Scarborough, Isabel M., U. of Illinois, Urbana, IL - To aid research on 'Market Women Mothers and Daughters: Politics and Mobility in the New Bolivia,' supervised by Dr. Andrew Orta
ISABEL M. SCARBOROUGH, then a student at University of Illinois, Urbana, Illinois, received a grant in October 2007 to aid research on 'Market Women Mothers and Daughters: Politics and Mobility in the New Bolivia,' supervised by Dr. Andrew Orta. Market women in Bolivia have a long history of political participation and as brokers of ethnic concerns with broader populist social movements. This research sought to explain how recent processes of social and ethnic mobility across two generations affected identity negotiations and constructions for these women. The study is framed within the context of Bolivia's ongoing transformations where current state policies and ideology are based on a reversal of former neoliberal values and the importance of ethnicity and indigenousness in national belonging. Ethnographic fieldwork was carried out with two generations of market women using in-depth interviews and participant-observation methods. Research results confirmed the extent of this upward mobility through education, and how this journey affects broader economic practices, including how these women imagine, embody, and practice both the formal and informal markets, challenging this dichotomy. Additionally, queries on the current political participation of both market women and their university-graduate daughters show both groups fractured along rapidly escalating hostilities between the opposition and the government, which in turn reflect the conflict raging between the highland regions that support the state's indigenous-based politics and the lowland regions where the opposition decries the government's anti-capitalist stance.
Greenfield, Dana Emily, U. of California, San Francisco, CA - To aid research on 'Crossing the 'Valley of Death': Biomedical Innovation and Entrepreneurship in a Public University,' supervised by Dr. Vincanne Adams
PROVIDE A GENERAL DESCRIPTION OF YOUR PROJECT IN PLAIN ENGLISH (UNFORMATTED -- WITHOUT BULLETS OR NUMBERED LISTS -- 200 WORD MAXIMUM).
Since the 1980s, federal legislation has increasingly encouraged universities to capitalize on basic research through widening intellectual property regimes and industry partnerships, particularly in the biomedical sciences where new discoveries, drugs, and devices have recently been lagging. Concurrently, the transformation of biology into a science of engineering and the rise of venture capital, have encouraged scientists to become entrepreneurs and translate their academic research into their own start-up companies. The need to capitalize on academic research has intensified amidst current federal and local funding crises, raising questions about the future, direction and mission of public research universities, in particular. The proposed project is a year-long ethnographic study of a translational research institute at a public research university and medical center in California, with the mandate to transform scientists into entrepreneurs and the university into an engine of economic growth. This research aims to understand how the values and practices of market-driven medical innovation and entrepreneurship affect the trajectory, mission, and organization or research throughout the campus. My project will also trace what counts as 'innovation' in this context, asking what is possible and what is foreclosed at the current frontiers of medicine. This project will be based on participant-observation, interviews of entreprenuers, faculty, and staff, and analysis of published media. My research will contribute to a better understanding of how the funding of science relates to broader concerns over the role of the university and state in knowledge production, and the concrete impact of private capital on the contours, outcomes, and responsibilites of biomedical research.
Lorne McDougall, Kathleen, U.of Chicago, Chicago, IL - To aid research on 'Legitimate Culture: Producing Afrikanerness in Post-Apartheid South Africa,' supervised by Dr. Jean Comaroff
KATHLEEN LORNE MCDOUGALL, then a student at University of Chicago, Chicago, Illinois, received funding in November 2007 to aid research on 'Legitimate Culture: Producing Afrikanerness in Post-Apartheid South Africa,' supervised by Dr. Jean Comaroff.The focus of this investigation is how white Afrikaners in South Africa reformulate ideas of their national and cultural belonging in the face of dramatic political changes and a widely held belief that they are responsible for the horrors of apartheid. Many white Afrikaners perceive a threat of ethnocide in the high incidence of murders of Afrikaans farmers and in the sense of loss of cultural distinctiveness. However, for many black South Africans, Afrikaners themselves continue to be the source of threat to peaceful transition. For the Afrikaans genealogists such a difference becomes a matter of what are perceived to be co-existent but fundamentally different cultural histories. Stories of Afrikaner origins are re-told, affirming cultural identity but also a sense of Godly mission - and so, despite fears of cultural dissolution, cultural distinction is constantly affirmed. In these stories Afrikaans people may be depicted as threatened but their being threatened is seen to constitute a group identity, as this is a well-established narrative of cultural origin. While this used to be a history that was more race-specific and raced, it is now more one of distinction between cultural histories, and, for genealogists, often one that makes claims to a certain indigeneity through the inclusion of slave ancestors in family trees. Genealogies attempt links between cultural histories to family histories, and make biological and affective links between individual families and Afrikaner history, between individuals and a perceived cultural (or racial) guilt. However, the notion of history as hegemonic and as culturally distinct, makes it difficult to make sense on a personal level of cultural guilt -- people can simply say 'we were children of our time'.
