Specialising in several core areas of research

The  Department of Anthropology has research strengths in a number of core areas of socio-cultural anthropology.

Our areas of expertise include:

  • medical anthropology covering global health, infectious disease, reproductive and sexual health and psychological anthropology
  • religion studies, particularly Islam, Christianity and new religious formations
  • development studies and the social impact of globalising economic formations, mobility and migration, human rights, and new social movements
  • phenomenology, psychological anthropology, embodied consciousness and experience, and the anthropology of emotion.

Graffiti of a yellow cartoon man on a wallWe sponsor an annual Research Week which strengthens our global networks for collaboration, and sees visiting scholars of international stature help prepare our students to be professionally competitive. We also support a very active Colloquium seminar series.

Since our founding under the late Professor Chandra Jayawardena, the Department of Anthropology has maintained a broad international focus, extensive social engagement, concentration on the politics of everyday life, concern about the ethical requirements of anthropology, and an eagerness to innovate. Our staff members are all active as researchers, pursuing a huge range of projects and fostering student research at all levels. We maintain a high degree of research support, including funding for HDR students' field research.

Our research areas:

Medical anthropology seeks to understand the factors that influence our health and wellbeing. We examine global health, infectious disease, and reproductive and sexual health. A number of our researchers have a strong interest in medical anthropology, including:

Religions and the conflicts between them helped form the discipline of anthropology. At Macquarie, we study contemporary religion and culture. In particular, staff have research expertise in Islam, Buddhism and Hinduism, and Christianity in the Pacific. The following scholars specialise in the study of religion:

Our department has long maintained its strong focus on political anthropology and the study of development. We support applied anthropology in a variety of situations, and a number of our department members work on political, social and development issues around the world. They include legal plurality, urbanisation, indigenous rights, and human rights among others. Although most researchers acknowledge political and social issues in their work, staff who consistently focus on this area include:

This specialisation considers the great variety of human experience. It explores how, as humans, we differ in our perception, cognition, and basic psychological functions, including our mental health. Macquarie's Department of Anthropology is unique in Australia for its concentration of researchers with psychological and phenomenological research interests. If you are interested in the anthropological study of experience, emotion, perception, health or cognition, contact one of our researchers:

HDR research projects

Student name

Thesis title

Barr, Phillipa

Atmospheres without limits

Bayarri Toscano, Gabriel

Demands for Rights and Identities Recognition: a Comparative-reflexive Analysis between Brazil and Australia. An Ethnographic and Audio-visual Approach

Bell, Lara

Bodies through the machines: An Ethnography of Prostrate Cancer and Robot-Assisted Surgery

Bryant, Avril

Renegotiating Identity: Asylum Seeker and Refugee Settlement in Hobart, Tasmania

Casbolt, Lucinda

Bicycle-Body-City: Experiences of Urban Cycling in Copenhagen

Costa, Roberto

Resistance and Happiness in Melanesian Religious Rituality

Dabinet, Anmarie

Recuperating the 'Disappeared'. Memories and Stories from Argentina and Spain in the Post Dictatorship Era

Finis, Kenneth

Cambodia and intergenerational impact after trauma: The past and the present amongst the post-1979 generation

LaRoche, Kathryn

Exploring the journey of 'mifepristone'

Matteson, Michael

Safe Houses and Active Supporters in the Underground Draft Resistance Movement in Australian 1971-72

McGirr, Lara

The effect of emerging adulthood on the wellbeing of training doctors in Australia

Morgan, Brendan

The Practice of everyday Antihaitianismo: A study of daily interaction in Santo Domingo

Negro, Jesse

Urban Sprawl in Sydney: Planning, Housing, Environment, and the Meaning of the Built Environment

Pereira Dore, Mayane

Creative Cities: a Study About Social Innovation Processes and New Forms of Political Organisation

Sharma, Sophiya

Religious Performativity And Cultural Exchange Between Transgender Communities In The Indian And Pakistani Punjab: A Cross-Border Study

Uygur Dogan, Aysegul

Constituting a Diaspora: The Turkish State and the Mobilization of Turkish People outside if Turkey

