Prasad, Srirupa, U. of Illinois, Urbana, IL - To aid research on 'Gender Construction at Crossroads of Colonialism, Nationalism and Health: A Case Study of Colonial Bengal,' supervised by Dr. Winifred R. Poster
SRIRUPA PRASAD, while a student at the University of Illinois in Urbana, Illinois, received funding in December 2001 to aid research on gender construction, colonialism, nationalism, and health in Bengal, India, under the supervision of Dr. Winifred R. Poster. Prasad looked at the history and trajectory of medical practice in late colonial Bengal (1885-1935), addressing the absence of the home or household in the literature on the history of medicine in India and arguing that the household was a critical unit of analysis for understanding the history of medical practices in modern societies. In colonial India, ideas about disease, good health, sanitation, diet, cleanliness, and therapeutics were important means through which bodies were controlled and disciplined. They were a part of the nationalist discourse, too, behind which lay a zeal to regenerate the nation through healthy bodies and healthy minds that gave rise to a complex politics between Western and existing traditions of knowledge. Everyday prescriptions for health were also implicated in the construction of gender. Culturally nuanced and traditionally Indian notions of health, disease, and therapeutics played a crucial role in the techniques of bodily discipline, making disciplinary regimes in India different from those in the West at the same time. Prasad found that domesticity and the Indian household were indispensable for understanding anticolonial political nationalism in India and argued that the domain of the political should be extended to include the social forms of bodily disciplining that took place in the private domains of Hindu Bengali society.
Ferraro, Joseph, U. of California, Los Angeles, CA - To aid research on 'The Late Pliocene Zooarchaeology of Kanjera South, Southwestern Kenya,' supervised by Dr. Thomas W. Plummer
JOSEPH FERRARO, while a student at the University of California in Los Angeles, California, received funding in February 2002 to aid research on the late Pliocene zooarchaeology of Kanjera South, southwestern Kenya, under the supervision of Dr. Thomas W. Plummer. A consideration of sampling biases (spatial, temporal, ecological, and numeric) suggested that in the past, researchers likely underestimated the behavioral variability expressed by Oldowan hominins. To assess the full range of Oldowan hominin behaviors requires the comparative analysis of a number of excavated Oldowan assemblages distributed across time and space, representing a wide range of ecological conditions and possessing well-preserved faunas. The late Pliocene locality of Kanjera South contributes toward meeting this requirement. Its assemblages represent the only sizable, well-preserved Oldowan faunas so far recovered outside of Olduvai Gorge, and preliminary geochemical and paleontological analyses strongly suggest that the assemblages formed in an open grassland, a habitat distinct from those of other Oldowan occurrences. Ferraro conducted a zooarchaeological study of the excavated vertebrate fauna of Kanjera South, focusing especially on issues of predation pressures and foraging ecologies. His preliminary results strongly suggested that Oldowan hominins at Kanjera behaved in a way dissimilar to that frequently reported at the penecontemporaneous Oldowan locality of FLK Zinj in Olduvai Gorge.
Walker, Alexis Kalilah, Cornell U., Ithaca, NY - To aid research on 'After Privatization: Economic Sciences, Development Banks, and Global Health in Guyana,' supervised by Dr. Saida Hodzic
Preliminary abstract: Development banks had almost no involvement in the field of international health just a few decades ago, but today they wield immense power over the lives of millions of people by shaping global health priorities and implementing health programs. In the context of neoliberal governance, 'innovative finance,' and the shift from international to global health, key actors and approaches in this field have shifted, and what counts as relevant expertise in global health has also been called into question. The proposed research examines relationships of power and knowledge in the health work of development banks--examining what comes to count as relevant knowledge, who gets to use it, and with what social and political consequences. It does so by bringing together ethnographic research of two development bank-coordinated projects in Guyana with interview and archival research at the headquarters of the banks that finance and oversee these projects: the Inter-American Development Bank and the World Bank. This research investigates the construction of authority across networks of sites and people involved in the health work of development banks. The focus of the proposed study is to examine how actors use knowledge and methods from economics and finance in bank health work, and whether other forms of expertise--such as clinical experience or expertise in local health systems--are being sidelined in the process. In doing so, I am examining relationships among knowledge and the power to govern health amidst contemporary configurations of global health and neoliberal governance.