Berry, Nicole S., U. of Michigan, Ann Arbor, MI - To aid research on 'Everyday Health Care Interactions and Obstetric Care Use Among Kaqchikel Women,' supervised by Dr. Bruce Mannheim
NICOLE S. BERRY, while a student at the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor, Michigan, received a grant in May 2002 to aid research on the use of obstetric care among Kaqchikel women in Guatemala, under the supervision of Dr. Bruce Mannheim. Berry spent 12 months (September 2002 to August 2003) in Sololá, Guatemala, investigating the influence of everyday interactions between Kaqchikel Mayan women and health-care workers on these women's decisions to seek emergency care during birthing difficulties. She collected data primarily through participant and nonparticipant observation and interviewing. She participated in educational efforts aimed at increasing the quality of emergency obstetric care, both for indigenous traditional birth attendants and for doctors working in the hospital. During two months at the local hospital, she observed 93 obstetric cases that came into the emergency room and recorded a subset of 34 of them. The audio recordings were transcribed with the help of trained assistants. Finally, Berry carried out extensive interviewing in the Kaqchikel village where she lived and the two neighboring villages that composed one health district. She interviewed a randomly chosen sample of 134 women and 15 men about the topic of birth. In each interview she recorded basic demographic information, investigated people's uses of health care resources, and obtained a detailed reproductive history with an emphasis on birthing complications.
Berry, Nicole S.2006. Kaqchikel Midwives, Home Births, and Emergency Obstetric Referrals in Guatemala: Contextualizing the Choice to Stay at Home. Social Science & Medicine 62:1958-1969.
Rendle, Katharine Alice Sheets, U. of Michigan, Ann Arbor, MI - To aid research on 'Negotiating Uncertainty: Risk, Responsibility, and the Unsettled Facts of the HPV Vaccine,' supervised by Dr. Elizabeth F.S. Roberts
KATHERINE A.S. RENDLE, then a student at University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, Michigan, was awarded a grant in October 2012 to aid research on 'Negotiating Uncertainty: Risk, Responsibility, and the Unsettled Facts of the HPV Vaccine,' supervised by Dr. Elizabeth F.S. Roberts. Using the promotion and uptake of the human papillomavirus (HPV) vaccine as a lens, this dissertation project explored how temporality and risk are at work in everyday life. Drawing from ethnographic field research in the San Francisco Bay Area, it explored how different actors including parents and health professionals in the United States are defining the 'right time' for children to be vaccinated. At the core of these temporal debates are contested claims over when -- and through what specific encounters -- the individual body becomes at risk for HPV exposure. In order to identify a target age for HPV vaccination, medical guidelines translate this individual moment into a collective moment. However, for many of the parents interviewed, the right time to vaccinate is perceived to be much later than the recommended age. To defend their desire to delay vaccination, parents often invoke claims to experiential evidence validated by a sense of knowing their child and his or her sexual and emotional development. Entangled within these claims are temporal assessments of risk, whereby parents weigh their child's (perceived) present risk of HPV exposure against the unknown risks of the vaccine itself.
Fujita, Masako, U. of Washington, Seattle, WA - To aid 'An Evolutionary Perspective on Mother-Offspring Vitamin A Transfer,' supervised by Dr. Bettina Shell Duncan
MASAKO FUJITA, then a student at University of Washington, Seattle, Washington, was awarded a grant in April 2006 to aid research on 'An Evolutionary Perspective on Mother-Offspring Vitamin A Transfer,' supervised by Dr. Bettina Shell-Duncan. This project investigated the perplexing decline in breastmilk vitamin A (VA) concentrations across the postpartum months. Applying the concept of life-history tradeoffs, this decline was hypothesized to be an evolved maternal reproductive strategy optimizing physiological reallocation of VA between competing needs of current and future reproduction depending on postpartum time and reproductive status. The hypotheses were tested using breastmilk VA and maternal hepatic VA data, collected among 250 lactating Ariaal mothers in northern Kenya, as indices for maternal investment respectively on current reproduction and future reproduction. Data indicated maternal hepatic VA is in a trade-off relationship with milk VA postpartum. Breastmilk VA does not track hepatic VA but instead declines despite increasing hepatic stores in the late postpartum period. Results shed light on the evolutionary ecological heritage of human micronutrient metabolism and human reproduction, and further illuminate policy directions for currently recommended public health strategy of high-dose postpartum maternal VA supplementation.
Fujita, Masako, Eric Roth, Yun-Kia Lo, Carolyn Hurst, Jennifer Vollner, and Ashley Kendell. 2012. In Poor Families, Mothers' Milk is Richer for Daughters than Sons: A Test of Trivers-Willard Hypothesis in Agropastoral Settlements in Northern Kenya. American Journal of Physical Anthropology 149(1):52-59.
