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Department of Sociology and Anthropology

Conerly Casey

faculty photoAssociate Professor of Anthropology

Education

Ph.D. Anthropology, University of California, Los Angeles, 1997
M.S. Counseling Psychology, University of Southern California, 1986
B.A. Psychology, University of Vermont, 1983

Theoretical Interests

Psychocultural, medical, and sociocultural anthropology; postcolonial, critical and globalization theory; colonialism and postcolonial identity and subjectivity; intersubjectivity and ill health; religious and medical heterodoxy; media, memory, and emotion; "affective citizenship"; the formation of youth groups at the crossroads of global capitalism and religious orthodoxies; vigilantism and militarism; genocide and identity-based violence; domestic violence; social and spatial (in) justice and human rights

Ethnographic Interests

West and North Africa and the Middle East, particularly Nigeria and Niger, Kuwait; and the United States

Current Research Projects

Mediating Violence: Media and Bodily Traces of the 1990 Iraqi Invasion of Kuwait, 2006-present
This project focuses on the dynamics of media and emotion, the sensorial body, and the mediation of expressive arts, in Kuwaiti embodiments of traumatic memory and (ill) health. The research is situated in social contexts and regional dynamics brought about by the 1990 Iraqi invasion of Kuwait, the 2003 U.S. war in Iraq and post-2012 "Arab Spring" social movements.

Working to Death in Kuwait?: Violence and South Asian Labor Migrations in Global Cultural Economies, 2006-present
This research explores the intersections of human trafficking, debt bondage and the increasing prevalence of suicide among Asian domestic laborers in Kuwait. The research is situated within historical and contemporary perspectives on global capitalism and the material and human costs of human trafficking and forced labor.

I completed eight years of research in northern Nigeria on the project entitled Youthful Martyrdom and Heroic Criminality: The Formation of Youth Groups in Northern Nigeria. The project was funded by the Harry Frank Guggenheim Foundation from 2000-2002 and by Fulbright IIE in 2006. I completed additional research in 2008 and 2011. This research traces the formation of youth groups in northern Nigeria, and the lives of youths recruited into armed struggle who through communal ideologies and acts both suffered and meted out physical and metaphysical forms of violence. The research is situated at the intersections of global capitalism, Nigerian political, economic insecurities, and the implementation of Shari'a criminal codes in twelve states of northern Nigeria.

Publications      

Books

2009 (with Salisu Abdullahi and Ismaila Zango, eds.) Studies in Cultural Sociology. Kaduna, Nigeria: Espee Press.

2005 (with Robert Edgerton, eds.) Companion to Psychological Anthropology: Modernity and Psychocultural Change. Malden, MA:  Blackwell Publishers.

Peer-reviewed Publications

2014 Remembering and ill health in post-invasion Kuwait: Topographies, collaborations, mediations. In Genocide and Mass Violence: Memory, Symptom and Recovery, Devon Emerson Hinton and Alexander Laban Hinton, Eds., Cambridge: Cambridge University Press (in press, available October 2014).

2014 The art of suffering: Postcolonial (mis) apprehensions of Nigerian art. In Suffering, Art and Aesthetics, Ratiba Hadj-Moussa and Michael Nijhawan, Eds., New York: Palgrave Macmillan (in press, available July 2014).

2014 "States of Emergency": Armed Youths and Mediations of Islam in Northern Nigeria. Journal of International and Global Studies 5(2): 1-18.

2013 Mediating justice: Youth, media and ‘affective justice’ in the politics of northern Nigeria. In Democracy and Prebendalism in Nigeria: Critical Interpretations, Wale Adebanwi and Ebenezer Obadare, Eds., pp. 201-226. New York: Palgrave Macmillan.

O'Brien, Ann, Mary-Lynn Brecht and Conerly Casey 2008 Narratives of Methamphetamine Abuse: A Qualitative Exploration of Social, Psychological, and Emotional Experiences, Journal of Social Work Practice in the Addictions (8) 3: 343-366.

Articles/Chapters

Remembering and Ill Health in Post-invasion Kuwait: Topographies, Collaborations, Mediations. In Legacies of Mass Violence: Memory, Symptom and Intervention, Alex Hinton and Devon Hinton, Eds., Cambridge University Press, in press.

2013 Mediating justice: Youth, media and 'affective justice' in the politics of northern Nigeria. In Democracy and Prebendalism in Nigeria: Critical Interpretations, Wale Adebanwi and Ebenezer Obadare, eds., Palgrave McMillan Press.

2011 Hypocrisy, spatial (in) justice and youthful 'policing' in northern Nigeria. In Justice et Injustices Spatiales, Bernard Bret, Philippe Gervais-Lambony, Claire Hancock and Fredrick Landy, Eds., pp. 201-218. Paris: Presses Universitaires de Paris Ouest.

2010 Remembering Genocide:  Hypocrisy and the Violence of Local/Global ‘Justice’ in Northern Nigeria. In Local Justice: Global Mechanisms and Local Meanings in the Aftermath of Genocide. Alexander L. Hinton and Devon E. Hinton, eds. New Brunswick, NJ: Rutgers University Press. In press.

