Graduate Fellows

Alamo Bryan, Marina (sociocultural) ma3482@columbia.edu

Assali, Hadeel (sociocultural) ha2355@columbia.edu

Aung, Geoffrey Rathgeb (sociocultural) gra2001@columbia.edu

Az, Elif Irem (sociocultural) eia2109@columbia.edu

The connections between the body/self and labor in Turkey are central to my research interests. In my doctoral work, I plan to focus on the intersections of the ongoing rural transformation in Aegean Turkey, national and international agricultural regulations of the neoliberal era, public discourses and policies on coal mining, and mineworkers’ understandings of the body as the self and as labor and of life and death. My master’s thesis was on military masculinities and professional military education in contemporary Turkey, and I have ongoing interests in militaries, militarism, gender and violence. Finally, I hope the interplay between fieldwork, ethnographic writing and fiction to be a fundamental concern of my research and writing.

Bail, Shishir (sociocultural) sb4026@columbia.edu

Bajalia, George (sociocultural) agb2153@columbia.edu 
George Bajalia works at the intersection of the performing arts and anthropology of border, focusing on the publics, infrastructures, and discourses enabled and sustained by borderlands. As an artist, he has produced and directed work in Chicago, and New York, as well as Tangier, Morocco- the site of his ongoing research into modes of negotiating and conceptualizing the frontiers between Morocco, Algeria, and Spain.

Benjamin, Jeff (archeology) jlb2289@columbia.edu
I am interested in archaeologies of sensitivity, language, industry and intention. I am concerned with the singular nature of the event of industrialization, as purposeful human activity, and the material forms and remnants of its perpetuation through sonic and haptic entrainment; repetition, trance, and habit. I see archaeology as a discipline of responsiveness and awareness - a discipline of writing, sensitivity and memory. Early twentieth century North America saw rapid technological expansion as well as popular concerns of environmental degradation and loss, and I am fascinated with the minutae; the specific archaeological traces of early sensory responses to the material fastening of the built environment to the earth, histories of arbitrary perceptual categorization, synaesthetic responses to materials and technological processes, ecological/industrial synthesis, heraldic sonic forms, horizontalism, and praxis (as this pertains to climate change). To supplement texts, I search for sources of archaeological thought from disparate traditions: literature, art, philosophy and the street. I would also like to explore (and create) open pathways between archaeological and artistic expression through their shared effort to contend with the challenge of form and formlessness.

Birkett, Tommy (sociocultural) mmb2255@columbia.edu

Blank, Katharina (sociocultural) kab2229@columbia.edu
Urban Brazil

Bondura, Valerie (archeology) veb2112@columbia.edu

My research is a comparative study of 18th-20th ceramics from a Spanish land grant community and an Indigenous community in the northern Rio Grande region of New Mexico. I am interested in questions of identity, ethnicity, and landscape, and especially how writings on settler colonialism intersect with archaeological interpretation in the American West.

Carr, Danielle (sociocultural) djc2200@columbia.edu
My research takes the ontological snag of the voluntary will as its organizing node to examine questions of mechanistic life, immanent ethics, technoscientific capitalization, and the history of neurology. My ethnographic work currently examines three sites: a clinical trial using Deep Brain Stimulation to treat depression, privatize opiate recovery clinics treating with Suboxone, and a variety of private, public, and academic actors using Transcranial Direct Current Stimulation. These sites are situated in relation to a historical examination of the emergence of neurology as a discipline during the late 17th century, focusing particularly on the work and influence of Thomas Willis.

Casey, Clare (sociocultural) cc2325@columbia.edu

Chamorro, Luciana (sociocultural) lfc2129@columbia.edu

Chatterjee, Syantani (sociocultural) sc3079@columbia.edu
I am interested in exploring the emerging dominance of medical rationality, ushered in by an era of medical tourism in India. I hope to locate surrogacy within this conversation.

Constantine, Melissa (sociocultural) mac2414@columbia.edu

Davis, Natasha (sociocultural) nld2117@columbia.edu

Davies, Nile (sociocultural) nd2495@columbia.edu

Elmakias, Zohar (sociocultural) ze2124@columbia.edu
Following my background in documentary film and cultural studies, and my work as a writer and an editor for several alternative media platforms in Israel, focusing on issues of culture, racism, and violence - I am interested in visual anthropology of Israel/Palestine within the broader context of the modern Middle East. In particular, I wish to reveal stories of movement and transition, of multiculturalism, of segregation and of hegemony, and in the articulation of national and cultural narratives of identity in urban landscapes in the region. I will conduct an "excavation" of sites which are capsules of time and space, examining architectural monuments, photography, and lived experience as a portal to broader questions of nationality, exclusion and cultural hegemony - and to the role movement and mobility play in them. I am interested in where movement is allowed and restricted. I see the juxtaposition of photography and architecture as a site in which society tells and is told its story; where lies take the shape of buildings and street names; and where truths are bent and broken, then emerge, once more.