Wikberg, Eva Carolina, U. of Calgary, Calgary, Canada - To aid research on 'Facultative Female Dispersal in Female Colobus vellerosus and Other Primates,' supervised by Dr. Pascale Sicotte
EVA C. WIKBERG, then a student at the University of Calgary, Calgary, Canada, received funding in May 2010 to aid research on 'Facultative Female Dispersal in Female Colobus vellerosus and Other Primates,' supervised by Dr. Pascale Sicotte. An increasing body of evidence suggests that there is significant within-population variation in dispersal, both in human and non-human primate societies. The aim of this study is to investigate dispersal in a population of black-and-white colobus (Colobus vellerosus) residing at Boabeng-Fiema, Ghana. Based on a combination of demographic and genetic data, approximately half of the females in this population were immigrant females while the other half resided in their natal group. Regardless of the group composition of immigrant and natal females, all groups showed strong female-female bonds. Females formed stronger grooming relationships with familiar female kin, and these females showed co-participation in between-group encounters more often. As females defend the core area of their home range during between-group encounters, strong grooming relationships may facilitate cooperative home range defense. Despite these possible benefits of remaining with familiar kin, many females left large groups residing in areas with high local population density. These females may have dispersed to reduce feeding competition. These findings indicate that a combination of costs and benefits associated with dispersal shape individual female's dispersal decisions. This observed variation cannot be explained by the traditional models of social structure, and future models will need to address this plasticity.
Kortright, Christopher Michael, U. of California, Davis, CA - To aid research on 'Experimental Fields and Biotech Futures: The Politics and Histories of Scientific Rice Research,' supervised by Dr. Joseph Dumit
CHRISTOPHER M. KORTRIGHT, then a student at University of California, Davis, California, was awarded a grant in April 2009 to aid research on 'Experimental Fields and Biotech Futures: The Politics and Histories of Scientific Rice Research,' supervised by Dr. Joseph Dumit. Through ethnographic fieldwork at the International Rice Research Institute (IRRI), this research focuses on how scientific research on rice has been motivated by scientists' assumptions about population growth and consumption, and how these motivations have changed with the advent of genetically modified (GM) rice. This research illustrates the ways in which experimental practices are shaped by scientists' 'visions of the future'-specifically overpopulation and agricultural underproduction. These future visions are historically located within the political economy and agricultural science. This research is a product of the archival collection of oral histories and scientific papers of researchers working on rice research and the production of 'new plant types' at IRRI. Alongside these oral histories, research focused on the study of one specific GM rice project called C4 Rice. The ethnographic research on the C4 Rice Project was conducted both in the laboratory and the experimental fields at IRRI while two large-scale experiments were under way, and the ethnographer accompanied C4 Rice researchers to scientific conferences, funding meetings, and presentations introducing GM science to the general public. Tracing out this specific scientific network of GM rice researchers, this project sheds light on an international science collaboration as it is manifested and articulated at a historically and politically controversial research locality. This research adds to the anthropological literatures on agriculture, science, political economy and futures. Alongside these contributions to the anthropological literature, this research opens up larger discourses on food and food security, specifically in the domain of genetically modified crops.
Kortright, Chris. 2013. On Labor and Creative Transformations in the Experimental Fields of the Philippines. East Asian Science, Technology and Society: An International Journal 7(4):557-578.
Ambikaipaker, Mohan, U. of Texas, Austin, TX - To aid research on 'Antiracist Activism and the Decline of Multiculturalism in East London,' supervised by Dr. Joao Costa Vargas
MOHAN AMBIKAIPAKER, then a student at University of Texas, Austin, Texas, received funding in October 2006 to aid research on 'Anti-racist Activism and the Decline of Multiculturalism in East London,' supervised by Dr. João Costa Vargas. Funding enabled extensive ethnographic research to be carried out on how Black and South Asian communities in East London struggle against different but interrelated forms of racism. The British state has consolidated a shift from the earlier anti-racist and anti-discriminatory objectives of multiculturalism by reformulating contemporary multicultural policy and practices as tools to ensure national security instead. The official focus has shifted the spotlight towards British Muslims, who are constructed as the likely and potential source of cultural clashes, religious extremism, and domestic terrorism. Anti-terror and national security policies and practices are generated through an emergent common sense that shifts the meaning of official multiculturalism away the struggle to accord recognition and rights for minorities and steers it towards a repressive notion of multiculturalism aimed at regulating ethnic identities in compliance primarily with counter-terrorism's logic. This change in multiculturalism forces the development of new forms of anti-racist social movements that have to negotiate a range of identities produced by defensive racial and ethnic responses to the new multicultural regime. There is a conceptual space for these movements that mediate between abstract universal goals of social justice and the necessarily defensive postures of identities subject to the processes of racialization and social exclusion engendered by repressive multiculturalism. The research findings argue against any form of settled position concerning the debate on the effectiveness of identity politics, preferring instead an ethnographic presentation that examines how an ideologically ambiguous terrain accomplishes much of the everyday work of antiracism in Britain.