Harmansah, Rabia, U. of Pittsburgh, Pittsburgh, PA - To aid research on 'Social Forgetting in Post-Conflict Landscapes in Cyprus,' supervised by Dr. Robert M. Hayden
RABIA HARMANSAH, then a student at University of Pittsburgh, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, received a grant in April 2011 to aid research on 'Social Forgetting in Post-Conflict Landscapes in Cyprus,' supervised by Dr. Robert Hayden. The research investigated the practice of social forgetting by relating it to the selective construction of history and to the human interactions with the commemorative and religious landscape. Social forgetting was taken as practices of disremembering, misremembering, omitting, distorting, or silencing past events/experiences and their traces, in order to shape the collective memory. The research, conducted in Republic of Cyprus and Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus in 2011-12, entailed multi-sited ethnographic fieldwork, semi-structured and unstructured interviews with Greek/Turkish Cypriots and immigrant Turks, participant observation, archival research, and examination of patterns of transformations in built landscape. The research demonstrated that the local perceptions of the past have been shaped not simply by the official discourses, but by various complex cultural processes, personal experiences and active engagement of ordinary people with landscape in the process of memory and history. The research addressed theoretical and analytical issues of understanding social forgetting not only as a negation, neglect, failure of remembering, or unintended social amnesia, but as a positive process through which a certain kind of knowledge of the past is produced deliberately and actively by obscuring material evidence of what others wish to have remembered.
Rudan, Dr. Pavao, Institute for Anthropological Research, Zagreb, Croatia - To aid 13th congress of the European Anthropological Association (EAA): a quarter century of EA A - Reflections and Perspectives, 2002, Zagreb
'13th Congress of the European Anthropological Association (EAA): 'A Quarter Century of the European Anthropological Association - Reflections and Perspectives',' August 30-September 3, 2002, Zagreb, Croatia -- Organizers Dr. Pavao Rudan, Institute for Anthropological Research, Zagreb, Croatia. It was organized by Croatian Anthropological Society and Institute for Anthropological Research. Funding from Wenner-Gren Foundation made it possible for 48 students to attend the 13th EAA Congress, which consisted of six plenary sessions (30 lectures), thirteen symposia (172 presentations) and a poster session (234 posters) comprising a wide range of anthropological topics. Altogether 419 scientists from 36 European and overseas countries, including many students and young researchers, gathered to re-evaluate EAA past achievements and, more importantly, to specify its future goals. The emphasis was laid on the need to strengthen cooperation and to broaden the range of educational possibilities in anthropology in Europe.
Sabate, Dr. Irene, U. of Barcelona, Barcelona, Spain - To aid research on 'The Spanish Home Repossessions Crisis as a Case for the Study of Debt and Credit'
DR. IRENE SABATE, University of Barcelona, Barcelona, Spain, was awarded funding in April 2014 to aid research on 'The Spanish Home Repossessions Crisis as a Case for the Study of Debt and Credit.' The forced decision to stop repaying a mortgage-a milestone in defaulting debtors' narratives-is a difficult one due to the symbolic load of owner-occupied housing: a home, a spatial attachment, a source of material wellbeing, a guarantee for the future, a gift for the next generation. The moral strength of the obligation to repay debts further complicates this decision. Nevertheless, a certain sense of liberation can also be experienced, as households can now reconsider their priorities. Mortgage over-indebtedness was not only threatening them with homelessness, but it was also endangering the satisfaction of other urgent needs before an eviction date is set. Ethnographical data collected in the Barcelona area show that the decision to stop repaying a mortgage may be legitimized whenever it eases access to other basic resources such as food or children's education. The efforts made up to that moment in order to keep up with repayments may then be resignified as counterproductive for securing a livelihood. In addition, being in default provides debtors with some bargaining power in front of banks. This illustrates how commonly accepted moral judgements about lenders and borrowers, and about the practice of borrowing and lending, are challenged in the framework of the Spanish wave of home repossessions.