Faux, Chloé (sociocultural) csf2107@columbia.edu

Fitoussi, Margaux Taylor Myriam (sociocultural) margaux.fitoussi@columbia.edu

Grody, Evin (archeology) efg2122@columbia.edu

Hoffman, Emily (sociocultural) emily.hoffman@columbia.edu

Ibraheem, Aamer (sociocultural) ani2110@columbia.edu

My research interests focus on the ways daily practices, contestations, and lived processes through which spatial scales, such as the “global” and “national”, are produced and experienced at the level of the body, family, and neighborhood in the occupied Syrian Golan Heights (Jawlan in Arabic), paying close attention to gendered experience, the built environment, surveillance, and (in)security. I aim to broaden the approaches of current studies on modern surveillance in the Middle East to inquire into local national practices and changes taking place in the occupied Golan where contexts of modernity, Israeli settler-colonialism, and the ongoing Syrian civil war interlock. My broader interests include national, linguistic, and cultural belonging and alienation; space and borders, indigenous memories and imaginations under settler-colonialism.

Jain, Sarandha (sociocultural) j.sarandha@columbia.edu

Alyssa James (sociocultural) aj2150@columbia.edu                                                                                                                      

My proposed research will follow the progress of Martinique Developpement's nascent 'Café de Légende' project which I situate within broader historical and contemporary cultural narratives and political relationships. In particular, I'm interested in how the project's progress seems to require the selective telling and re-telling of Martinique's colonial history and how that process influences cultural memory, subjectivity, and the identity that is projected to the rest of the world.

Kaganova, Marina (sociocultural) mk2841@columbia.edu
Marina Kaganova is a poet who loves and loathes Thomas Bernhard, hates The Magic Mountain, reads Svejk in Russian, loves Buba Kikabidze movies, sings Georgian polyphony, has relatives in Tkibuli, Georgia named Nato and Husband. Her work focuses on, to put it grandly, the poetics of Nationalism in the republic of Georgia.

Kalm, Gustav (sociocultural) gk2362@columbia.edu

Kristjansson, Margaux (sociocultural) mlk2171@columbia.edu

Lagerqvist, Peter (sociocultural) pol2104@columbia.edu

Liberatore, Ben (sociocultural) b.liberatore@columbia.edu

Alexander Maier (sociocultural) am4996@columbia.edu      

Mazariegos, Juan Carlos (sociocultural) jcm2189@columbia.edu

Mitchem, Alexandria Taylor (archaeology) atm2161@columbia.edu

Mohaiemen, Naeem (sociocultural) nm2678@columbia.edu
Naeem Mohaiemen is a Bangladeshi writer and visual artist [shobak.org]. Since 1999, he has worked on a series of film, photography, and mixed-media projects that use the museum as platform for an “exploded history book.” The most recent project is The young man was, a fragmentary history of the 1970s ultra-left. One chapter, the film United Red Army (about the 1977 hijack of Japan Airlines), was described as “engagements with a revolutionary past meaningful in the sudden eruption of a revolutionary present” (Wilson-Goldie, Bidoun), and is in the collection of the Tate Modern museum. In Bangladesh, institutional pressure to create what Naeem has ironically called “shothik itihash (correct history)” is suffocating, and he explores the museum as a space for more ambiguous conversations. His work has been published in Sun Never Sets: South Asian Migrants in an Age of US Global Power (NYU), Visual Culture Reader, 3rd ed. (Routledge), Sound Unbound (MIT Press), Granta (Pakistan Issue), Rethinking Marxism, etc. His critique of Sarmila Bose’s revisionist history [columbia.academia.edu/Mohaiemen] of the 1971 Bangladesh liberation war was widely cited and reprinted, including in Lines of Control: Partition as Productive Space (Johnson Museum). At Columbia, Naeem is exploring the social construction of foundational myths around the 1971 war and the ensuing decade of disenchantment.

