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Congratulations to Dr. Michele Buzon who was recently appointed to a five-year term as a University Faculty Scholar.

Melissa Remis has studied the effects of integrated conservation and development in the Dzanga-Sangha Dense Forest Reserve, this includes the first look at the impact on people's health. You will find continued reading on her research at this link to the article featured in Purdue News.

Congratulations to Associate Professor Michele Buzon on her award from the National Science Foundation for her project entitled, “Collaborative Research: Impact and Accommodation Through Cultural Contact.” She will use the funds ($135,272) to support her bioarchaeological research investigating the impact of Egypt’s New Kingdom Empire (c. 1500-1050 BC) on the Kerma culture in Nubia through an examination of identity and health before and after the conquest and colonization of the area (with UCSB collaborator Stuart Tyson Smith).  This research is also being supported by  Purdue Office of the Vice President for Research Bridge Funding Program ($48,045).

Assistant Professor Kory Cooper’s collaborative archaeological research and teaching with the School of Materials Engineering was highlighted in the April 8th, 2014 installment of “Purdue Profiles.” In this piece Cooper talks about the course “Archaeology and Materials Science”, which he co-teaches with MSE faculty. Click here for a link to this article.

Katelyn Reavis presented her research with Dr. Michele Buzon at the American Association of Physical Anthropology in Calgary, Alberta Canada. (pictured below)
Reavis and Buzon Calgary, Alberta

Melissa Remis and Carolyn Jost Robinson just published an article on Ethnoprimatology and Multispecies approaches with coauthors Nick Malone, Alison Wade, Agustin Fuentes, Erin Riley, Melissa Remis and Carolyn Jost Robinson.  2014.   “Ethnoprimatology: Critical interdisciplinary and multi species approaches in anthropology.  Critique of Anthropology 341(1):8-29.

Congratulations to the three undergraduate anthropology students whose research is being showcased at the annual Honors Colloquium on March 5 (PMU Room 118, 12-2 p.m.).  They are:

  • Michael Lockman (Buzon, ANTH 336) "Mesoamerican Cultural Accommodation of Deformity"
  • Katelyn Reavis (Buzon, ANTH 498) "Investigating Senescence in Ancient Nubia"
  • Tyler Pitts (Nolan, ANTH 205) "Conformity and Individuality: Female Circumcision and Genital Piercing"

VaughnKevin Vaughn was in Japan during February to participate in two international symposia in Osaka and Yamagata.

Dr. Ian Lindsay recently won the Departmental Excellence in Teaching Award 2014.

In November, Dr. Ian Lindsay was awarded two grants from Purdue's Office of the Vice President for Research in support of his archaeological work in Armenia:
• Transdisciplinary and Interdisciplinary Research Grant ($8778): "Using Purdue’s MSE Electron Microscopy Facility to Study Pottery Technology and Social Organization among Bronze Age Fortress Settlements in Armenia."
• Non-laboratory Research Infrastructure and Equipment Program Grant, Tier 2 ($17,861): "Funding Request for Archaeological Survey and Remote Sensing Equipment." 


Annual Anthropology Association meetings/T. Lindsay   On November 23, 2014, our department participated at the Grad Fair at the American Anthropological Association's annual meeting in Chicago, Illinois. Over 50 people stopped by our table to ask about our program, and had a chance to chat about the many different aspects of graduate school. Many thanks to everyone who helped, Anjali Bhardwaj, Ryan Plis, Ellen Gruenbaum, and Talin Lindsay!

Purdue anthropologist selected for 2015 Race Across USA to combine 3,000-mile run with research. Read details here.

Ashley Ruse, a 2011 undergraduate, has accepted an RN position at Yukon-Kuskokwim Health Corporation in Bethel, Alaska in the YK Delta. Post graduation, Ashley continued to pursue her bachelors in nursing, where she recently graduated this August. YKHC serves over 50 villages consisting predominately of the native Yup’ik Eskimo.

