Fonds UBCA-ARC-1038 - Michael M. Ames fonds

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Michael M. Ames fonds

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  • Multiple media

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  • Source of title proper: Title based on the provenance of the fonds

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Physical description

10.40 m of textual records and other material.

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Biographical history

Michael Ames was born in Vancouver and attended the University of British Columbia, where he graduated with a B.A. in Anthropology in 1956. He continued his education at Harvard University, earning his Ph.D. in Social Anthropology in 1961. Ames returned to UBC as an assistant professor in 1964, rising to full professor in 1970. In addition to his work in the department, Ames also became Director of the Museum of Anthropology (MOA) in 1974. From 1974 to 1976, Ames was president of the Shastri Indo-Canadian Institute, established in 1968 with funding from the Government of India to promote Indian studies in Canada. A recipient of the Simon Guggenheim Fellowship in 1970-1971, Ames was elected a Fellow of the Royal Society of Canada in 1979 and promoted as a Fellow of the Society for Applied Anthropology in 1996. Ames also has an extensive list of publications in a broad range of topics, from religion and social organizations in South Asia, First Nations affairs to museums and popular culture, including the monograph Cannibal Tours & Glass Boxes: The Anthropology of Museums, published by the University of British Columbia in 1993.
Ames retired from the MOA directorship at the end of June 1997 and received emeritus professor status in 1998. From 1998 to 2002, Ames co-taught with adjunct professor Jim Green several undergraduate anthropology courses on Vancouver's Downtown Eastside. He also chaired the Dean of Arts First Nations Language Programme advisory committee from 1998 to 2002. In 2002, in cooperation with Associate Dean Margery Fee and the Musqueam Band Council, a joint "Musqueam 101" seminar at Musqueam was loosely patterned after the Humanities 101 programme. The Provost's Office funds it. In July 2002, Ames returned to the MOA as Acting Director for one year, then extended to August 2004.

Custodial history

Scope and content

Fonds consists of departmental records from Anthropology and Sociology (1964-2000); Canadian Sociology and Anthropology Association records (1970-1979); and material relating to the Simon Fraser University dispute concerning the Department of Political Science, Sociology and Anthropology (1969-1971). Ames assembled this group of records through his participation on the C.S.A.A. team, which studied the situation. The papers also include Ames's descriptions of the Board of Directors of the Canadian Museums Association (1980-1983) and the Shastri Indo-Canadian Institute (1967-1995). The material relating to the Shastri Institute includes records generated or collected by Ames and other members of the Institute at UBC. The names of other members are indicated in the file title. Also, the fonds contains manuscripts and drafts, records about Ames's research, courses taught by Ames, a variety of conferences and seminars, and records about Ames’ participation in several museum studies program reviews. Finally, the fonds also contain Ames' involvement with the Museum of Anthropology (MOA). Most records as Director and Acting Director of MOA are held at the MOA Archives. In total, there are 16 series: UBC Department of Anthropology and Sociology series, Canadian Sociology and Anthropology Association series, Department of Political Science, Sociology, and Anthropology (Simon Fraser University) Dispute series, Canadian Museums Association series, Shastri Indo-Canadian Institute series, Assorted Associations and Conferences series, Manuscripts, Drafts, and Papers series, General Correspondence series and a Biographical series, Course Materials series, Program Review series, Research series, Museum of Anthropology (MOA) series, Photographic series, Audio Cassette series and Computer Tape series (last three series were added were acquired in 2007).

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Immediate source of acquisition

Accruals transferred to the University Archives by Michael Ames in 2003. Another accrual containing information pertaining to Ames' Musqueam 101 course and Squamish Language course, as well as additions to existing series added in 2007.


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Physical description

Other material includes c. 4900 photographs (prints, slides and negatives), 17 audio cassettes and 1 computer tape (no method of accessing the computer tape at this time).

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Revised in June 2020.

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