Bakker, Sarah Aaltje, U. of California, Santa Cruz, CA - To aid research on 'Ancient Moderns: Claiming Middle Eastern Christian Identity in the Netherlands,' supervised by Dr. Melissa L. Caldwell
SARAH AALTJE BAKKER, then a student at the University of California, Santa Cruz, California, received a grant in May 2009, to aid research on 'Ancient Moderns: Claiming Middle Eastern Christian Identity in the Netherlands,' supervised by Dr. Melissa L. Caldwell. This dissertation research examines debates among Syriac Orthodox Christians living in the Netherlands about how to be religiously, culturally, and ethnically distinct despite the narrative binary of Christian Europe and the Muslim Middle East that dominates the secular discourse of Dutch multiculturalism. This ethnographically based project focuses on Dutch-Syriac efforts to cultivate a distinct moral identity that encompasses both their religious commitment to an ancient, sacred past -- as well as their political aspirations to achieve recognition as an indigenous ethnic group in the Middle East -- through international diasporic activism. This identity is crafted and contested through the practice of liturgical song (the focal point of Syriac religious observance and cultural performance), and then deployed via political advocacy and activism in a broader global field. In this study, musical expression and moral identity emerge as distinct yet entangled threads from Syriac Orthodox Christian engagements with the Dutch multiculturalism debates and with international geopolitical conversations about secularism, political identity, and religious identity. Even as they negotiate persistent marginalization and misrecognition, Middle Eastern Christians unsettle the racial and religious categories undergirding the popular narrative of Judeo-Christian secular Europe, defining new conceptions of religious difference within a plural Europe.
Stoetzer, Bettina Yvonne, U. of California, Santa Cruz, CA - To aid research on 'At the Edges of the City: An Ethnography of Affective Landscapes and Racial Geographies in Berlin,' supervised by Dr. Lisa Beth Rofel
BETTINA STOETZER, then a student at University of California, Santa Cruz, California, received funding in October 2006 to aid research on 'At the Edges of the City: An Ethnography of Affective Landscapes and Racial Geographies in Berlin,' supervised by Dr. Lisa Rofel. The city of Berlin and the surrounding East German countryside together make an intriguing site to explore how boundaries are made and remade in a changing Europe. While debates about urban 'segregation' and 'ghettoization' proliferate in the city, Berlin simultaneously prides itself on being the 'greenest city' in Europe. Yet Berlin's many landscapes -- its urban districts, parks, green spaces, and rural edges -- offer both a trap and a refuge for different populations. Conducting research with immigrant and refugee communities living at the edge of the city -- as well as communities in one of Berlin's officially declared 'districts with special need for development' -- this one-year ethnographic project examines how contemporary urban and rural landscapes in and around Berlin become important in struggles over borders and thus in projects of inclusion and exclusion. Through interviews, informal conversations and participant observation, the project explores the following questions: 1) How do immigrants and refugees, city planners, public policy makers, park rangers, East Germans, and tourists transform urban and rural landscapes in and around Berlin through their planning, regulation, use, and experience of these spaces? 2) How and to what extent does the transformation of Berlin's urban and rural landscapes (and 'nature spaces' in particular) efface old divisions, reinscribe past histories and construct new ethnic, national and racialized forms of belonging? And 3) what are the various folk geographies and discrepant ways in which immigrants and other local actors that are situated at various social margins, experience, imagine and remake the material environments in which they live?
Kuppinger, Dr. Petra Yvonne, Monmouth College, Monmouth, IL - To aid research on 'Space, Culture, and Islam in Stuttgart, Germany'
DR. PETRA YVONNE KUPPINGER, Monmouth College, Monmouth, Illinois, was awarded a grant in April 2006 to aid research on 'Space, Culture, and Islam in Stuttgart, Germany.' This project examined spatial and cultural aspects in Stuttgart, Germany, where Islam has become a constituting and negotiating element. Conducting ethnographic research in three mosques and a multi-cultural neighborhood, this project examined the everyday making and remaking of urban spaces and cultures with the participation of Muslim individuals and communities. Central findings include the recognition of complex articulations of Muslims and mosque communities with the city and society. Depending on localities, ethnic and religious contexts, specific individuals, and aspects of urban politics, Muslims and mosque communities participate and shape, and are shaped, by spatial, social and cultural contexts. Mosque communities integrate into local contexts, in one case as a 'local' mosque which participates, much like a church, in community affairs. Another mosque is a vibrant social and economic center, a third is a platform for dynamic debates about what it means to be a Muslim in Germany, or increasingly a German Muslim. In the multi-cultural neighborhood, contrary to public statements, Islam does not figure as a hindrance to integration. Social, educational but also occupational disadvantages as experienced by many migrant teenagers, Muslim and non-Muslim alike, figure much more prominently in this regard.
