Chikako Ozawa-de Silva receives double book prizes for The Anatomy of Loneliness: the Francis L. K. Hsu Book Prize and the Victor Turner Book Prize

Professor Chikako-de Silva’s monograph, The Anatomy of Loneliness: Suicide, Social Connection, and the Search for Relational Meaning in Contemporary Japan received the 2022 Francis L. K. Hsu Prize and, as an honorable mention, was one of the six books awarded the Victor Turner Prize. See the full reviews below.

The Francis L. K. Hsu Prize is given to the book that was judged to have made the most significant contribution to the field of Anthropology of East Asia and is awarded by the American Anthropological Association’s Society for East Asian Anthropology. In The Anatomy of Loneliness, Ozawa-de Silva gracefully threads the needle of writing for a non-specialist audience while adding to conversations about loneliness, suicide, and social connection in the anthropology of East Asia. Moreover, she writes about the particularities of a social phenomenon in Japan in ways that speak to global experiences of loneliness as a part of the human condition, but one exacerbated by the structures of modern life and neoliberal policies. To do so, the book draws together current research in anthropology, sociology, psychology, and neuroscience/developmental biology, to theorize the anatomy of loneliness as both individual and social. The chapters chart Ozawa-de Silva’s research journey from a study of the dramatic increase in suicides in Japan beginning in 1998, to her discovery that a lack of social connection, loneliness, and a sense of meaning in life better reflected the stories she encountered than the assumed economic or mental health causes. In order to study suicide ethnographically, the book analyses first, second, and third person accounts seen through the phenomenon of suicide websites, the commodification of intimacy, the perceptions of college students, and the 2011 natural and nuclear disasters. The book ends with a timely focus on the communal loneliness of areas forgotten in post-Fukushima recovery initiatives and emerging examples of their resilience through community. Thus, Ozawa-de Silva writes about suicide and loneliness in Japan in ways that speak to wider global trends while giving us some hint at potentially better ways to live today. The committee also found Chikako’s book to be “poignant, richly ethnographic, and an exemplary instance of a book that really speaks beyond our field.”

The Victor Turner Prize in Ethnographic Writing is an annual juried book award by the American Anthropological Association’s Society for Humanistic Anthropology (SHA). The prize committee “seeks graceful, accessible ethnographic writing which deeply explores its subject and contributes in innovative and engaging ways to the genre(s) of ethnography and the field of humanistic (and/or post-humanistic) anthropology.” Chikako Ozawa-de Silva’s The Anatomy of Loneliness humanistically explores issues of human biology, and it analytically transforms loneliness from an individual state of being into a societal predicament. This book is a jarring, empathetic, and even paradoxical diagnosis of emerging collective social structures that make people feel alone. Along the way, readers are introduced to a brave and novel vision for what an inclusive society might mean. The book’s subject matter, from mental health to suicide, is challenging — but Ozawa-de Silva shows us how to rigorously write these topics in ways that cultivate inclusive engagement rather than reproduce the senses of alienation the book explores. The committee also felt that The Anatomy of Loneliness offers a truly unique, distinguished, and even experimental model of accessibility. This book is lucidly written. it is also a text that creatively and transparently brings the reader alongside the author in all her intellectual premises, all her conceptual inspirations, and every one of her turns of thought.  

Watch Professor Ozawa-de Silva read the first 5-minutes of her book here.

Dr. Isabella Alexander (PhD 2016) receives the 2022 Elliott P. Skinner Book Award

The Association for Africanist Anthropology has awarded Dr. Isabella Alexander the 2022 Elliott P. Skinner Book Award for her book Burning at Europe’s Borders.

This prize is awarded to the book that “best furthers both the global community of Africanist scholars and the wider interests of the African continent, with special consideration given to works drawing upon extensive research in Africa and advancing new methodologies for anthropological fieldwork in Africa.”

Alumni Dr. Alexander Hinton is awarded the 2022 Anthropology in Media Award (AIME)


Dr. Alexander Hinton graduated in 1997 and majored in Psychology and Cultural Anthropology. His dissertation was on the Cambodian genocide. Today, he is a Distinguished Professor of Anthropology, Director of the Center for the Genocide and Human Rights, and UNESCO Chair in Genocide Prevention at Rutgers University, Newark. He is an award-winning author and editor of seventeen books, including most recently, Anthropological Witness: Lessons from the Khmer Rouge Tribunal (Cornell, 2022)—which focuses on his testimony as an expert witness at the Khmer Rouge Tribunal and his exchange with “Brother Number Two.”

The AIME award is reserved for persons who have “raised public awareness of anthropology and have had a broad and sustained public impact at local, national, and international level.” Congratulations Dr. Alexander Hinton!

Read more about the AAA 2022 Award Recipients here!

Lori Jahnke awarded grant for Digital Archives and Indigenous Afterlives of Scientific Objects project.

Lori Jahnke, the Department of Anthropology librarian, and her colleagues at the New Jersey Institute of Technology, University of Iowa, and researchers at Fiocruz will share a three-year grant from the National Science Foundation aimed at responsible management of scientific collections created under unequal power dynamics. Jahnke and her colleagues plan to establish and test a methodology for collaborative, community-based work to document and understand subjects’ experience of scientific research and the afterlives of scientific objects that are produced. The project will help researchers reevaluate assumptions about data collection, their methodologies, intellectual property and knowledge production.

Read more about the research here.

Marcela Benítez is awarded AI.Humanity Seed Grant for AI Forest: Cognition in the Wild proposal.

