Submit an entry

Before writing an entry, please check with us at admin[at] to make sure the topic is not currently in production. Even when you have received permission to author an entry, this does not mean that the entry will be accepted, as acceptance depends strictly on peer-review. CEA authors should hold a PhD in Anthropology (or a very closely related discipline); they need to have demonstrated expertise of the anthropological literature on the topic in question; and they should have previously published in peer-reviewed journals (preferrably on the topic in question).

Entry structure

Word count: 5,000 words (including footnotes but excluding the bibliography). Unfortunately, we can only review entries that meet this target by a margin of +/- 600 words. 

Important text elements include:

  • An abstract of 200-300 words: The abstract should tell the reader what the topic/concept in question is and why it is important for a broad audience (beyond anthropology). It should then foreground the key contributions that anthropologists have made to its understanding and clearly lay out the structure of the entry that follows. Providing an abstract is essential for the review process. 

  • An introduction: The introduction draws in a general audience. It broadly follows the structure of a. making clear why the topic is important to a general public b. stating what one understands the topic to mean (initial definitions can be challenged and debated later on, in the main body) c. (what other academic disciplines/politicians/the media think is interesting about the topic) d. what key insights anthropology has provided regarding the topic and how the entry will proceed. A good example for this structure is our entry on tax

  • A man body divided into 3-4 subsections with short descriptive titles. That will make it easier for non-specialist to follow the text structure and to use the navigation bar in our site.

  • A conclusion that conveys to a broad audience why studying the topic in question remains relevant for the future

  • A note on contributor of around 50 words

  • A line with contact details i.e. postal address, email address (and ORCID if available)

Style guidelines

CEA entries summarize anthropology's contributions to individual topics. They aim at academic readers as well as the general public. In order to cater to this broad audience, entries focus in tone and complexity on undergraduates with limited to no prior knowledge of Social or Cultural Anthropology. They explain individual concepts (such as 'colonialism', 'climate change', 'ethnicity' etc.) without the use of jargon, whilst referencing the major anthropological works pertaining to their topic (please do not try to cite the whole field). They explain each major theoretical point by drawing on concrete ethnographic examples from around the world. They do not put forward individual arguments but they summarize insights and debates from our discipline. That is why they need to be as balanced in tone as possible.

To write for a general audience, CEA entries focus primarily on the main concepts themselves rather than the influence that these concepts may have had on anthropology as a discipline (the latter can of course be part of an entry). Authors may be tempted to write a literature review that focuses on recent changes in our discipline, yet this is not what we are after. Instead, authors should please:

  • Describe the interesting insights and debates that anthropologists have contributed to the study of the topic in question. (Please try not to focus too much on what anthropologists have done, but foreground what they have found out or considered noteworthy. (You may throughout the entry want to draw out what distinguishes anthropology from other disciplines, or you may simply focus on key debates that anthropologists have had without speaking explicitly about anthropology. Either approach can work.) 

  • Use vivid, concrete ethnographic examples to illustrate all theoretical discussions. Using examples from different regions around the world.

  • Make clear of the beginning of each section what the section is about and how it fits into your overall narrative.

  • Introduce ideas directly and add their proponents as a reference afterwards, rather than presenting ideas by starting with whatever author is known for them. This is not always possible, but a good general rule as it allows readers to cut straight to the idea. 

  • Minimize brackets, footnotes and lists of all kinds.

  • Use short sentences whenever possible.

  • Briefly explain all technical terms that may be used such as 'social evolutionism', 'dependency theory' or 'functionalism'.

  • Use short, descriptive titles for all sub-sections.

For examples of the writing style that we are after please see our entries on the anthropocene, games or tourism

Editorial guidelines 

Spelling and punctuation:

The CEA follows UK spelling and punctuation conventions in the body of the text except in the matter of the serial comma, which the encyclopedia does use. Single quotation marks should be used for quotations in the text, double quotation marks for quotations within quotations. Punctuation falls outside of quotation marks. Minimum capitalisation (sentence-style capitalisation) is used in text and in references. All numbers under 100 are written out (including centuries: nineteenth century instead of 19th century), except for statistics and ages. Authors are introduced with first and last name when mentioned in text for the first time. The original spelling/punctuation conventions of quoted material are kept in place if they differ from UK conventions (for example, if quoting from a book published in the United States).