Congratulations to Diana Steele who received a Global Synergy Research Grant for Students from the Office of the Vice President for Research.  The grant will fund dissertation work entitled, “Geographies of Difference: Examining Race and Place through Amazonian Migrants Livelihoods in Peru.”

Dr. Laura Zanotti is seeking an undergraduate student interested in visual anthropology, Amazonian ethnography, and community-conservation partnerships to help re-format and design field guides for an indigenous community in Brazil.  A background in working with visual materials and Adobe Creative Suite is preferred but not required.  Interested students should email Dr. Laura Zanotti with their resume and a short paragraph about their interest.  Offered for 1 credit.

Dr. Evelyn Blackwood was interviewed on the topic of “Global Genders” on Public Radio International’s weekly program “To the Best of Our Knowledge,” which aired on Aug. 30, 2013.  You can listen to the program here.

Dr. Michele Buzon spoke with the National Geographic Radio Weekend Show (June 23) about the Nubian Pharaohs and her research.  You can listen to it here.

Congratulations to undergraduate Alisha Yadav, the recipient of the 2013 O. Michael Watson Award for Outstanding Graduating Senior.

Dr. Michele Buzon’s collaborative bioarchaeological research in Tombos, Sudan has been highlighted by the National Science Foundation. Click here for more information.

 Elizabeth Wirtz IIT Madras     Anthropology graduate student Elizabeth Wirtz (second from left) presented a paper in a Purdue collaborative conference on "The State and Social Movements:  Violence, Health, and Food Security" in India in March 2013 at the IIT Madras.  She is standing next to conference organizer Dr. Mangala Subramaniam (center) of the Department of Sociology at Purdue.

Evelyn Blackwood was recently interviewed on BBC Radio's Today Programme concerning her research on the matrilineal Minangkabau in Indonesia.  The interview focused on the lives of men in a matrilineal society, and was part of a BBC mini series examining changing Western conceptions of masculinity. 

One of our recent PhD graduates, Katie Smith has accepted a new position as postdoctoral fellow in the Department of Educational Psychology at the University of Houston.  Katie is working in the lab of Dr. Ezemenari Obasi.  Katie will be examining stress and addiction in African American populations.  The study will be examining the role of addiction as a coping mechanism for stress in a population that deals with multiple daily chronic stressors, including health disparities and discrimination.

Evelyn Latour (MS 2012) has been hired as a Market Research Strategist for an international firm, CarbonSix, doing client interfacing, field research study management, qualitative data analysis and report writeup. Her coworkers include a nice mixture of academic and business backgrounds--MAs, a couple of PhDs, and some MBAs--which is just the sort of interdisciplinary work environment she hoped for.  Good luck, Evelyn!

Carlson Research  Dr. Bryce Carlson has authored a paper on diurnal variation in nutrient consumption appearing in this month's issue of the American Journal of Primatology.  With co-authors Dr. Jessica Rothman and Dr. John Mitani, Dr. Carlson showed that wild chimpanzees at Kibale National Park, Uganda preferentially consumed 2 common dietary resources late in the day when their nutritional quality was highest.  This study suggests chimpanzees may be capable of tracking changes in nutritional composition on the order of hours, not just weeks or months. For more information please click here
Carlson Research

The Anthropology Department is pleased to invite students to submit papers for the 2013 Brazil Abroad scholarship competition.   Check out the flyer and find out more information about the program here.

Franco Lai has won the 2013 Center for Research on Diversity and Inclusion Graduate Student Award for Research Excellence! Her award-winning paper is titled "Sexualities in Transnational Migrant Circuits: Female same-sex relations among female domestic migrant workers in Hong Kong."  For further information about the award click here.

Professor Evelyn Blackwood was recently awarded a Title IX service award as a pioneer, advocate, and mentor in the area of gender equity. Congratulations Dr. Blackwood!  Click here for Purdue Today's feature of Dr. Blackwood's accomplishments.

