Paper Humans

About the Cart

My name is Celia, and I’m a librarian with a background in anthropology, writing, and Eurasian studies. I worked for several years in Kazakhstan, and those posts are still very popular on this blog (which was previously known as! I also had a blog of artwork about curvy women at Shapely Women.

Other places I’ve written for the web:

  • The rhetoric of luck among the 99 percent (Sociological Images)
  • How to catch a street taxi in Astana, Kazakhstan (Matador Network)
  • The internet for her: Amazon reviews as comedic genre (Pop Anth)
  • Securing, sharing, and archiving ethnographic field data (Savage Minds)
  • Selling dreams of the good life in Kazakhstan (Sapiens)

You can also find my academic articles and presentation slides online, and can download several fun books from this blog.

With that, note that this is a personal blog. I know professional contacts can find this (hi, friends!) but it’s not a portfolio. It includes posts from years ago that I may not agree with now. But there’s value in sharing past reflections in a space that’s independent from larger media. I’m happy to continue the conversation, and invite you to join me.


    1. Thanks for the comment! Google reader should track the RSS feed if you simply put the URL in, and there should be an “email me new posts” sidebar, although perhaps that’s invisible on a phone. I’d love to read what you’ve written about Kazakh names!

  1. Susannah

    I’m so glad I found your website. I was searching for information on working as a librarian abroad (seems like I got a lot of hits for librarians in Kazakhstan!). I am working on an MLIS/MEd Instructional Tech with my specialization in academic libraries. It seems like many librarians jobs abroad are sponsored by schools who want you to have your school media licensure, which I do not have. I would love to hear about your experience you gained before going abroad (anything, lay it on me), and how you found your job, etc. Many thanks and love!!

  2. Cee

    Susannah, I’m so glad this is useful. I know at least ten westerners who have cycled through libraries in Kazakhstan and I think it’s been a great experience for most of us. I’ll try to get a blog post going about how I went abroad and found my job… and send it to you soon!

  3. Yeldos

    Hello, Celia
    I accidentally came across the website and find your posts very interesting. Being a kazakh citizen, it was nice to know your view of our country, customs and people. The post about how to catch a taxi in Astana is absolutely true:) By the way, you don’t live in Astana anymore, do you?

    1. Yeldos

      California is my dream place to visit actually. Especially Hollywood:)
      I haven’t yet. But I certainly would go. Maybe the next week, on 4th July, it is a Day of the USA in EXPO.

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