Associate Professor of Anthropology
Coordinator for Asian Studies
Ph.D., M. Phil., M.A., Columbia University
B.A., McGill University
Politics of ritual, sacrifice, religion and the state; hermeneutic contestation; social and cultural theory; transformations of sacred spaces; monumentality, identity, and material culture; Nepal, Himalaya, South Asia
Anthropology of Art, South Asia, Theory in Anthropology, Religion, Psychological Anthropology, Festivals, Human Evolution, Introduction to Cultural Anthropology, Anthropology of the Himalaya
"Monumentality, Identity, and the State: Local Practice, World Heritage, and Heterotopia at Swayambhu, Nepal," Anthropological Quarterly, 75:2, 2002, pp. 269-316.
"Personal Theory: Towards a satisfactory explanation for why I study Newar culture; or, Dyah Wa? ("God Crazy")," Newah Vijnana, The Journal of Newar Studies, vol. 4, 2000/01, pp. 1-21.
"Envisioning Identity: Deity, Person, and Practice in the Kathmandu Valley," American Ethnologist, 27:3, 2000, pp. 702-735.
"Unruly Readings: Neofetishes, Paradoxical Singularities, and the Violence of Authentic Value," Ethnos, vol. 64:2, 1999, pp. 250-262.
"Human Agency and Divine Power: Transforming Images and Recreating Gods among the Newar," History of Religions, 34(3), 1995, pp. 201-240
"Blood and Bodhisattvas: Sacrifice among the Newar Buddhists of Nepal," In Ramble, Chalrles and Martin Brauen, (eds.).The Anthropology of Tibet and the Himalayas, University of Zurich, (Zurich: 1993), pp. 258-269.
I have been collaborating with students (Maura Mae Deedy ('03)Christopher O'Keeffe ('05), Tenzing Norzom ('05), and Delilah Griswold ('08)) in creating a digital archive and web-site on the recent transformations of one of Nepal's most significant Buddhist sites, Swayambhu. And I have been collaborated with Kerry Teamey ('04) on the sacred sites project and long term research that I have been conducting on religious festivity in the Kathmandu Valley.
During the summer of 2006, I accompanied a group of students and Prof. Jeffrey Timm of the Religion Department on a study tour of Bhutan as part of his Engaged Buddhism Course, and in the Fall of 2009 I went with Prof. Bianca Cody-Murphy to Bhutan to help set up the Wheaton Study Abroad Program at the Royal Thimpu University.