Keimig, Rose Kay, Yale U., New Haven, CT - To aid research on 'Growing Old in China's New Nursing Homes,' supervised by Dr. Marcia Inhorn
Preliminary abstract: How do elders, families, and caregivers negotiate new forms of institutionalized eldercare in contemporary China? The one-child policy of the late 1970s has given rise to stark demographic imbalances today, and has stimulated an increase in demand for residential care facilities. The proposed project is one of the first to ethnographically explore how experiences with elderly institutionalization in China are mediated by pluralistic medical systems, changing moral worlds, and shifting demographics. The proposed research will be conducted in Kunming, the capital of Yunnan province in southwestern China. Using a combination of participant observation and interviews with staff, residents, and families of institutionalized and non-institutionalized elders, this study aims to show how people are grappling with the everyday challenges of new forms of eldercare. The wide range of research methods and informants will provide a rich account of how the broader themes of biomedicalization, kinship, and urbanization map onto the aging experience in contemporary China. By showing how aging is experienced, caregiving decisions are made, and family responsibilities are reworked in institutional settings, this research seeks to illuminate areas for policy interventions that will make the demographic transition easier for future caregivers, elders, and families in China and around the globe.
Ozcan, Omer, U. of Texas, Austin, TX - To aid research on 'Waiting in the Kurdish Bordertown of Yuksekova,' supervised by Dr. Kamran Asdar Ali
Preliminary abstract: In the Kurdish bordertown of Yuksekova, waiting is a way of life. Located at the juncture of the borders of Iran, Iraq and Turkey, Yuksekova has been a significant center of the ongoing armed conflict between the Turkish army and Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK) since the mid-1980s. In this bordertown, waiting takes on the weight of history and the embodied process of living shot through with trauma, forced displacement, chronic unemployment and poverty. This project explores how chronic waiting permeates the sensibilities of everyday life and shapes local conceptualizations of hope and resignation. Situated in the anthropological studies of time, everyday life and hope, this project proposes to study waiting at two analytically related levels: (a) the ways in which waiting practices mediate historical and social change into the arrangement and rhythm of everyday life; and, more importantly, (b) how this influences the imaginations of the future and conceptualizations of hope and resignation. Employing methodological tools of archival research, participant observation, life histories and interviews, this project analyzes historically conditioned and future-oriented aspects of ordinary waiting practices in Yuksekova.
Dennison, Jean, U. of Florida, Gainesville, FL - To aid research on 'Reforming a Nation: Citizenship, Government and the Osage People,' supervised by Dr. Peter R. Schmidt
JEAN DENNISON, then a student at the University of Florida, Gainesville, Florida, was awarded funding in November 2005, to aid research on ''Reforming a Nation: Citizenship, Government and the Osage People,' supervised by Dr. Peter R. Schmidt. This research examined the mapping of Osage identity within the context of their 2004-2006 citizenship and government reform process. It investigated three primary areas: first, how the colonial situation created certain limitations on and possibilities for Osage citizenship and governmental formation; second, the ways in which the desires surrounding 'Osageness' were created and changed through the reform process; and third, how the writers of the 2006 Osage Constitution navigated the conflicts arising from these histories and desires in order to create this governing document. In order to investigate these concerns a wide range of evidence was collected, including archival documents, interviews, recorded community and business meetings, and informal conversations. Using this evidence, this dissertation will investigate how colonial policies, local histories, authorized and unauthorized stories about the reform process, biological 'facts,' desires, fears and personal experiences were all hardened into the 2006 Osage constitution.
Taber, Peter Addison, U. of Arizona, Tucson, AZ - To aid research on 'Expertise and Sovereignty in Ecuadorian Biodiversity Conservation,' supervised by Dr. Brian Silverstein
Preliminary abstract: This project explores how an environmental non-governmental organization (NGO) and indigenous advocacy group enact distinct forms of expertise in the context of biodiversity conservation. While professionals in the NGO are formally trained scientists, those in the advocacy group work to integrate indigenous expertise into conservation projects in northwest Ecuador. By focusing on the details of interactions between individuals and institutions as they conduct conservation projects and respond to pressure from oil interests, this analysis will examine how both groups produce themselves as experts in contrast with one another while aligning their agendas. As conservation projects demand new types of knowledge from rural Chachi residents they are also likely to create new dynamics of political legitimation between indigenous bureaucrats, NGO experts, and community residents, as well as new senses of race that build on longstanding understandings of indigenous peoples as 'naturally' connected to the environment. The project will also examine the participation of communities in conservation projects through indigenous community assemblies and conservation fieldwork to gain insight into the interchange of discourses and practices between these institutions and the broader population. By examining the micro-scale interactions through which conservation projects take shape, this ethnographic study will help to elucidate the relationship between different forms of expertise, sovereignty in environmental matters, and emergent relations between indigenous peoples, NGOs and the state.
