledged us, the admin folk in the office, in his book, Bullshit Jobs. The essay, about the pointlessness of much work in post-industrial society, hit a nerve. What always struck me about David was the fact that, despite his encyclopaedic knowledge of the deep political and economic history and comparative ethnography of man’s inhumanity to woman and other men, he was always optimistic about the future. David threw himself into the struggles there, be it … This year as one of the GTAs on his course, I found out that David was really generous on a personal level as well. I wish everyone here and all other close friends/colleagues of David patience and hope for a better future. September 2020. His questions and insights shape much of my research. He took aim at the pointless bureaucracy of modern life, memorably coining the term ‘b*****t jobs’. LSE Anthropologists are passionate about teaching and strive to maintain a warm and welcoming atmosphere in our department. Instead, to share and enjoy our ideas at the table together. He opened my eyes to the inconsistencies, delusions and misconceptions of the modern world and their incalculable costs to humanity, all through his writings and whatever piece of footage of him ends up on Youtube. He was a giant in anthropology whose voracious reading and skill with words conveyed his deep love for the discipline. His enthusiastic laughs in moments of recognition, his witted and quirky links to Soviet astronauts or telepathic communication, and his longish digressions on pirates and kings … I will miss having you around David. I knew David almost entirely through reading his work. We loved you dearly, we will miss you sorely. This was the case between villagers and officials where I was doing fieldwork; but other than recognising its truth, I didn’t quite know what to do with the idea. A proud Welshman from humble beginnings, David left home for the first time in 1949 to undertake his Law degree at LSE. David proposed to give it to her and to sign it. We had the Hare Rama Hare Krishna free lunch that they serve to students on the campus. David was a huge figure at LSE, challenging all of us to think differently. He was one of the few intellectuals of our time to link activist practice with high-level analysis throughout his career. RIP. The many, many words of solidarity are refreshing at this time of isolation. He never pandered, not to anyone, and least of all a child he promised me would grow up to change the world. Many years later, what has had the deepest impact are his original and thought-provoking lectures, and every now and then I would turn to his work to find out what new relevant issues he would shed light onto. I will miss you, you were a genuinely good person x, “The world is yours, so as ours,but A professor of anthropology at the London School of Economics, Graeber … David was a fantastic individual, but above all else, I will remember him as an incredibly kind man. He was not only a genius, but also a fervid and dedicated activist who cared about society, values and people. This is such an astonishingly sad and untimely loss. He was credited with coining the slogan “We are the 99 per cent” but, ever the good anarchist, refused to take sole credit, describing it as a “collective creation”. LSE Terra Society was pleased to present David Graeber, who discussed some of the ideas set out in 'Fragments of an Anarchist Anthropology' as part of … When necessary, criminal justice was carried out by a mob, but even then a lynching required permission from the accused’s parents. One of the core ideas for teaching anthropological theory ‘in context’ that emerged was really an idea David had proposed earlier: we should start the course with the idea that anthropology is defined by curiosity – curiosity at the margins of empire. We are delighted that he had finally found happiness with Nika. David was a living ancestor and shall remain as so—an everlasting radical energy that guides us and that continues to live amongst us. Pilkington, Philip and Graeber, David (2011) What is debt? https://www.nytimes.com/2020/09/04/books/david-graeber-dead.html. Notify me of follow-up comments by email. You truly showcased the sheer power of anthropology. Thank you David for all your care, honesty, guidance, and for modeling to many of us what committed activism looks like/is/ could be. Indeed, Prof. David Graeber was an insightful and courageous anthroplogist whom we in the academic world would live to miss. He made my days so much brighter and I loved working with him. And that I had not found yet a way to stop being an LSE trained anthropologist. As I got to know David more, I realised how generous he was; with his time, his thoughts, his food. It so sad to hear of the passing of a great mentor and friend. I’ve lost track of the number of times I’ve said, in conversations with friends, partners, parents, “David Graeber’s got a really interesting take on that”, or sent a link to something David wrote. It is a place where I find myself often these days. And in the end isn’t that what they were meant to get out of their education? His commitment to being bold, being clear and being a voice to be heard should lead all of us in the years to come. Head of Department, LSE Anthropology. Similarly, I come from a working/lower middle class background and I’m on my (merry) way into academia. But your intellectual, activist and humane legacy inspire us all to keep struggling for the demise of an exploitative capitalist world order that continues to bring suffering and deaths to billions of people around the world. I feel such a devastating loss by his passing and feel that the world has lost someone so uniquely brilliant. At the time, I found this experience extremely disconcerting. The year I joined the LSE Anthropology Department for my master’s degree, David Graeber was assigned to be the academic advisor for a lot of students. What an extraordinary ability to inspire thought and action in the world. With deepest love. Your commitment to brilliantly illustrate to us, anthropology could be, despite the perverse academic culture, continues to inspire us. He was a hugely talented intellectual whose work – on value, debt, bureaucracy, kings, BS work and more – illuminated so much for us within