Cartelli, Philip Aaron, Harvard U., Cambridge, MA - To aid research on 'Marseille-J4: The (Re)production of Space in a French Mediterranean Port City,' supervised by Dr. Mary Steedly
PHILIP CARTELLI, then a student at Harvard University, Cambridge, Massachusetts, received funding in October 2013 to aid research on 'Marseille-J4: The (Re)production of Space in a French Mediterranean Port City,' supervised by Dr. Mary Steedly. Confronting their increasingly peripheral role in trade networks, former industrial port towns around the world have sought to redefine themselves in order to attract outside investment and visitors. Such processes tend to involve superficial facelifts as well as more lasting changes in infrastructure and accessibility. The Euroméditerranée urban redevelopment project in Marseille, currently the largest of its type under way in Europe, is one such example of a multi-faceted development scheme, with a variety of positive and negative repercussions for Marseillais of different backgrounds and occupations. The dissertation explores the specific transformation of the J4, a waterfront esplanade in downtown Marseille, from a non-purposed common space to one housing two cultural institutions directed towards a largely middle-class public. Beginning before the J4's transformation in 2010 and culminating in 2014, one year after Marseille had assumed the title of European Capital of Culture, fieldwork unraveled competing exigencies of the J4's changing users and its newly imposed and institutionalized appropriate uses. The grantee accomplished this research through participating in the J4's daily life, conducting interviews with those in the echelons of institutional power, archival research, and considering the perspectives of daily and occasional users of the space.
Vilageliu, Dr. Roger Canals, U. of Barcelona, Barcelona, Spain - To aid filmmaking on 'Afro-Venezuelan Rituals in Barcelona: A Comparative Study of Religious Nomadism through Film' - Fejos Postdoctoral Fellowship
Preliminary abstract: 'Gods in motion' is a film about the practice of Afro-Venezuelan religious rituals in Barcelona (Spain). The project focuses on the cult of María Lionza, a highly popular Afro-American ritual in Venezuela in which episodes of spirit possession are common. At the same time, the film will show how the celebration in honor of San Juan Batista is introduced in Barcelona, combining with the Catalan celebration of Sant Joan, and will demonstrate the practice of the cult of the Virgin of Chiquinquirá, patron saint of the region of Maracaibo. All three cults are closely related and mutually complement each other. By following a group of believers and a cult groups made up of both Catalans and Venezuelans, the film will show how these religions are adapted to a new cultural context, being modified and incorporating elements of local culture. The film aims to contribute significantly to current debates about diaspora, religion and transnationalism. 'Gods in Motion' is an innovative film which combines images filmed in Venezuela with others filmed in Barcelona. Through this 'transcultural montage', the film aims to show the continuities and discontinuities which emerge from a religious practice when this takes on a transnational dimension.
Marquez, Jr., Arturo, Northwestern U., Evanston, IL - To aid research on 'A Senegalese Odyssey: Migration and Mental Health in Catalonia, Spain,' supervised by Dr. Rebecca A. Seligman
ARTURO MARQUEZ, JR., then a student at Northwestern University, Evanston, Illinois, received funding in April 2013 to aid research on 'A Senegalese Odyssey: Migration and Mental Health in Catalonia, Spain,' supervised by Dr. Rebecca A. Seligman. This dissertation research provides an ethnographic study of the production, circulation, and recontextualization of humanitarian discourse in local institutions working with undocumented and tenuously documented West African residents in the province of Barcelona. Based on eighteen months of fieldwork, this study demonstrates the ways in which institutional discourse anchored in psychiatric and humanitarian registers enables forms of recognition according to broader subject formation processes and subsumes West Africans' lived experience within a distinct model of institutional personhood. Fieldwork was conducted in two main institutions and in multiple non-institutional contexts. With unemployment at record high levels, many West Africans have relied on 'occupied' industrial buildings and complexes as strategic spaces for housing, work, and transnational social relations. Local groups have made human rights claims on behalf of migrants, but in mobilizing public support they have relied on language that reifies the figure of the 'humanitarian subject' embedded in state governmentality. The struggles of West Africans, specifically from Senegal, align with an alternative model of personhood and a distinct transnational morality, which are ultimately obfuscated in the odyssey to remain in Spain.