Mika, Marissa Anne, U. of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, PA - To aid research on 'Experimental Infrastructures: Building Cancer Research in Uganda from 1950 to the Present,' supervised by Dr. Steven Feierman
MARISSA A. MIKA, then a graduate student at University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, received a grant in October 2012 to aid research on 'Experimental Infrastructures: Building Cancer Research in Uganda from 1950 to the Present,' supervised by Dr. Steven Feierman. This multi-sited ethnographic project examined the ways in which a new set of research initiatives on HIV-related malignancies are reshaping the landscape of oncology services at the Uganda Cancer Institute. The Institute, a historic site of cancer research and care established in the 1960s, is undergoing rapid changes as it shifts from being 'the place where you were sent to die' to a site of international research excellence. The research phase receiving support examined the ways in which a partnership between a cancer research organization in the United States and the Uganda Cancer Institute is dramatically reshaping the built infrastructure of care and research services. Focusing on the story of two buildings, the project examined the ways in which new facilities and partnerships are displacing and reshaping long established oncology practices that were fundamentally shaped by Uganda's history of crisis, namely civil war and the AIDS epidemic. The project explored the way partners understand the ethics of collaboration, the minutiae of constructing facilities despite vast distances, and the challenges of tearing down old, long established sites in the name of progress. This project examined the political stakes of oncology in the Global South.
Cho, Mun Young, Stanford U., Stanford, CA - To aid research on 'When Does Poverty Matter? Managing Differential Impoverishments in the People's Republic of China,' supervised by Dr. James Ferguson
MUN YOUNG CHO, then a student at Stanford University was awarded funding in May 2006 to aid research on 'When Does Poverty Matter? Managing Differential Impoverishments in the People's Republic of China,' supervised by Dr. James Ferguson. Dissertation fieldwork, conducted at one-time workers' village in Harbin, northeast China, from August 2006 to July 2007, explored processes of differential impoverishment under China's late socialism and examined how they are managed in the state's projects of governing urban poverty. Research sought, firstly, to examine how both urban laid-off workers and rural migrants of the same area experience and respond to their changing economic fortunes and sociocultural positions by forging new relationships with each other as well as to the state; secondly, to explore how poverty-related state agents have constituted and contested the state's multiple ideological frameworks when they attempt to regulate urban poverty. Ethnographic data suggest that urban laid-off workers and rural migrants formulate common identities through recent processes in which they not only experience spatial segregation and marginalization all together but also reappropriate the state's paternalistic claims for the urban poor to their own needs and understandings. Nevertheless, data also reveal that both groups pursue distinct trajectories rather than forming a unitary bloc owing to state governing techniques that differentiate them as well as to disparate institutional and sociocultural positions that each group has had to the socialist regime. Research demonstrates that 'the poor' in urban China remains not a political class but a governmental and scholarly language for normalizing people who do not consider themselves a collective 'poor.'
Cho, Mun Young Cho. 2012. 'Dividing the Poor': State Governance of Differential Impoverishment in Northeast China. American Ethnologist 39(1):187-200.
Scaffaldi, Cassandra K., Vanderbilt U., Nashville, TN - To aid research on 'Networks of Violence: Bioarchaeology of Structural Violence and Imperial Articulation in Middle Horizon Arequipa, Peru,' supervised by Dr. Tiffiny Tung
Preliminary abstract: Imperial expansion often engenders and enables sweeping changes in the social structures and practices of communities in the imperial margins. Imperially-catalyzed changes in class hierarchies become institutionalized through local and imperial practices that structure and maintain inequalities in social status, health, and nutritional access (collectively referred to a structural violence). Because childhood health and development impacts adult health, structural inequalities are often maintained throughout life and reproduced in future generations. To clarify the biocultural effects of Wari imperial expansion (AD 600-1000) in its southern hinterland (modern day Department of Arequipa), this project will document bioarchaeological indicators of malnutrition and systemic physiological stress (hyperostoses, enamel defects, and hair cortisol levels), dietary breadth (from dietary reconstruction based on the analysis of stable carbon and nitrogen isotopes from bone/ enamel pairs and human hair), and traumatic injury in skeletons from three archaeological sites that were differentially articulated with the Wari Empire. Intra and inter-site comparisons of these bioarchaeological indicators of structural and violence will this enable this study to test whether greater articulation with the Wari Empire at the more-integrated site of Quillcapampa (Siguas Valley) led to greater class-based disparities in health, nutrition, and violence there than at the less-integrated sites of Uraca and Huacapuy (Majes and Camaná Valleys). Finally, comparisons of early and late-life physiological health and dietary breadth will demonstrate whether health and nutrition status was maintained throughout the life course, suggesting social institutionalization of health disparities.