Hundle, Anneeth Kaur, U. of Michigan, Ann Arbor, MI - To aid research on 'Uganda's Asian Question: Violence, Gender, and Citizenship Struggles in Kampala,' supervised by Dr. Damani J. Partridge
ANNEETH KAUR HUNDLE, then a student at University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, Michigan, was awarded funding in May 2008, to aid research on 'Uganda's Asian Question: Violence, Gender, and Citizenship Struggles in Kampala,' supervised by Dr. Damani J. Partridge. Gender and domestic violence against Asian women in Uganda, when made visible and public, is linked to broader historical and contemporary debates and questions about the problems of citizenship for Asians in East Africa today. Ethnographic data has made it difficult to conclude that Afro-Asian gender politics are playing a significant role to establish citizenship for Asians in Uganda today. Nonetheless, publicized cases of violence against Asian women have created an opening for Ugandan African and Asian-Indian women to debate about the role of the new post-Expulsion migrant population of Asians to Uganda. They have also opened up additional questions for Ugandan Africans about social justice, who the Asians are, and why and how Asian migration is happening. The project has helped to determine that Asian migration has increased as: 1) formerly expelled Ugandan Asians from Western diaspora communities are invited to re-invest and re-claim their private property in Uganda; 2) Asian capitalists from India and China seek private investment opportunities or government contracts; 3) traders and other migrant Asians from South Asia decide to live in East Africa given the relatively open borders and government receptivity towards Asians; and 4 ) as migrants are recruited to work for larger scale companies in an environment of renewed capitalist activity. This new demography of Asians in Uganda requires a reassessment of the ways in which citizenship has been traditionally applied to and utilized for Asians.
Mosothwane, Morongwa N., U. of Witwatersrand, Johannesburg, South Africa - To aid research on 'Molecular Tracing of Early Farmers Diets in Eastern Botswana,' supervised by Dr. Karim Sadr & Dr. Judith C. Sealy
MORONGWA NANCY MOSOTHWANE, then a student at University of Witwatersrand, Johannesburg, South Africa, received funding in November 2005 to aid research on 'Molecular Tracing of Early Farmers Diets in Eastern Botswana,' supervised by Dr. Karim Sadr and Dr. Judith C. Sealy. The study was intended to identify farmers and foragers during the Early Iron Age (EIA) in Botswana through the use of stable isotope analysis. The areas were selected as they are known to have been frontiers of contact between foragers and farmers. The aim was to determine whether there were foragers buried on farmers' settlements or vise versa and to identify those individuals who had shifted from one of subsistance to the other over a long period. The human samples came from EIA settlements in the Toutswe area, Tsodilo Hills and Okavango River. Toutswe samples were derived from Kgaswe B55 (n=17), Bonwapitse (n=3), Taukome (n=5) and Thatswane (n=6), Bosutswe (n=13) and Toutswemogala (n=28) and others (n=4). At the Tsodilo Hills, two sites are Divuyu (n=1) and N!oma (n=3). Xaro (n=2), is along the Okavango River. Thus, 76 humans were selected for stable isotope analysis. Animal samples from archaeological and modern context were analysed to provide reference standards for the interpretation of human isotope values. They included domestic species like cattle, sheep/goats, and a dog as well as wild animals: zebra, hare, tortoise, and steenbok. According to results, EIA farmers in the Toutswe and the Tsodilo Hills areas relied on domestic C4 crops (sorghum and millet), which they supplemented with C3 plants. The C3 component was derived from a combination of domestic and wild plants. At N!oma the two individuals showed isotopic evidence for having been a foragers who later shifted to a farming mode of subsistence. It is possible that the Xaro individuals exploited freshwater fish from the nearby Okavango River but they were farmers.
Cho, Sumi, U. of Michigan, Ann Arbor, MI - To aid research on 'Multiculturalism, Okinawan Popular Culture and the Politics of Ethnicity in Osaka, Japan,' supervised by Dr. Jennifer E. Robertson
SUMI CHO, then a student at University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, Michigan, received funding in May 2007 to aid research on 'Multiculturalism, Okinawan Popular Culture, and the Politics of Ethnicity in Osaka, Japan,' supervised by Dr. Jennifer E. Robertson. The project explored how the recent Okinawa Boom and multiculturalist trend influenced the practices of Okinawan popular music and dance in mainland Japan. For decades, Okinawan music and dance were shunned in Osaka, performed only by Okinawans, and only in private to avoid ethnic stigmatization (except for a few instances of cultural resistance against the dominant ideology of Japanese ethnic and cultural homogeneity). Now Okinawan music and dance genres are becoming increasingly an object of cultural appropriation by Japanese -- to watch, listen to, learn, and perform themselves. While such popularity among Japanese is publicly regarded as a welcome sign of recognition of Okinawan culture, some perceive Japanese appropriation of Okinawan music and dance as another form of Japan's cultural domination -- a threat to the authenticity of Okinawan music and dance, and to authenticity of Okinawan identity itself. However, the divisions between seemingly opposite aspects of Okinawan popular culture are neither clear-cut in practice, nor do they necessarily follow the ethnic lines between participants. As individuals with diverse interests intermingled through Okinawan dance and music performances, they created complex consequences to notions and practices of Okinawan music and dance, and by extension, to attitudes towards the politics of ethnicity in Japan.