Sawyer, Kelley Paulette, U. of New Mexico, Albuquerque, NM - To aid research on 'Philadelphia's Story: Gay Tourism and Shifting Citizenry in the Nation's 'Freedom Capital',' supervised by Dr. Louise Lamphere
KELLEY SAWYER, then a student at the University of New Mexico, Albuquerque, New Mexico, received a grant in October 2010 to aid research on 'Philadelphia's Story: Gay Tourism and Shifting Citizenry in the Nation's 'Freedom Capital,'' supervised by Dr. Louise Lamphere. Research focused on the implications of Philadelphia's state-supported gay tourism marketing campaign, 'Get Your History Straight and Your Nightlife Gay,' with respect to residents' and visitors' impressions of the city and their experiences of inclusion within its Gayborhood. Research findings indicate that the gay tourism campaign functioned not simply as an invitation for lesbian and gay travelers to visit Philadelphia and spend their money; it inadvertently marked the city and its 'Gayborhood' as safe and welcoming for an influx of moneyed, white, straight residents. More broadly, the campaign worked in concert with the city's millennial gentrification and with national LGBT political gains to 'contemporize' and whiten the city through the thematics of history and diversity.
Hendy, Katherine Marie, U. of California, Berkeley, CA - To aid research on 'Drugs on Trial: Science, Bureaucracy and Activism in Clinical Trial Research with Psychedelic Drugs,' supervised by Dr. Corinne Hayden
KATHERINE HENDY, then a student at the University of California, Berkeley, California, was awarded funding in November 2010 to aid research on 'Drugs on Trial: Science, Bureaucracy and Activism in Clinical Trial Research with Psychedelic Drugs,' supervised by Dr. Corinne Hayden. The grantee undertook research with Northern California drug activists and researchers who have been working to legalize psychedelic drugs for use in psychotherapeutic settings. In contrast to other legalization efforts that have focused on state-based legislation or civil rights lawsuits, this movement organizes and funds clinical trials, which study the therapeutic benefits of psychedelics as a gateway to federal legalization as prescription pharmaceuticals. The research ethnographically tracked how the aspirations for the legalization of psychedelics combined with the on-the-ground practice of clinical trial research. The dissertation explores how the concerns of various regulatory agencies with issues of safety and drug diversion shape the form and practice of clinical trial research and consequently the kinds of pharmaceutical knowledge that emerge therefrom. Given that clinical trials are used to produce scientific research and to regulate the pharmaceutical industry, this dissertation will argue that they provide an important point of entry into the contemporary relationship between science and politics in the United States.
Yu, Xiao J., York U., Toronto, ON, Canada - To aid research on 'The Ethnic Law and the Making of Ethnic Identities in China,' supervised by Dr. Susan G. Drummond
XIAO YU, then a student at York University, Toronto, Canada, received funding in June 2005 to aid research on 'The Ethnic Law and the Making of Ethnic Identities in China,' supervised by Dr. Susan G. Drummond. This research contributes a legal ethnography of the social life of China's minzu law, with a focus on its role in identity making. Based on the fieldwork in Xiangxi, a multi-ethnic hinterland of South-central China, it provides a remedy to contemporary writings of China's ethnicities that pay little heed to the role of the minzu law in ethnicities. It also challenges the legal Orientalist discourse that simplistically depicts the Chinese minzu law as imposed by the State as a sham or merely 'law on paper' that is too impotent to have any power. The dissertation demonstrates that legibility and balancing act as teleologies were consistently invoked in the minzu law applications, while two strategies -- ethnicization of the regional, and regionalization of the ethnic -- were constantly embedded in the processes of negotiating identities. To the extent that local ethnoscape and ethnic identities were profoundly transformed by the law's applications in Xiangxi and elsewhere in China, it argues that such a seemingly impotent law has in fact made undeniable important socio-legal deeds, which in turn has made the law itself into a self-referencing, autopoietic legal subsystem that mandates to standardize the country's ethnicities and to perpetuate its legally sanctioned ethnic identities.