Hammond, Ashley Suzanne, U. of Missouri, Columbia, MO - To aid research on 'Fossil Evidence for Hip Joint Mobility and the Evolution of Suspensory Locomotor Abilities in Hominoids,' supervised by Dr. Carol V. Ward
ASHLEY S. HAMMOND, then a graduate student at University of Missouri, Columbia, Missouri, was awarded a grant in October 2012 to aid research on 'Fossil Evidence for Hip Joint Mobility and the Evolution of Suspensory Locomotor Abilities in Hominoids,' supervised by Dr. Carol V. Ward. Suspensory behaviors are thought to be key locomotor behaviors to understanding extant great ape morphology, and figure into most scenarios of great ape and human evolution. It is assumed that suspensory behaviors are associated with increased ranges of joint mobility, particularly range of abduction at the hip joint, although there are no empirical data on hip mobility available. This project tested the hypothesis that suspensory primates have an increased range of motion at the hip joint compared to non-suspensory anthropoids in anesthetized animals (in vivo), and investigated the utility of modeling joint mobility digitally for application to fossil hominoids. The study found support for the hypothesis that suspensory primates have significantly increased range of hip abduction. Simulations of hip abduction revealed that there is also a consistent relationship between the digital approach and range of abduction measured in vivo, providing a framework for interpreting fossil hominoids. Range of abduction was then simulated in fossil hominoids Proconsul nyanzae, hypothesized to be an above-branch quadruped, and Rudapithecus hungaricus, which is hypothesized to be suspensory. As expected, this study found that Rudapithecus would have had hip mobility similar to suspensory taxa whereas Proconsul had more limited hip mobility. This project provides the first evidence for suspensory behavior in a fossil ape based on hindlimb joint mobility.
Hammond, Ashley S. 2014. In Vivo Baseline Measurements of Hip Joint Range of Motion in Suspensory and Nonsuspensory Anthropoids. American Journal of Physical Anthropology 153(3):417-434
Hammond, Ashley S., J. Michael Plavcan, and Carol V. Ward. 2013. Precision and Accuracy of Acetabular Size Measures in Fragmentary Hominin Pelves Obtained Using Sphere-Fitting Techniques. American Journal of Physical Anthropology 150(4):565-578.
Zuckerman, Charles Henry Pearson, U. of Michigan, Ann Arbor, MI - To aid research on 'The Ethics of Exchange: Gambling and Interaction in Luang Prabang, Laos,' supervised by Dr. Michael Lempert
Preliminary abstract: Over the past twenty years, Luang Prabang (LPB), the once royal capital of Laos, has shifted from sleepy socialist hamlet to global tourist destination. The city's inhabitants have reacted to the influx of money and new forms of exchange with a mixture of desire and moral trepidation. My research studies how actors in LPB morally evaluate these new forms of exchange during face-to-face interaction. In 12 months of research, I will primarily investigate two forms of exchange--gambling for beer and gambling for money--as they occur in the popular game pétanque, which resembles bocce. Pétanque began to soar in popularity in LPB in the late 1990s and continues to grow as the Lao socialist state lifts many of its restrictions on gathering and gambling and embraces market capitalism, foreign investment, and tourism. Many people explicitly associate beer-gambling with the state, civil servants, and a distinctively 'Lao' and 'good' way of sharing. Conversely, they associate money-gambling with workers in the tourist sector and an increasingly common 'foreign' and 'immoral' way of consuming. I have chosen to study pétanque gambling because of its popularity, because of its morally fraught status, and because debates concerning the morality of the two forms of gambling appear to crystalize debates concerning new ways of making and spending money in LPB more generally. I am studying these exchanges with methods for studying face-to-face interaction because I predict that an attention to ordinary interaction will reveal the multiple modalities and methods through which exchanges become moral practices in the first place. More broadly, I anticipate that such an approach will shed light on the ethical domain itself.
Mahadev, Neena, Johns Hopkins U., Baltimore, MD - To aid research on 'Buddhist and Christian Ethical Endeavors: Charitable Works, Conversions, and Unstable Religious Commitments in Post-Tsunami Sri Lanka,' supervised by Dr. Veena Das
NEENA MAHADEV, then a student at Johns Hopkins University, Baltimore, Maryland, was awarded funding in October 2008, to aid research on 'Buddhist and Christian Ethical Endeavors: Charitable Works, Conversions, and Unstable Religious Commitments in Post-Tsunami Sri Lanka,' supervised by Dr. Veena Das. The rise in global Pentecostal Christianity has begun to affect Sri Lanka over recent decades, inciting Buddhist nationalists to revive their efforts to protect against the possibility that Christianity will supplant Buddhism as the majority religion of the country. This research attended to the discourses and practices involved in protecting Theravada Buddhism, as well as to new practices of evangelism and charismatic Christianity in Sri Lanka. The fieldwork considered sub/urban religious landscapes where conversions to charismatic Christianity have been relatively concentrated within certain socioeconomic demographic groups, in contrast to predominantly Buddhist tsunami-affected areas where conversions have been gradual, limited, and dispersed across southern districts. In the crosscut between Buddhist nationalism and Pentecostal evangelism in Sri Lanka, this project took up the following ethnographic tasks: 1) to study the events that have caused a resurgence of exclusivist religious doctrines and practices, exacerbating Buddhist-Christian discord in Sri Lanka; 2) to study the impacts of heightened tensions on Buddhist and Christian institutions and individuals; 3) to gain knowledge about the workings of both harmonious and discordant inter-religious relationships; and 4) to understand how experiences of belonging within families and within village communities did or did not match ideologies of exclusivity promoted by religious authorities.
