The Lindo lab specializes in mapping little-explored human lineages of the Americas.
Previously published research found evidence of the tuberculosis bacterium in the skeletal material of 1,400-year-old Andean mummies, contradicting some theories that TB did not exist in South America until the arrival of Europeans 500 years ago.
The current paper provides the first evidence for a human immune-system response to TB in ancient Andeans and gives clues to when and how their genomes may have adapted to that exposure.
Among the strongest signals detected were for biomarkers that are switched on in modern humans during an active TB infection. The researchers modeled the timing of selection for several of the genes involved in the TB-response pathways. Although they were not as strong as for exposure to TB, some signals were also detected for biomarkers related to adaptation to hypoxia, or low levels of oxygen in the blood that result from living at high altitude.
“Human-pathogen co-evolution is an understudied area that has a huge bearing on modern-day public health,” Sophie Joseph says. “Understanding how pathogens and humans have been linked and affecting each other over time may give insights into novel treatments for any number of infectious diseases.”
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!
SJ Dillon has been awarded the National Science Foundation’s Graduate Research Fellowship for their dissertation research into gender dysphoria. They will will provide an ethnographic account of a diverse group of trans communities in contemporary Atlanta, Georgia, and will compare discourses on gender dysphoria in national medical and state-level legal discourses to that ethnographic data.
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.
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
Miriam will be joining James Madison University for the 2021-2022 academic year as a Preparing Future Faculty (PFF) fellow. The Preparing Future Faculty Program at JMU seeks to promote access, inclusion and diversity that are foundational for the provision of outstanding education. The program provides teaching opportunities, mentorship, and professional development to doctoral candidates prior to the completion of the dissertation.
Sarah Kovalaskas joined the Department of Anthropology as a graduate student in 2018 and recently published a paper titled “Comparative analyses of the Pan lineage reveal selection on gene pathways associated with diet and sociality in bonobos” in the journal Genes, Brain and Behavior. Second and third authors are Jim Rilling, professor and department chair at Emory’s Department of Anthropology, and John Lindo, assistant professor at Emory’s Department of Anthropology.
“I feel like this paper was a great example of seizing an idea and making use of already existing data in that all the genomes are all publicly available online and we just needed the storage space and computational know-how to carry it out. The idea of ‘self domestication’ is something that I’ve been interested in and thinking about for a while, and I was hoping to work on similar topics for my dissertation. Even though I’m going in a different direction now it was a really nice way for me to build relationships with professors in the department after Adrian Jaeggi left Emory to continue his research at the University of Zurich. It also allowed me to dip my toes into other fields (genomics) and see how I could incorporate those techniques with my own interests and background working in the field with bonobos.”
PhD Candidate Elena Lesley has been selected by the Woodrow Wilson National Fellowship Foundation as one of 23 Charlotte W. Newcombe Doctoral Dissertation Fellows for 2020-2021. The Newcombe Fellowship is the nation’s largest and most prestigious award for PhD candidates in the humanities and social sciences addressing questions of ethical and religious values.
Her dissertation examines Buddhist-influenced mental health interventions in Cambodia. Since first traveling to Cambodia in 2004, Lesley’s work in the country has been supported by the Henry Luce Foundation, a Fulbright fellowship, the Wenner-Gren Foundation and the Blakemore Foundation, among others. The results of her research have appeared in Ethnos: Journal of Anthropology, the journal of Genocide Studies and Prevention, the U.K. literary magazine Granta, Necropolitics and Remembering Genocide.
Lesley has a BA from Brown University and an MS from Rutgers University. Before coming to Emory, she worked as a journalist in the U.S. and abroad, and also as a Senior Research Specialist at Princeton University.
The Anthropology Department is pleased to announce our 2020 student award winners! Please join us in congratulating undergraduates Isabel Slingerland, Claire Biffl, Emma Hanlon, Evan Amaral and Rebecca Rusnak, and graduate students Sara Kauko and Shreyas Sreenath. Undergraduate awards were conferred at a virtual celebration on Friday, April 24. See below for detailed award descriptions. We are so proud of our many impressive students!
2020 Undergraduate Student Awards
Outstanding Senior Award: Isabel Slingerland
Outstanding Junior Award: Evan Amaral and Rebecca Rusnak
Marjorie Shostak Prize for Excellent and Humanity in Ethnographic Writing:
Claire Biffl for her honors thesis “Experiences of Aging, Kinship, Death, and Independence in an Independent Living Facility”
Emma Hanlon for her honors thesis “Negotiating Spirituality: Ritual, Language, and Space in the First Existentialist Congregation of Atlanta”
2020 Graduate Student Awards:
Marjorie Shostak Prize for Excellent and Humanity in Ethnographic Writing: Shreyas Sreenath for his dissertation “Black Spot: An Account of Caste and Discards in 21st Century Bangalore”
George Armelagos Award for Excellence in Teaching by a Graduate Student: Sara Kauko and Shreyas Sreenath