Montero, Fernando (sociocultural) fm2440@columbia.edu

My research focuses on social inequality, ethnic relations, colonialism and postcoloniality, and subject formation in Central America and the urban United States. After working for 3 years on an ethnographic study of a predominantly Puerto Rican neighborhood in North Philadelphia, I am interested in writing an ethnography of the Moskitia in the Caribbean coast of Nicaragua and Honduras. Among other theoretical and practical questions, I am interested in examining howthe Miskitu political rights movements of the Sandinista era have fared in the contemporary era characterized by neoliberal socioeconomic policies and a rising concern over drug- andcrime-related violence. The Caribbean coast has historically been home to the largest concentrations of African descendants in Central America, and the Miskitu population itself is the product of a long process of mestizaje between local indigenous groups, freed andrunaway slaves, and West Indian immigrants. This raises important questions concerning the place of blackness and indigenousness in local race relations, state interventions, and interactions with external forces like transnational corporations, enclave economies, international powers, and the multi-million dollar drug economy. I am also an aspiring photographer and filmmaker and I seek to combine the tools of ethnography with those of visual media to both access my fieldsites and document them effectively.

Pisapia, Jasmine (sociocultural) jp3379@columbia.edu
As part of her previous research in comparative literature and media studies, Jasmine Pisapia traced the creation of images linked to the writings of anthropologist Ernesto de Martino on mourning and possession rituals in Southern Italy. Her masters thesis, completed at the Université de Montréal, involved substantial archival research and examined films, photographs, drawings, and fieldwork notebooks tied to this specific moment in Italian anthropology during the 1950-­1960s. Her engagement with media and aesthetic forms has been complemented by her experience as a programmer for Montreal’s Festival du nouveau cinéma where, from 2010 to 2013, she curated experimental films, audio­visual performances, Web­-based documentaries, interactive installations, and conferences spanning a variety of topics from celluloid restoration to virtual worlds, to the visual dimensions of radio compositions. Her research interests include the logics of possession in an expanded sense, an ethnography of archives, histories of modernity, and the relationships between image, sound and text. Her current work seeks to unearth, in present times, the twin histories of Southern Italy's ethnographic representations and processes of industrialization, paying careful attention to the interlacing of aesthetics and politics.

Quiniou, Helene (sociocultural) hq2136@columbia.edu

Ragupathy, Akshay (sociocultural) ar3786@columbia.edu

Ratte, Stephanie (sociocultural) smr2224@columbia.edu

Reinhart, Natalie (sociocultural) nsr2134@columbia.edu

Reumert, Anna Simone (sociocultural) asr2191@columbia.edu
I am interested in the contemporary and historical migratory relations between French West Africa and the Levant (Lebanon/Syria) and, particularly, in the triad colonial relationship between France, Senegal and Lebanon shaped through the trading of bodies, ideas and colonial disciplinary structures between these distinct, yet interconnected, places. By looking at the particular colonial encounter between Senegalese mercenaries, deployed by the French Army during Lebanon's anti-colonial uprising in World War II, and Lebanese colonial citizens, I am interested in understanding how certain colonial subjectivities, loyalties and aspirations were formed through this relationship. I draw on this historical context in my prospective fieldwork on everyday structural and discursive racism towards black male workers in contemporary Beirut.

Romero-Dianderas, Eduardo (sociocultural) er2770@columbia.edu
Prior to coming to Columbia, my research has mainly addressed the various interfaces between indigenous engagements with forests and state-led forms of tropical conservation in the Peruvian Amazon. In my doctoral work, I expect to engage in recent conversations on science and technology, material bureaucracies, and forest governance in order to understand the ways tropical forests (and their human and nonhuman dwellers) come to be contentiously known and governed in the era of digital transparency and emerging ecological anxieties.

Sabiston, Leslie James (sociocultural) ljs2191@columbia.edu

Schirrer, Anna Kirstine (sociocultural) aks2217@columbia.edu

Shah, Omer (sociocutural) os2288@columbia.edu

Silverman, Charlotte (sociocultural) cas2282@columbia.edu

Singleton, Courtney (archeology) ces2210@columbia.edu
Archaeology of the contemporary past, homelessness

Straub, Dakota (sociocultural) ds2398@columbia.edu

Tarnowski, Stefan (sociocultural) stefan.tarnowski@columbia.edu

Taylor, Howard (sociocultural) howard.taylor@columbia.edu

Thompsett, Fern (sociocultural) ft2502@columbia.edu

Tynes, Brendane Arrica (sociocultural) bat2131@columbia.edu

Twu, Chih-yu (sociocultural) ct2507@columbia.edu

van de Sande, Joel (sociocultural) jv2675@columbia.edu         

West, Daniel (sociocultural) daniel.west@columbia.edu