Are you planning on applying to the Anthropology Graduate Program for Fall 2013?  Please join us for a visitation day on Monday, October 22 to learn about graduate study at Purdue!  For more information and to RSVP, please contact Talin Lindsay at”

Graduate Student Diana Steele has won the 2012 Central States Anthropological Society student paper competition (graduate division) for her paper, "Punarunas and Llamativos: Place-Based Identities of Amazonian Migrant Tour Guides in Cusco, Peru." The award comes with a $300 cash prize. Congratulations to Diana!

Brooke Benner, Andrew BakerHigh school student, Brooke Benner, a senior at Catholic Central High School in Grand Rapids, Michigan, worked with Dr. Michele Buzon, Associate Professor of Anthropology, and MS student, Andrew Baker, on the analysis of muscle markers on bone using a 3-D scanner.  This project is part of the Research Seminar Program at Catholic Central where students choose to learn how to conduct scientific research with a research mentor in their area of interest.

The Anthropology Department has lost a colleague.  On July 1, 2012, retired professor O. Michael Watson, passed away at the age of 76, from cancer of the esophagus.  He died peacefully at home, and his beloved daughters were with him.
He was born in 1936 in Knoxville, Tennessee, and grew up in Colorado.  After serving in the U.S. Marine Corps, he studied anthropology at the University of Colorado, Boulder, and earned a BA and Ph.D.   In 1967 joined the Purdue University faculty as one of the founders of the Anthropology Department.  Professor Watson’s early research focused on proxemic analysis, which he published in Proxemic Behavior: A Cross-Cultural Study (Mouton, 1970). He subsequently turned to visual anthropology, which led to a number of publications and graduate seminars, as well as his production of the classic film Spirit of Ethnography.
Professor Watson devoted his career to the growth of the discipline of anthropology and the department.  A renowned teacher and beloved professor, he won numerous teaching awards during his 40 years at Purdue.  Generations of students took his love of anthropology and enthusiasm for human cultural diversity along with them as they pursued their many directions.  When Professor Watson retired a few years ago, the Department of Anthropology decided to honor him by naming our annual student award the “O. Michael Watson Outstanding Graduating Senior Award.”
Known for his energy and amazing ability to find humor everywhere, he will be remembered for the joy and laughter he brought to so many lives. 

Jennifer Studebaker (M.S. May 2012) has just started a new position as Office Coordinator at the Society for Ethnomusicology at Indiana University.  She reports that she really likes the position and will be learning a lot about non-profit organization management.  Congratulations, Jennifer!

A publication based on MS research by PhD student, Sarah Schrader, is now available online in the American Journal of Physical Anthropology: “Activity patterns in New Kingdom Nubia: An examination of entheseal remodeling and osteoarthritis at Tombos”

Doctoral student Ryan Plis and Dr. Evelyn Blackwood received the Center for Research on Diversity and Inclusion 2012 award for the best paper in the category of Faculty research.  The paper is entitled: Trans Technologies and Identities in the United States.  It will be published in Technologies of Sexuality and Sexual Health, Lenore Manderson, editor, Routledge, 2012.

The Spring issue of THiNK magazine features the work of several anthropology faculty members and students.  We invite you to check out the news here.

Graduate student Jonas Ecke received the Human Rights Defender Award from the Society of Applied Anthropology (SfAA) for his efforts of combining his research on West African refugees with activism work.

The 2012 Walter Hirsch Award winner is doctoral student Sarah Schrader.
Doctoral student Kyle Jones is the 2012 recipient of the Committee for the Education of Teaching Assistants Award (CETA).
Dr. Evelyn Blackwood and PhD Candidate Ryan Plis recently received an award from the Center for Research on Diversity and Inclusion.
Verity Whalen received an NSF Dissertation Improvement Grant for her upcoming doctoral research in Peru.
Congratulations to undergraduate Emilie Fleagle, the recipient of the 2012 O. Michael Watson Award for Outstanding Graduating Senior. 
Congratulations to all seniors who are graduating this year majoring in anthropology and also to those students who are graduating with honors in anthropology—Kevin Jones, Emilie Fleagle, and Maria Rooijakkers. 