Marcela Benítez (Emory University, Emory College of Arts and Sciences, Department of Anthropology) and Jacob Abernethy (Georgia Tech, School of Computer Science) were recipients of the AI.Humanity Seed Grant Program. They were awarded $100,000 in funding towards their proposal to develop and implement “smart” testing stations using artificial intelligence (AI) for long-term cognitive assessment and monitoring of wild capuchin monkeys at the Toboga Forest Reserve in Costa Rica.

Ruşen Bingül has been awarded the American Ethnological Society (AES) Field Grant and the Halle Institute Global Research Fellowship for her summer doctoral research fieldwork.

Ruşen Bingül, a second-year Ph.D. student, has been awarded the American Ethnological Society (AES) Field Grant and the Halle Institute Global Research Fellowship for her summer doctoral research fieldwork. Both grants are for students who are in the pre-candidacy and whose projects involve ethnographic field research in anthropology or allied fields. Ruşen will use these grants for her summer fieldwork from May 15 to August 20, focusing on legal pluralism and alternative justice mechanism among Kurds in Mardin, the Kurdish Region of Turkey.

2022 Graduate Student Awards

Chikako Ozawa-de Silva, Elena Lesley, Bruce Knauft, Bradd Shore

Marjorie Shostak Award for Excellence and Humanity in Ethnography: 

  • 1st prize: Elena Lesley  for her dissertation “Testimony as Transformation: Resilience, Regeneration, and Moral Action through Spiritually-Adapted Narrative Therapy in Cambodia”, advised by Bruce Knauft.
  • Runner up: Tatenda Mangurenje for her dissertation “Fractured Belonging: Black Police Officers and the New Civil Rights Movement”, advised by Peter Brown.

George Armelagos Award for Excellence in Teaching by a Graduate Student: Megan Beney Kilgore and Scott Schnur

2022 Anthropology Undergraduate Student Award Winners

2022 Undergraduate Student Awards

The Anthropology Department is pleased to announce our 2022 student award winners!  In addition to granting a record number of departmental awards, we were thrilled to be able to honor seven rising seniors with our first ever Trevor E. Stokol Scholarship, for research which they will be conducting during their senior year.  Undergraduate awards were conferred at a ceremony on Monday, April 25.   We are so proud of our many impressive students!

For award descriptions and past winners, visit our Departmental Awards webpage.

Outstanding Senior Award: Rosseirys De La Rosa, Sabrina Jin, and Priscilla Lin

Outstanding Junior Award: Hunter Akridge, Rachel Broun, Abhiram Manda

Marjorie Shostak Award for Excellence and Humanity in Ethnography:

  • Priscilla Lin  for her honors thesis “Realities of First-Generation, Low-Income Scholars at Predominately White Institutions: The Emory Experience”, advised by Justin Hosbey.
  • Lauren Oates for her Capstone project “Places of Permanent Precarity: An Examination of Palimpsest Landscapes in Dekalb County’s Constitution Lakes Park”, advised by Kristin Phillips.

Trevor E. Stokol Scholarship for Undergraduate Research

  • Hunter Akridge
  • Pamela Beniwal
  • Sophia Bereaud
  • Nicole Felix-Tovar
  • Danielle Mangabat
  • Alvaro Perez Daisson
  • Christopher Zeuthen
Hunter Akridge, Pamela Beniwal, Sophia Bereaud, Nicole Felix-Tovar, Alvaro Perez Daisson, Christopher Zeuthen. Not pictured: Danielle Mangabat.

Distinguished Professor Emerita Corinne A. Kratz receives 2021 Council for Museum Anthropology Lifetime Achievement/Distinguished Service Award

The CMA is delighted to announce the winner of the 2021 Council for Museum Anthropology Lifetime Achievement/Distinguished Service Award: Corinne A. Kratz, Distinguished Professor of Anthropology and African Studies Emerita at Emory University, and Emory Director for the African Critical Inquiry Program. Thanks to all who submitted nominations for consideration.

Kratz’s academic work spans a lifetime of scholarly and engaged anthropological achievement. Over the course of her near 50-year career, Kratz has redefined both museum anthropology and critical museology, especially at the intersections between these fields and African Studies. Kratz is the author of the award-winning book The Ones That Are Wanted: Communication and the Politics of Representation in a Photographic Exhibition, which is a description of, and extended critical reflection upon, Kratz’s own exhibition ‘Okiek Portraits,’ a traveling exhibition of fieldwork photographs taken during her work with the Kaplelach and Kipchornwonek Okiek people of South- central Kenya. Including tri-lingual captions, short dialogues between Kratz and her Okiek interlocutors, and the use of color photographs, the exhibition challenged earlier visual stereotypes of the Okiek. Based on the failures and successes of the exhibition as it traveled around the United States, Kratz’s ethnography was one of the first book- length studies to take seriously the idea that an exhibition may be engaged as an anthropological ‘field site’ in its own right. It is a seminal study for visual anthropology and critical museology, and exemplifies participatory and collaborative methodologies while taking seriously the dynamics and contexts of visitors and institutions. In addition, Kratz is a lead editor on the landmark volume Museum Frictions: Public Cultures/Global Transformations, one of the most important contributions to critical museology of recent decades.

Kratz’s impact on a global community of scholars is also evident in her mentorship, especially her support of African Early Career Researchers. In addition to mentoring young scholars at Emory University, Kratz’s service and mentoring activities extended transnationally to the Institutions of Public Culture Program, a partnership between the Center for the Study of Public Scholarship at Emory and South African cultural institutions. Following Ivan Karp’s death in 2011, Kratz carried forward their joint commitment to developing public intellectual life in Africa by establishing the Ivan Karp and Corinne Kratz Fund. The Fund supported the creation of the African Critical Inquiry Program, which provides research funding for African doctoral students from across the continent and sponsors innovative annual workshops in South Africa. We honor her generosity of spirit and time, and her indelible human connection with a global community of colleagues.