anthropology, yet he also had the rare gift of being able to reach a wide non academic audience, communicating complex ideas with lucidity and humour. David Graeber, the anthropologist who was influential in the Occupy Wall Street movement and is believed to have coined the phrase, “We are the 99%,” has died at 59. The Telegraph values your comments but kindly requests all posts are on topic, constructive and respectful. To me, he was a true anthropologist in the sense of being able to translate his brilliant and always direly needed ideas to a wider community, sparking debate and fresh ideas not only within academia but profoundly touching everyday life and everyday people. I didn’t know David personally but just having him and his ideas floating around the LSE—particularly, for me, his thoughts on bullshit and class solidarity—made it an *infinitely* better place to be. Thank you for making that place a home for him. As someone said above, Rest In Power. Whenever I visited David in London he’d take me around LSE and introduce me to his wonderful friends there, and then we’d get a coffee and spend hours just writing or working in his office. I’ll also miss David’s even-handed manner in meetings – the way he would arch his eyebrows and nod whilst rocking his head from side to side when I was saying something reasonable, and screw up his face if the suggestion was just a little bit too wild or ill thought-through. And he was an incredible teacher, inspiring everyone who listened: For one course a few years ago he put Gregory Bateson’s Naven on the reading list, and over the summer break read just about everything ever written on Naven. A theorist with a sensibility that transmitted passion and energy, fully committed to his ideals, through and through – a true character in himself. Saddened and shocked to hear about David’s death. Against those who saw in the writings of Evans-Pritchard some kind of Foucauldian panopticon, David pointed out that EP carefully avoided giving the British colonial authorities the information they wanted, at the same time used his knowledge of local society to prevent the more ‘idiotic abuses’ of the colonial officials. And that global governance is so keen to erase accounts of these other forms of being, precisely because to become aware of them, and to share their knowledge, “allows us to see everything we are already doing in a new light. David made me feel less lonely and isolated whilst explaining so clearly why the job was so harmful. In 2015, a group of students launched a "Free University of London" from an occupation at the London School of Economics. I never interacted with him personally, but his books made me appreciate what anthropology can and should do, that is, take risks, speak clearly and side with the little guy. If there’s any consolation is that there is still so much there to read and learn, and share, but the world will never be the same without his courage and discernment. Nika his wife must be in all our thoughts. I remember him sitting, usually in a waistcoat, in his elaborately-carpeted office, talking and laughing, with an adoring line of students stretching down the hallway, waiting to see him. ‘He cared deeply about his students, as well as about the welfare of the academic precariat. David Graeber, who coined the phrase ‘We are the 99 percent,’ came to the UK in 2007, lecturing at Goldsmiths University for six years before joining the London School of Economics in 2013. In technological terms, we are quite capable of this. He was 59 years old. He took aim at the pointless bureaucracy of modern life, memorably coining the term ‘bullshit jobs’. How David Graeber Cancelled a Colleague written by Claire Lehmann At the height of the #MeToo scandal in 2018, when dozens of actresses were coming forward with sordid testimonies about Harvey Weinstein’s sexual predation, a much more obscure scandal was unfolding around an academic journal involving the anthropologist David Graeber. | David GRAEBER 2012 ... trust for David Graeber.” He of course replied that would only matter if she was dead. Read in: EN / PL. Because he was David I always forgave him immediately , I’ll miss him walking into our office, usually in his socks and sporting tweed trousers accompanied by a cheerful waistcoat. I’m also thinking with admiration and gratitude of David’s eloquent, forthright, inspiring and important support of Jeremy Corbyn and a Labour Party for the many, not the few. He showed us that anthropology matters, that it has something to say in the cacophony of the disciplines. Because of spending cuts mandated by the IMF, he discovered, the central government had abandoned the area, leaving the inhabitants to fend for themselves. In the book that David always said was his first and his best, Lost People, he wrote that the fundamental measure of our humanity lies in what we cannot know about each other, and that to recognise another person as human would be to recognise the limits of one’s possible knowledge of them. David set me free from a traditional mindset of what successful work looks like and what people need to do to be successful. David Graeber, Professor of Anthropology at the LSE Credit: Shutterstock David Graeber, who has died aged 59, was a prominent anarchist and self … I’ll never forget his humourous stance on the election campaign at the time. He had the kind heart to take time week after week to listen to a second year student who wanted to talk about a research project with student activists in Mexico, listened patiently and gave the most thought-provoking insights. He told me out of the blue he had spoken to the department chair so I would get one of the coveted graduate student offices that were available. The modern era, however, had “got it completely backwards. It was brilliant, dazzling, and fascinating (though, in truth, I did not understand some of it, perhaps much of it). So, in homage, I urge all of us not to wait. LONDON -- David Graeber, who helped organize the Occupy Wall Street movement, has died in Venice, his agent said. As a lecturer students found David inspiring and also sometimes confusing:). He took the time to talk to Portobello Radio, the chaotic station that serves North Kensington. 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