Mateescu, Oana M., U. of Michigan, Ann Arbor, MI - To aid research on 'Memory, Proof, and Persuasion: Re-Creating Communal Ownership in Postsocialist Romania,' supervised by Dr. Katherine Verdery
OANA M. MATEESCU, then a student at University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, Michigan, was awarded a grant in May 2005 to aid research on 'Memory, Proof, and Persuasion: Re-Creating Communal Ownership in Postsocialist Romania,' supervised by Dr. Katherine Verdery. Through archival research, interviews, and participant observation, this project studied four key historical events for the repertoire of knowledge practices they provide to current villagers of Vrancea region (Romania) involved in the reconstitution of communal ownership over forests. These are the successful reclaiming of forests in an 1816 lawsuit, the 1910 organization of forests according to the Forestry Code, the emergence of anthropology as a discipline in Romania through the study of Vrancea's communal ownership in the late 1920's and the failed uprising of hundreds of villagers upon the nationalization of forests in 1950. These events shape disputes over the present meaning of communal ownership and they inform the particular forms of claim making (lawsuits, complaints, humble appeals, the accumulation of evidence, and insurgency) villagers have at their disposal. Last, but not least, they serve as unique confirmations of the possibility for critique and effective intervention. Since 1816, proof-oriented actions such as the quest for documents, their secret keeping, forgery, loss, sale or destruction become inseparable from what it means to own the forests in Vrancea. The complex histories of such evidentiary objects as they shape ownership conflicts throughout the 20th century and come to haunt the current desires and strategies of villagers are central to this inquiry into the problematic of ownership, time, evidence and credibility.
Rinck, Jacob Emanuel, Yale U., New Haven, CT - To aid research on 'Political Competition in Nepal's Tarai: Between Regionalism, Labor Migration, and Patronage,' supervised by Dr. Kalyanakrishnan Sivaramakrishnan
Preliminary abstract: How does patronage-based politics operate in 21st century state formation? This study of everyday politics in southern Nepal asks how patronage as cultural form is refashioned in its engagement with changing economic opportunities, even as renewed development efforts preach its end. Remittances from short-term labor migration to Malaysia and the Gulf now account for close to a third of Nepal's GDP. Most of the migrants are from rural backgrounds, where until recently unequal agrarian relations and elite control over developmental resources formed the basis for political authority, even after Nepal's democratic transition in 1990. How do the new flows of money change the ways in which people imagine and engage these modes of politics, and how do political elites respond? This project uses the competition between established political elites and their lower class, lower-caste challengers as empirical ground for pursuing this question. During 18 months of multi-sited ethnographic research between Kathmandu and a district in the southern plains, I will trace how national level politicians, their constituents, and other political actors, including aid donors and development projects, connect through their historically informed aspirations and everyday politics. Thus, my study foregrounds intertwined processes of contesting meanings and making alliances within, across, and against formal state institutions. Through this anthropology of politics, it clarifies the relationship between everyday politics, contending modernities, and the imagination of material resources, and conceptualizes state formation as continuous process of mutual disruptions.
Guney, Murat Kazim, Columbia U., New York, NY - To aid research on 'In the Intersection of Neo-Liberal Market and Islamic Government: The Internally Displaced Kurds of Turkey,' supervised by Dr. Elizabeth A. Povinelli
MURAT KASIM GUNEY, then a student at Columbia University, New York, New York, received funding in May 2010, to aid research on 'In the Intersection of Neo-Liberal Market and Islamic Government: The Internally Displaced Kurds of Turkey,' supervised by Dr. Elizabeth A. Povinelli. This project examines the side effects of the neoliberal development and fast economic growth in Turkey on the everyday life of the Turkish and Kurdish internal migrants and working classes. The ethnographic site of the study is the Tuzla Shipyards Zone of Istanbul, the major ship production site of Turkey that is inhabited by the internal migrants from rural regions of Turkey. In Tuzla, the migrant laborers work for subcontractor firms in temporary jobs without having social security, payment guarantee, and required equipment for work safety. Consequently, since 1992 in Tuzla shipyards 143 workers died because of 'accidents' at work. Tuzla is a salient example about the mode of the economic development in Turkey. Turkey has neither a significant investment in technological research and development nor a company with a high brand-value. Instead, in order to compete with other developing countries Turkey's only offer is the cheap labor force. That is to say, the economic growth in Turkey is sustained through the presence of the cheap labor that requires persistent government oppression over the working classes. Under these severe conditions this research asks: 'What are the mechanisms that reproduce exploitation of the shipyard workers' bodies and labor and endure their sufferings?'