The encyclopedia uses the Chicago Manual of Style (17th ed.) author-date reference style (Chapter 15) with some exceptions, outlined below. References are placed in the body of the text in parentheses, not in footnotes, with a full citation provided for every publication cited in text in the References section (except in regards to newspaper articles, see below). 

Our copy editor may ask authors to improve bibliographies to match the requirements set out here. As a general rule, works should be listed in alphabetical order of authors, translators should be credited, and if the edition cited has been published long after the original, the original year of publication should be given in parentheses.  

Only the primary city of publication is listed. 

When citing material accessed or published online, please do provide a DOI where possible as well as date accessed (“Accessed 2 January 2021”).

References in the text: 

References should be cited in the text by the author’s first name, date of publication, and page number, if applicable. Please note the use of a colon, and space between the colon and page number, which is an exception to the Chicago style. (Smith 2002) or (Jones 2005: 4).

Use a semicolon between multiple references in a single parenthetical citation, and a comma between nonconsecutive page references. (Johnson 1999; Alston 1978; Carter 2006: 4, 19)

Do not use “ibid.” or similar designations.

For two or more authors in a parenthetical citation, use “&” and not the word “and” spelled out(Bailey & Johnson 1993)

Both the name and the year fall within parentheses unless the name is part of the text. Michael Jones (2005) writes that…

Use the first author’s name plus et al. for references with four or more authors.(Salazar et al. 2017)

Newspaper articles should be cited as footnotes as follows; when cited in footnotes, the newspaper article need not be included in References. 

1. Henley, Jon. 2016.“Is the EU really dictating the shape of your bananas.” The Guardian, May 11.


Full reference examples:


Charon, Rita. 2006. Narrative medicine: Honoring the stories of illness. Oxford: Oxford University Press. 

Malinowski, Bronislaw. 1932. The sexual life of savages, 3rd edition. London: Routledge and Kegan Paul.

Mandeville, Bernard. (1714) 1989. Fable of the bees: Or, private vices, publick benefits. Introduction by Phillip Harth. New York: Penguin Random House.

Mauss, Marcel. (1925) 2016. The gift. Expanded edition. Selected, annotated, and translated by Jane L. Guyer. Chicago: HAU Books. 

Strathern, Marilyn. 1988. The gender of the gift: Problems with women and problems with society in Melanesia. Berkeley: University of California Press.

Taylor, Charles. 1989. Sources of the self: The making of modern identity. Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press.

Book with multiple authors

Salazar, Juan Francisco, Sarah Pink, Andrew Irving, and Johannes Sjöberg. 2017. Anthropologies and futures: Researching emerging and uncertain worlds. London: Bloomsbury.

Edited book

Appadurai, Arjun, ed. 1986. The social life of things: Commodities in perspective. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.

Henare, Amiria, Martin Holbraad, and Sari Wastell, eds. 2007. Thinking through things: Theorising artefacts ethnographically. London: Routledge

von Oswald, Margarete, and Jonas Tinius, eds. 2020. Across anthropology: Troubling colonial legacies, museums, and the curatorial. Leuven: Leuven University Press.

Multiple texts by the same author

Kaberry, Phyllis. 1938. “Notes on the languages of the East Kimberley, North West Australia.” Oceania 8 (1): 90–103.

———. 1939. Aboriginal woman, sacred and profane. London: Routledge.

Forthcoming works

Kurik, Bob. n.d. “Emerging subjectivities in protest.” Forthcoming in The Sage handbook of resistance, edited by Steven Vallas and David Courpasson. Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage Publications.

Chapter in a book

Guyer, Jane L. 1995. “The Value of Beti bridewealth.” In Money matters: Instability, values and social payments in the modern history of West African communities, edited by Jane L. Guyer, 113–32. Portsmouth, NH: Heinemann.

Tcherkézoff, Serge. 2002. “Subjects and objects in Samoa: Ceremonial mats have a ‘soul’.” In People and things: Social mediations in Oceania, edited by Bernard

Juillerat and Monique Jeudy-Ballini, 27–51. Durham: Carolina Academic Press.

