413-A Alumni Bldg.
Area of Interest:
My research interests converge around identity formation, social movements, community organizations and organizing, ethnographically-grounded oral and life history, and action research and collaborative research projects.
Ph.D., 2001, City University of New York Graduate School & University Center
1996 M.Phil. CUNY Graduate School. Major: Anthropology.
1991 M.A. University of South Florida, Tampa, FL. Applied Anthropology.
1987 B.S. College of Charleston, Charleston, S.C. Major: Sociology.
Research & Activities:
Areas of Research Focus
My research concentrates on identity formation, Black identity, social movements, community organizing, community development, ethnographically grounded oral history, welfare reform and access to higher education, and action research. My work and research have primarily been located in Jamaica and in the United States. Broadly speaking, my research interests are concered with social movements, identity, and social transformation in terms of social justice.
Research, Projects & Activities
I have been using life stories and other sources including news stories to explain and document the development of the Rastafari in Jamaica. In particular, I focus on social and racial identity formation among the first two generations (1931-71). I am also interested in issues of development and grassroots organizing in Jamaica. Also, I have been involved with the Rastafari centralization movement-an effort to organize the various Rastafari groups into a federation.
The United States
Much of my work in the U.S. involves collective action, collaborative projects and people-centered community based projects. Amongst the different social movements and community groups I've worked with, identity-related concerns and social justice are themes that have held my attention. Action research strategies and gathering life narratives are methods that figure prominently in my approach.
I have worked with an array of groups including
* welfare reform groups pursuing more accommodative higher education policies for low income people;
* community organizing groups focusing on concerns such as farming and food justice, racial justice, and
living wage policies;
* people-centered community development efforts such as that of a women's organization located in
El Paso, Texas, urban organizations in San Francisco and East Palo Alto, and rural and small town
organizations in the American South.
* Rastafarians working to organize an organization of Rastafarian organizations (e.g. "Houses" and
"Mansions") in Jamaica.
Click here for my academic CV and a fuller list of my publications and contributions.
Courses I Regularly Teach
* Introduction to General Anthropology (Anth 101). An Introduction to the four sub-disciplines in anthropology.
* Anthropology & Community Development (Anth 194). A survey of community development and relevant anthropological contributions to community development.
* Ethnography & Life Stories (Anth 285). An introduction to the theory and methods of doing ethnographically-informed life narrative research.
* Racial Formation in Jamaica (Anth 898). A Semester-long inquiry into how Blackness has formed and evolved in Jamaica.
* Action Research (Anth 499). A class-room based venture into the intricacies of action research focused on relationship and team-building, problem-solving, leadership development, research, and communicating research findings.
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Affiliated and Emeritus Faculty