Watson, Margaret Kathleen, U. of New Mexico, Albuquerque, NM - To aid research on 'From Rural Street Theater to Big City Extravaganza: The Manaus Boi-Bumba in an Urbanizing Brazil,' supervised by Dr. Suzanne Oakdale
MARGARET K. WATSON, then a student at University of New Mexico, Albuquerque, New Mexico, received funding in October 2010 to aid research on 'From Rural Street Theater to Big City Extravaganza: The Manaus Boi-bumbá in an Urbanizing Brazil,' supervised by Dr. Suzanne Oakdale. This study focused on the Boi-bumbá festival of Manaus, capital of the Brazilian state of Amazonas. Over the last few decades the Boi-bumbá, which tells the folkloric story of the death and resurrection of a rancher's favorite bull, has grown from a humble street drama associated with the rural poor into a highly mediated, government-sponsored, urban extravaganza in which teams battle to present the best version of the drama. Through life historical interviews with festival participants, musicians, artists, neighborhood politicians, and city tourism officials, this research investigated the meaning of Boi-Bumbá festivals to participants in the neighborhood of Educandos, where increasingly individuals self-identify as Caboclos. This research showed that the Boi-bumbá serves as a core of neighborhood sociality, providing a safe space for otherwise marginalized individuals, including older women, at-risk youth, and transvestites. Additionally, the festival functions as a realm for local musicians and artists to professionalize. Finally, the Boi-bumbá, the 'Caboclo opera,' is being implemented as a branding device for cities throughout Brazilian Amazônia. In short, the Boi-bumbá of Educandos is an emblem of Caboclo pride for participants. This, however, is part of a regional process of image creation aimed at distinguishing Amazônia from the rest of Brazil.
Lin, Emily Xi, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Cambridge, MA - To aid research on 'Disability's Star-Children: Autism and the Remaking of Urban China's Moral Order,' supervised by Dr. Stefan Helmreich
EMILY XI LIN, then a graduate student at Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Cambridge, Massachusetts, was awarded a grant in April 2013 to aid research on 'Disability's Star-Children: Autism and the Remaking of Urban China's Moral Order,' supervised by Dr. Stefan Helmreich. This research contributes a multi-sited ethnography of the social life of autism as a psychiatric category in contemporary China. Based on multi-sited ethnography in homes, clinics, autism rehabilitation centers, and philanthropic organizations, the project pays attention to the social meanings and practices of autism caregiving in contemporary China amidst social, educational, and urban-rural healthcare disparities. It is argued that autism illuminates moral crises in three domains: parent-child relations, rural-urban healthcare disparities, and citizens' disquiet with Chinese society's apparent lack of humanity. This thesis investigates how citizens themselves perceive deficiencies in Chinese morality, civility, and scientific literacy, and how these deficiencies are thrown into relief by the needs of autistic persons. While China's biomedical institutions and humanitarian organizations foster novel autism parental practices and ethics in the name of true parental love and scientific modernity, the grantee argues that these efforts shift the burden of care of autistic persons from the state to families, thus increasing the burden of care on rural families in China. In paying attention to how disabled citizens are nurtured or neglected due to choices made by 'good' or 'selfish' parents, findings demonstrate how moral categories are key to post-socialist governmentality-the art, techniques, and practices of governance-in China.