 Gruenbaum, Fleagle, Dean Wiser, Rooijakker  Left to right-Ellen Gruenbaum, Emilie Fleagle, Dean Irwin Weiser, Maria Rooijakkers
Doctoral student Elizabeth Wirtz was recently awarded a Purdue Research Foundation Grant for her dissertation work "Measuring the Impact of Physical and Structural Violence on Somali Refugee Women's Perceptions of Fertility and Motherhood in Kakuma Refugee Camp, Kenya”

Dr. Evelyn Blackwood and Dr. Su’ad Abdul Khabeer presented papers at the Center for Research on Diversity and Inclusion's Spring Symposium on March 29, 2012.   Papers presented focused on cultural marginalization (Abdul Khabeer) and Trans Embodiment (Blackwood).

Ian Lindsay recently presented a talk at the 2011 Chicago Humanities Festival entitled "Can you Dig It?: Technology in the Archaeological Record."  Read more...

The American Anthropological Association’s Association for Queer Anthropology (AQA, formerly the Society of Lesbian and Gay Anthropologists, SOLGA) is very pleased to announce that Evelyn Blackwood has been awarded the 2011 Ruth Benedict Book Prize in the category “Outstanding Monograph” for Falling into the Lesbi World: Desire and Difference in Indonesia (Honolulu: University of Hawai’i Press, 2010).  For more information please see the full press release here.

Andrew Buckser has been named an American Council on Education Fellow for 2011-2012.  The fellowship involves a placement at another university to study key issues in higher education administration. Dr. Buckser is spending the year in the Provost's Office at Cornell University, where he is focusing on the administrative dynamics of interdisciplinary programs.

Andrew Buckser recently presented a paper on The Anthropology of Tourette Syndrome at the Cornell University Anthropology Colloquium Series in Ithaca, New York.

Join us at the Anthropology Fall Open House on Friday, November 11 to learn about graduate study at Purdue!  The event will begin at 10:00am in Stone Hall Room B2 and will include a chance to learn about our MS and PhD graduate degree programs, funding options and faculty research projects.  Take a stroll through campus on a guided tour and enjoy lunch with us.  For more information, please contact Talin Lindsay (  RSVPs requested by October 28.

Wiping Away the Tears Symposium: The Battle of Tippecanoe in History and Memory. Free and open to the public. November 3 - 5, 2011  Purdue University. This symposium marks the 200th anniversary of the Battle of Tippecanoe by creating an opportunity for multiple stakeholders to share what they know about the history of battle and the events which have taken place in Tippecanoe County over the last 200 years. This symposium will shed light on: the circumstances leading up to the Battle of Tippecanoe, its role in the War of 1812, and the experiences of Native participants, as well as providing an opportunity to discuss how these events are interpreted today.
For more information:

Dr. Evelyn Blackwood was recently interviewed by The Daily Beast about her research among the Minangkabau in West Sumatra, Indonesia.  You can find the full article here:

Dr. Cooper was recently awarded a $512,950 grant from the National Science Foundation's Arctic Social Sciences Program for a 3-year program of research titled "Prehistoric Native Copper Technology in Northwest North America: Innovation, Diffusion, and Heritage."

Brazilian Field SchoolDr. Laura Zanotti recently returned from Brazilian Amazon, where she co-taught a study abroad course on indigenous peoples and conservation.  Purdue anthropology major Alexandra Furman (pictured here) was among the select number of students that joined the course this year. 

Kyle Jones has been selected as the 2011 recipient of the College of Liberal Arts Distinguished Master's Thesis Award. His thesis on hip-hop artists in Peru is titled, "Hip Hop Huancayo: Youth Identities, Performative Sites, and the Politics of Legitimation". Kyle is supervised by Dr. Brian Kelly. Congratulations.