Young, Erin

Social Media:An Ethnographic Exploration of Virtual Spaces

NameThesis title
Dr Sumant BadamiThe Ant Knows its Way: Paniya negotiations with death, place and belonging
Dr Muhammad BilalAllah's Community: The Interplay of Islam and Everyday Life in Pakistan. An Ethnography of a Rawalpindi Urban Community
Dr Gillian BowanPaying Guests: Between Kinship and Capital—An Ethnography of Boarding House Residents in Urban South India
Dr Fiona BoxallThe New Age of Corporate Management: Weird Scenes Inside the Goldmine'
Dr Lesley BranaganNavigating Uncertainty: Illness, Care and Agency in Urban India
Dr Sophie ChaoIn the Shadow of the Palms: Plant-Human Relations among Marind-Anim, West Papua
Dr Anjalee CohenYouth Culture in Northern Thailand
Dr Monica DalidowiczLearning Kathak: Apprenticeship in the Guru-Shishya Parampara
Dr Jennifer Deger'Shimmering Screens: Mimesis, Media and a Vision of a Yolngu Aboriginal Modernity'
Dr Anton PiyarathneConstructing Commongrounds: Everyday Lifeworlds Beyond Politicised Ethnicities in Sri Lanka
Dr Rui DengExtraterritorial and Extramarital: the Dynamics of Social Change, Migration and HIV Vulnerability in Southwest of China
Dr Kristina Everett'Impossible Realities: Indigenous and Non-indigenous Relationships in a Sydney Aboriginal Community'
Dr Lorraine GibsonArticulating Culture(s): Being Black in Wilcannia
Dr Caroline GrillotThe fringes of conjugality: On fantasies, tactics and representations of Sino-Vietnamese encounters in Borderlands
Dr Malcolm HaddonThe Nectar of Translation: Conversion, Mimesis and Cultural Translation in Krishna Consciousness'
Dr Nipatthra HaritavornWhy do they call me Khiya?: Gender and identity construction amongst people injecting drugs in Thailand
Dr Max HarwoodMan Made: Nationalism, Military Service & Masculinity in Istanbul & Tel Aviv
Dr Johanes HerlijantoEmulating China: Representation of China and the contemporary critique of Indonesia
Dr Hau-Ren HungCultural survival, indigenous knowledge,and relational sustainability: A comparison of case studies in Taiwan and Australia
Dr Lisa Siobhan IrvingMoral diversity on the straight path: perspectives on sex education, sexuality and romance among unmarried Muslims in Singapore and Australia
Dr Paul KeilLiving in Elephant Worlds: Human-elephant relations on the fringe of forest and village in Assam, Northeast India
Dr Charlotte Keskin-JoppienCulture of Everyday Politics - Politics of Everyday Culture. An Inquiry Into Municipal Politics in Konya and Eskisehir
Dr Maarten Lecompte The emerging storywriter: A study of linguistic and meta-linguistic phenomena in the writing of Cèmuhi, a Melanesian Language of New Caledonia
Dr Yunxia LiFrom poppy planters to rubber growers: An ethnographic account of cross-border supply chain capitalism in Northwest Laos
Dr Victoria LoblayEmbodied Encounters with Reproductive Technologies: Constellations of sexual difference and the boundaries of knowledge in the clinic
Dr Timothy LynchMemories of Ritual Child Abuse in Satanic Cults in Australia
Dr Casimir MacGregorScience and Controversy: an historical ethnography of stem cells, bioethics and politics in Australia
Dr Paul MasonFighting for peace of mind: A cross-cultural survey of fight-dancing in Indonesia and Brazil
Dr Jovan MaudThe Sacred Borderland: The State, a Buddhist Saint and Transnational Religion in Southern Thailand
Dr Lindy McDougallThe biomagical vulva: a 'clean slit'
Dr Sverre MollandThe perfect business? Traffickers, victims and anti-traffickers along the Mekong
Dr Anne Marie MonchampMemory, Categorization and Language: Cognition and Culture in Bilingual Wallpiri Aboriginal Children
Dr Angeles Montalvo ChavesDecolonising Art and Media in Madrid and Sydney - The Articulation of Political Identities in the (In)formal Resistance
Dr Helena OnnudottirClaiming Inheritance Aboriginal People, Native Title and Cultural Heritage: a Story from Dubbo New South Wales
Dr Joseph Rickson"On Sovereign Ground" The Politics of Everyday Life: Kachin at the Thai Burma Border
Dr Anupom RoyLabouring for Breath: Lived Experience of Chronic Breathlessness in Rural Bangladesh
Dr Mukdawan SakboonCitizenship and education as the basis for national integration of ethnic minorities in North Thailand
Dr Douangphet SayanousoChanging lives: Development and reproductive health amongst the Akha, an Ethnic minority group in Northwest Laos
Dr David ScottMaking Art and Community: An Ethnographic Study of Being an Emerging Artist in Sydney
Dr Gwendolyn ScottEmployment Experiences of Tertiary Educated Australian Muslim Women in Sydney's Multicultural Society and their Religious Identity
Dr Nila SharmaBorn to migrate: South Asian women in Sydney and the convergence of marriage, migration and maternity in shaping their participation in the paid workforce
Dr Rochelle Spencer'Encountering Development, Rethinking Tourism: The Convergence of Development and Tourism'
Dr Michaela Stockey-BridgeFinding hope on the Transnational Surrogacy Trail from Australia to India
Dr Guy ThrelfoThey don't look like refugees: The presentation of "refugeeness" among Liberians in exile
Dr Merriden VarrallWe Chinese: Understanding Chinese foreign policy through making of diplomats
Dr Martina WardellIndigenous Education, Christianity, and Community at Woolaning Homeland Christian College
Dr Mariske Westendorp“In the Eye of the Typhoon”: Aspirations of Buddhists and Catholics in Turbulent Hong Kong
Dr Tomas WilkoszewskiThe Uyghur Community in Turkey: Nostalgic Pan-Turkism, Ethno-Nationalism and Political Adjustments
Dr Rosemary WissTryst Troppo sex, tourism, relationships (Puerto Galera, The Philippines)
Dr Juan ZhangBorder opened up: Everyday business in a China-Vietnam frontier
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Last updated: 17 Dec 2019