School of Humanities and Sciences
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Dunlevie Family Professor and Professor, by courtesy, of Classics
BioIan Hodder joined the Department of Cultural and Social Anthropology in September of 1999. Among his publications are: Symbols in Action (Cambridge 1982), Reading the Past (Cambridge 1986), The Domestication of Europe (Oxford 1990), The Archaeological Process (Oxford 1999). Catalhoyuk: The Leopard's Tale (Thames and Hudson 2006), and Entangled. An archaeology of the relationships between humans and things (Wiley and Blackwell, 2012). Professor Hodder has been conducting the excavation of the 9,000 year-old Neolithic site of Catalhoyuk in central Turkey since 1993. The 25-year project has three aims - to place the art from the site in its full environmental, economic and social context, to conserve the paintings, plasters and mud walls, and to present the site to the public. The project is also associated with attempts to develop reflexive methods in archaeology. Dr. Hodder is currently the Dunlevie Family Professor.
William H. Durham
Bing Professor in Human Biology, Emeritus
BioWilliam (Bill) Durham is Bing Professor in Human Biology, Bass University Fellow in Undergraduate Education, and a Senior Fellow in the Woods Institute for the Environment at Stanford. He has taught in Human Biology and Anthropology at Stanford since 1977, when he came from the Society of Fellows at the University of Michigan.
Today, Bill's main interests are environmental anthropology, the “coevolution” of genetic and cultural change in human populations, and the challenges of sustainable development in the tropics, especially Galapagos, Peru, and Costa Rica. Along with Stanford Professor Rodolfo Dirzo, Bill is co-director of the Osa-Golfito Initiative (INOGO) in the Woods Institute, working with Costa Ricans to develop a sustainability strategy for the southern region of the country.
Bill’s publications include the books Scarcity and Survival in Central America (Stanford Press 1979; and in Spanish, by UCA Editores 1988), Coevolution: Genes, Culture, and Human Diversity (Stanford Press, 1991), The Social Causes of Environmental Destruction in Latin America (U. of Michigan Press, 1995, with M. Painter), Inbreeding, Incest and the Incest Taboo (Stanford Press 2004, with A. Wolf), and Ecotourism and Conservation in the Americas (CABI, 2008, with A. Stronza). In addition, he served as Editor in Chief for 16 volumes of the Annual Review of Anthropology between 1992 and 2008.
A recipient of the MacArthur Prize Fellowship, Bill has also received five awards for teaching and faculty leadership at Stanford. He was Founding Co-Director of the Center for Responsible Travel (CREST), a research organization that views tourism as a means to promote local livelihoods and environmental conservation. He has led more than 25 Stanford Alumni Association trips to Galapagos, the Amazon, East Africa, and elsewhere.
Howard H. and Jessie T. Watkins University Professor and Professor, by courtesy, of Psychology
BioTanya Marie Luhrmann is the Watkins University Professor in the Stanford Anthropology Department. Her work focuses on the edge of experience: on voices, visions, the world of the supernatural and the world of psychosis. She has done ethnography on the streets of Chicago with homeless and psychotic women, and worked with people who hear voices in Chennai, Accra and the South Bay. She has also done fieldwork with evangelical Christians who seek to hear God speak back, with Zoroastrians who set out to create a more mystical faith, and with people who practice magic. She uses a combination of ethnographic and experimental methods to understand the phenomenology of unusual sensory experiences, the way they are shaped by ideas about minds and persons, and what we can learn from this social shaping that can help us to help those whose voices are distressing.
She was elected to the American Academy of Arts and Sciences in 2003 and received a John Guggenheim Fellowship award in 2007.When God Talks Back was named a NYT Notable Book of the Year and a Kirkus Reviews Best Book of the Year. She has published over thirty OpEds in The New York Times, and her work has been featured in The New Yorker, The New York Review of Books, The Times Literary Supplement, Science News, and many other publications. Her new book, Our Most Troubling Madness: Schizophrenia and Culture, was published by the University of California Press in October 2016.
Anne T. and Robert M. Bass Professor in the School of Humanities and Sciences and Professor of Anthropology and of Biology
Current Research and Scholarly InterestsCoevolution of human form and behavior over the past 6-7 million years, with special emphasis on the emergence of fully modern humans in the past 60-50,000 years. Field and lab research in South Africa.
Professor of Anthropology
BioLynn Meskell is Professor in the Department of Anthropology at Stanford University, former Director of the Stanford Archaeology Center, and Honorary Professor at the Rock Art Research Institute in the School of Geography, Archaeology and Environmental Studies at the University of the Witwatersrand, Johannesburg, South Africa. She is the founding editor of the Journal of Social Archaeology. She has broad theoretical interests from socio-politics and ethics to feminist theory and embodiment. Currently she is conducting an institutional ethnography of UNESCO World Heritage, tracing the politics of governance and sovereignty and the subsequent implications for multilateral diplomacy, international conservation, and heritage rights. Meskell’s previous fieldwork examined natural and cultural heritage in South Africa, the archaeology of figurines and burial in Neolithic Turkey and social life in New Kingdom Egypt. Over the past twenty years she has been awarded grants and fellowships including those from the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, the National Science Foundation, the Australian Research Council, the American Academy in Rome, the School of American Research, Oxford University and Cambridge University. Some of her recent books and edited collections include The Nature of Culture: The New South Africa (2011, Blackwells) and Global Heritage: A Reader (2015, Blackwells). Employing archival and ethnographic analysis, her new book deals with UNESCO’s early forays into a one-world archaeology and its later commitments to global heritage.Lynn Meskell is Professor in the Department of Anthropology at Stanford University, former Director of the Stanford Archaeology Center, and Honorary Professor at the Rock Art Research Institute in the School of Geography, Archaeology and Environmental Studies at the University of the Witwatersrand, Johannesburg, South Africa. She is the founding editor of the Journal of Social Archaeology. She has broad theoretical interests from socio-politics and ethics to feminist theory and embodiment. Currently she is conducting an institutional ethnography of UNESCO World Heritage, tracing the politics of governance and sovereignty and the subsequent implications for multilateral diplomacy, international conservation, and heritage rights. Meskell’s previous fieldwork examined natural and cultural heritage in South Africa, the archaeology of figurines and burial in Neolithic Turkey and social life in New Kingdom Egypt. Over the past twenty years she has been awarded grants and fellowships including those from the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, the National Science Foundation, the Australian Research Council, the American Academy in Rome, the School of American Research, Oxford University and Cambridge University. Some of her recent books and edited collections include The Nature of Culture: The New South Africa (2011, Blackwells) and Global Heritage: A Reader (2015, Blackwells). Employing archival and ethnographic analysis, her new book deals with UNESCO’s early forays into a one-world archaeology and its later commitments to global heritage.