PhD student, Sarah Schrader (with advisor Dr. Michele Buzon), was awarded a National Science Foundation Dissertation Improvement Grant entitled, “Bioarchaeological Analysis of Diet and Activity Patterns in the Nile Valley."

PatteeDon Pattee was the recipient of this year's O. Michael Watson Award for the Outstanding Senior in the Department of   Anthropology. He was honored at the College of Liberal Arts Dintinguished Alumni and Outstanding Seniors Banquet on April 8. Congratulations!


This year's recipient of the Ethnographic Essay Award was Jaime Kruis, who wrote about her participant observation of a shabbat service on campus. Her award was presented at the annual Literary Awards Banquet on April 21, 2011







At the Graduate School's annual event honoring graduate student teaching award winners on April 26, 2011, Ryan Plis was honored as the Anthropology Department winner, with Dr. Evelyn Blackwood in attendance.

Latino Learning Center Dr. Blackwood's exciting new "Community Engagement" course (Anth 392, F '11), which offers students hands-on engagement with Latino communities in Indiana, is featured in the Spring2011 CLA Think magazine

PhD student, Sarah Schrader, was featured in an article about her recent Sudan fieldwork in the Purdue Exponent (article link:

Dr. Laura Zanotti was awarded a Kinley Trust grant to carry out ethnographic research in Barrow, Alaska, an Inupiat whaling community. Dr. Zanotti will work with women in the community to better understand well-being and natural resource management.

Dr. Laura Zanotti presented a talk entitled, "Amazonian Landscapes" as part of Eastern Illinois University's Redden lecture series. Zanotti was hosted by Dr. Donald Holly.

SpringFest A SpringFest B

Anthropology Students at Purdue Spring Fest 2011.

Anth Mask Crew

Left to right - Patty Glen, Andrea Ochab, Rachel Duttlinger, Anjali Bhardwaj, and Sirisha Kandukuri

Saturday and Sunday April 9th & 10th was Spring Fest. This annual event provides an opportunity for families in the community to learn about a range of topics being studied at Purdue through games and other activities. Members of the Anthropology Graduate Student Organization and Purdue Anthropology Society (undergraduate) organized mask-making activities and were on hand to talk to the public about Anthropology and its sub-fields.

At the Society for Applied Anthropology meetings in Seattle recently, Elizabeth Wirtz's poster was selected as the second place winner in a large field of presenters.

The Walter Hirsch Award winner for 2011 is Franco Lai. She will receive $1,500 for her research expenses for the project "Sexualities in Travel: Women's Same-sex Relationships among Indonesian Migrant Domestic Workers in Hong Kong."

Three students along with their faculty mentors received PRF fellowships for next year: Diana Howell, Anjali Bhardwaj, and Jeremy Beach.

We are very pleased to announce the hiring of two new faculty members who will join us in August 2011.

Su'ad Abdul Khabeer is joining us from Princeton University, where her dissertation was on "Hip Hop is Islam: Race, Self-Making and Young Muslims in Chicago." She has also worked in Puerto Rico, Egypt, and Syria, and has a varied background in Spanish, Islamic Studies, Arabic, and international Politics. This fall she will introduce a new course, "Anthropology and Blackness."

Bryce Carlson will be joining us from Emory University. He is a biological anthropologist with interests in nutritional ecology. His dissertation research on on primate nutrition was in Kibale National Park in Uganda, and he has also done research in Kenya. He has expertise on isotopic analysis and will be teaching courses on biological anthropology, hominin/human evolution, and nutritional issues.

Dr. Sharon Williams was featured at "Science on Tap" Series in Lafayette. Recent research suggests that there are significant differences in how humans age across the globe. Dr. Sharon Williams is working with the World Health Organization to examine how the process of aging works in several countries across the globe. She recently presented some of the preliminary results along with research from the U.S. to the community at "Science on Tap."