Book in translation

Agamben, Giorgio. 1998. Homo sacer: Sovereign power and bare life. Translated by Daniel Heller-Roazen. Stanford: Stanford University Press. 

Bergson, Henri. 1928 (1907). Creative evolution. Translated by Arthur Mitchell. London: Macmillan.

Original and translated text cited together

Bataille, Georges. 1976. “La Part maudite.” In Œuvres complètes. Vol. 7, 17–179. Paris: Gallimard. (English translation: 1991–1993. The accursed share: An essay on general economy. Vols. 1–3. Translated by Robert Hurley. New York: Zone Books.)

Reprinted book

Howard, Ebenezer. 1902 (1898). Garden cities of tomorrow. London: Swan.

Journal article

Freeman, James, and Marcos Burgos. 2016. “Accumulation by forced removal: The thinning of Rio de Janeiro’s favelas in preparation for the Games.” Journal of Latin American Studies 49: 549–77. 

Guyer, Jane I. 2007. ‘Prophecy and the near future: Thoughts on macroeconomic, evangelical, and punctuated Time’. American Ethnologist 34 (3): 409–21.

Weiner, Annette. 1985. “Inalienable wealth.” American Ethnologist 12 (2): 210–27. 

Jaffrelot, Christophe. 2016. “Narendra Modi between Hindutva and subnationalism: The Gujarati asmita of a Hindu Hriday Samrat.” India Review 15 (2): 2, 196–217.

Online journal

Bear, Laura, Karen Ho, Anna Tsing and Sylvia Yanagisako. 2015. “Gens: A feminist manifesto for the study of capitalism.” Fieldsights: Theorizing the contemporary, March 30. Accessed 3 April 2016. 

Online publication

Parrey, Arif Ayaz. 2016. “Them loose threads.” Kindle Magazine, April 2.


Mahmood, Sadia. 2014. “Minoritization of Pakistani Hindus (1947–1971).” PhD dissertation, Arizona State University. 

An institutional publication (no author)

NAE. 1943. United ... we stand: A report of the Constitutional Convention of the National Association of Evangelicals. Boston: N.A.E.

———. 1945. “Program of the third annual Convention [of the] National Association of Evangelicals ... Chicago, Illinois, May 1-3, 1945.”

Autoridad Nacional de Agua. 2014. Inventario de glaciares. Lima: Autoridad Nacional de Agua.

Conference proceedings 

Garau, Maia, Mel Slater, Vinoba Vinayagamoorthy, Andrea Brogni, Anthony Steed, and M. Angela Sasse. 2003. “The impact of avatar realism and eye gaze control on perceived quality of communication in a shared immersive virtual environment.” Proceedings of the SIGCHI Conference on Human Factors in Computing Systems: 529–36.


Lee, Grace, Caroline Libresco, and Austin Wilkin. 2013. American revolutionary: The evolution of Grace Lee Boggs. LeeLee Films.


We are always happy to receive up to two pictures (including captions) for particular entries, provided they are necessary to further the argument. If you do provide pictures, please ensure that you hold written permission from the copyright owners for all people who may appear in them. All pictures should be provided in .jpg format, with a minimum resolution of 890x440px.

Submit an entry

All manuscripts as well as all additional material should be uploaded to OJS. Please

Copyright: We can only accept original submissions that are not under review elsewhere. The copyright of all entries is held by their authors. Entries are licensed to the CEA under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International License. Thus, readers will be able to download, copy, share and adapt CEA material as long as they give appropriate credit, including the name of the authors and all other attribution parties. The license also means that the material authors provide may not be used by third parties for commercial purposes, i.e. for uses primarily intended for commercial advantage or monetary compensation. Manuscript submission and publication are free.

Review process

Members of our editorial board and external reviewers will review the abstract each entry before either reviewing the entries themselves or sending them to specialists in the respective field. This is why receiving an abstract with each entry is so important. We aim to ensure that authors receive constructive feedback. Reviews are 'single blind' meaning that reviewers know who authors are but authors will not know their reviewers. This allows reviewers to disclose potential conflicts of interest. 

While we cannot commit to fixed review times, we aim to provide authors with a first reply in less than 3 months of manuscript submission. Once a manuscript has been accepted we can copy-edit it and make it public in less than 3 weeks.