Susan S. and William H. Hindle Professor in the School of Humanities and Sciences
Current Research and Scholarly InterestsJames's Ferguson's research has focused on southern Africa (especially Lesotho, Zambia, South Africa, and Namibia), and has engaged a broad range of theoretical and ethnographic issues. These include the politics of “development”, rural-urban migration, changing topgraphies of property and wealth, constructions of space and place, urban culture in mining towns, experiences of modernity, the spatialization of states, the place of “Africa” in a real and imagined world, and the theory and politics of ethnography. Running through much of this work is a concern with how discourses organized around concepts such as “development” and “modernity” intersect the lives of ordinary people.
Professor Ferguson's most recent work has explored the surprising creation and/or expansion (both in southern Africa and across the global South) of social welfare programs targeting the poor, anchored in schemes that directly transfer small amounts of cash to large numbers of low-income people. His work aims to situate these programs within a larger “politics of distribution,” and to show how they are linked to emergent forms of distributive politics in contexts where new masses of “working age” people are supported by means other than wage labor. In such settings of scarce and diminishing employment opportunities, distributive practices and distributive politics are acquiring a new centrality, with social protection, in particular, emerging as a key arena within which fundamental questions are addressed concerning how resources should be distributed, who is entitled to receive them, and why. In this context, new political possibilities and dangers are emerging, even as new analytical and critical strategies are required. A book on this topic (Give a Man a Fish: Reflections on the New Politics of Distribution) was recently published by Duke University Press.
Associate Professor of Anthropology
BioI am an anthropologist of science and medicine interested in how social identities, health outcomes, and molecular genetic findings increasingly intersect. In my first book, The Enculturated Gene: Sickle Cell Health Politics and Biological Difference in West Africa (Princeton, 2011), I draw on over a decade of ethnographic fieldwork in the US, France and Senegal. By bringing the lives of people with sickle cell anemia together with how the science about them has been made, The Enculturated Gene weaves together postcolonial genetic science, the effects of structural adjustment on health resources, and patient activism between Senegal and France to show how African sickle cell has been ordered in ethnic-national terms at the level of the gene. This work is situated within a larger conversation on ethics, power, and the ways that human biological material, within the context of culture, is rarely apolitical. The Enculturated Gene has won the Royal Anthropological Institute’s 2011 Amaury Talbot Prize for the most valuable work of African Anthropology and the American Anthropological Association’s 2014 Robert B. Textor and Family Prize for Excellence in Anticipatory Anthropology.
Since 2003, I have also conducted multi-sited field research in the United States on emergent technologies that measure human genetic diversity among populations and between individuals. As an outgrowth of this research, I have become particularly interested in how scientists promote civic ideas of “genetic citizenship,” how they enlist participant involvement in specific disease research problems, and how they also contribute to social movements of historical reckoning. In its detail, this second book project explores how U.S. political concepts of diversity, usually glossed as “race,” function in genetic recruitment protocols and study designs for research on complex diseases, “tailored medicine,” ancestry tracing, and personal genomics. This project will also examine the fraught relationship between private property and personal privacy with regards to biogenetic data.
My work has been funded by the National Science Foundation, the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, the Social Science Research Council, the Andrew and Florence White Fellows program in Medicine and the Humanities, the Ford Foundation, and the Wenner-Gren Foundation for Anthropological Research. I have also been an invited scholar at the Centre de Sociologie de l'Innovation in Paris (1997-1998, 2000 and 2002), a USIA Fulbright Scholar to Senegal, a fellow at the School of Social Science at the Institute for Advanced Study in Princeton (2004-2005), and a Robert Wood Johnson Health and Society Scholar at the Harvard School of Public Health (2005-2007). I recently completed a Scholars Award in NSF's Science & Society Program to research my second book called Tabula Raza: Mapping Race and Human Diversity in American Genome Science.
Associate Professor of Anthropology and Senior Fellow, by courtesy, at the Freeman Spogli Institute for International Studies
BioMatthew Kohrman joined Stanford’s faculty in 1999. His research and writing bring multiple methods to bear on the ways health, culture, and politics are interrelated. Focusing on the People's Republic of China, he engages various intellectual terrains such as governmentality, gender theory, political economy, critical science studies, and embodiment. His first monograph, Bodies of Difference: Experiences of Disability and Institutional Advocacy in the Making of Modern China, examines links between the emergence of a state-sponsored disability-advocacy organization and the lives of Chinese men who have trouble walking. In recent years, Kohrman has been conducting research projects aimed at analyzing and intervening in the biopolitics of cigarette smoking and production. These projects expand upon analytical themes of Kohrman’s disability research and engage in novel ways techniques of public health.