Brown, Laura C., U. of Michigan, Ann Arbor, MI - To aid research on 'Tipping Scales with Tongues: Language Use in Thanjavur's Petty Shops,' supervised by Judith T. Irvine
LAURA C. BROWN, then a student at University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, Michigan, received funding in April 2005 to aid research on 'Tipping Scales with Tongues: Language Use in Thanjavur's Petty Shops,' supervised by Dr. Judith T. Irvine. Roadsides in India bloom with small grocery shops, mali kada, where goods, advertisements, and news from distant locations mix with products and persons who spend most of their time within a single neighborhood. Because they are primary sites for household consumption and expenditure, meetings between friends and interactions between neighbors who are unlikely to speak in other settings, these shops are critical sites for the enactment and negotiation of multiple kinds of affiliation, obligation, and trust. Focusing on conversations in and around three such shops in Thanjavur, India this project explores the ways in which communication about different forms of debt and obligation -- in cash, kind, action, and affection -- relates to ideas about the correctness, economic value, and morality of Tamil language use. Recordings of conversations in shops, examinations of account books, interviews with product suppliers, and explicit discussions of ways of speaking suggest that people doing business in such shops often stress the quantity and regularity of talk, as opposed to its form or content, as critical to the maintenance of relationships
Rice, Kathleen Frieda, U. of Toronto, Toronto, Canada - To aid research on 'Purity, Propriety and Power: Negotiating Lobola and Virginity Testing as Sites of Gendered and Generational Power among Xhosa South Africans,' supervised by Dr. Janice Boddy
KATHLEEN F. RICE, then a student at University of Toronto, Toronto, Canada, was awarded a grant in April 2011 to aid research on 'Purity, Propriety, and Power: Negotiating Lobola and Virginity Testing as Sites of Gendered and Generational Power among Xhosa South Africans,' supervised by Dr. Janice Boddy. This project draws on sixteen months of ethnographic fieldwork conducted in a rural Bomvana community in the Eastern Cape Province, South Africa. The research addresses the following question: In the community under study, what cultural institutions are mobilized to reinforce and/or contest moral discourses and values relating to kinship, sexuality, and reproduction, and how is this accomplished? Particularly, this research examines embodied and/or symbolic forms of moral discourse, and to how these discourses spark anxieties and contests at the fault-lines of gender and generational power. Through focusing on issues such as bridewealth, abduction marriage, sexuality, and patterns of alcohol consumption, this research shows that significant intergenerational and intergendered anxieties are sustained, negotiated, and produced through contests over the meaning and value of human rights, gender equality, and access to money. These intergenerational and intergendered tensions are rendered especially acute due to the double burden of poor economic prospects alongside the HIV/AIDS epidemic.
Girard- Buttoz, Cedric, German Primate Centre, Goettingen, Germany - To aid research on 'Costs of Mate-Guarding in Wild Long-Tailed Macaques (Macaca fascicularis),' supervised by Dr. Antje Engelhardt
CEDRIC GIRARD-BUTTOZ, then a student at the German Primate Centre, Goettingen, Germany, was awarded a grant in October 2008 to aid research on 'Costs of Mate-Guarding in Wild Tong-Tailed Macaques (Macaca fascicularis),' supervised by Dr. Antje Engelhardt. Little is known so far about how primate males cope with the costs arising from mate-guarding females in multi-male groups. The aim of the project therefore was to quantify these costs using long-tailed macaques as a model species. The study was carried out during two reproductive seasons on three groups living in the Gunung Leuser National Park, Indonesia. Research combined behavioral observations and non-invasive measurements of c-peptides as an indicator of male energetic status. Results indicate that males counterbalance reduced energy intake deriving from decreased feeding time and fruit consumption by decreasing their vertical locomotion and thus energy expenditure. Accordingly, no effect of mate-guarding on energetic status was found in the males studied. Results thus far are surprising in that they show alpha male long-tailed macaques do not monopolize all available females even when it may be possible. One explanation may be that results include rare empirical evidence of the concession model in primates. The constraints shaping the evolution of male reproductive strategy in primates might strongly differ between non-strictly seasonal species (such as long-tailed macaques) and strictly seasonal species and further studies on both ends of the spectrum are needed.