2009 Witchcraft and Spirit Possession. In An Introduction to Anthropology and Sociology in Nigeria. Salisu Abdullahi, Ismaila Zango and Conerly Casey, eds. Kano, Nigeria: Bayero University Press.

2009 Mediated Hostility: Media, ‘Affective Citizenship’, and Genocide in Northern Nigeria. In Genocide: Truth, Memory, and Representation. Alexander L. Hinton and Kevin O’Neill, eds. Pp. 247-278. Durham: Duke University Press.

2008 ‘Marginal Muslims’:  Politics and the Perceptual Bounds of Islamic Authenticity in Northern Nigeria. In special issue: Muslim West Africa in the Age of Neoliberalism (Benjamin Soares and Marie Nathalie LeBlanc, guest editors), Africa Today 54 (3): 67-94.

2008 Mediated Hostility, Generation and Victimhood in Northern Nigeria. In Workbook on Ethnic Conflicts. Judy Carter, Vamik Volkan, and George Irani, eds. Princeton: Princeton University Press.

2008 (with Ann O'Brien and Mary-Lynn Brecht) Narratives of Methamphetamine Abuse: A Qualitative Exploration of Social, Psychological, and Emotional Experiences, Journal of Social Work Practice in the Addictions (8) 3: 343-366.

2007 ‘Policing’ through Violence: Fear, Vigilantism, and the Politics of Islam in Northern Nigeria. In Global Vigilantes. David Pratten and Atreyee Sen, eds. Pp. 93-126. London: Hurst & Company. 

2006 Niger (Republic of). In Mosby’s Pocket Guide Series: Cultural Health Assessment. Mosby Publishers. 

2005 Mediating Cultural Communities. Journal of Neuroaesthetic Theory: http://www.artbrain.com.

2003 Robert Edgerton. In Biographical Dictionary of Anthropology, Vered Amit, ed. London:  Routledge.

2001 (with Nancy Anderson, A. Nyamathi, J. McAvoy, and F. Conde) Conceptions about Risk for HIV/AIDS Among Adolescents in Juvenile Detention. Western Journal of Nursing Research 23 (4): 336-359.

1998 Suffering and the Identification of Enemies in Northern Nigeria. Political and Legal Anthropology Review 21 (1): 1-25.

1997 Medicines for Madness: Suffering, Disability, and the Identification of Enemies in

Northern Nigeria. Dissertation, University of California. Ann Arbor, MI:  UMI Publishers.

1996 (Anderson, Nancy, G. Uman, C. Keenan, D. Koniak-Griffin) The Process of Instrument Development for Ethnically Diverse Early Adolescents. The Journal of Early Adolescence 16 (4): 427-450.

News Publication

2012 Memory and Ill Health in Post-Invasion Kuwait: Affective Mediations of Violence. In Anthropology News, Special Edition: Violence and Conflict, 53 (7): 6-8.

Media Interviews

Interviewed by Khaled Al-Ramly, Cover story: The rise of liberalism, and the mask that covers it. Oasis Magazine (2007), 4-5.

Interviewed by R. Farhat, What is stress?, Student Talk Magazine (2007), pp. 68-69.

Interviewed by Dan Birman for a Discovery Television program entitled Alternatives: African Traditional Medicine, produced by Dan Birman Associates, Los Angeles, 2000.

Interviewed for an internationally broadcasted radio show, African Traditional Medicine, produced by Radio Deutsche Welle of Germany and Radio Kano of Kano, Nigeria, 1993

Sponsored Lectures and Symposia

2015 The Sensory Politics of Armed Conflict in Northern Nigeria; sponsored by the Department of Anthropology and the Maxwell School of Citizenship and Public Affairs, January 29, Syracuse University, Syracuse, New York.

2014, Bollywood and Spirit Possession in Northern Nigeria, January 7, American University of Kuwait, Salmiya, Kuwait.

2013, Media and Contours of Islam in Northern Nigeria, Performance of Belonging, Difference and Exclusion in Muslim Africa, organized by Tea Virtanen and Dorothea Schultz; sponsored by the Nordic Africa Institute, December 3-7, Uppsala, Sweden.

2013, Bollywood Banned, and the Electrifying Palmasutra: The Sensory Politics of Love and Pornography in Northern Nigeria, Asian Video Cultures Workshop, organized by Joshua Neves and Bhaskar Sarkar; sponsored by Brown University, October 23-25, Providence, RI.

2013 Bollywood Banned, and the Electrifying Palmasutra, Asian Video Cultures Conference, organized by Joshua Neves and Bhaskar Sarkar, Brown University, Providence, RI.

2011 Mediating justice: Youths, media and 'affective justice' in the politics of northern Nigeria, International Conference, Democracy and Prebendal Politics in Nigeria: Critical Reinterpretations, Governor of Ekiti State, Nigeria, sponsor; Ebenezer Obadare and Wale Adebanwi, co-organizers; Lagos, Nigeria.

2011 Amplifying memory: Topographies, collaborations, mediations in post-invasion Kuwait, UCLA Department of Anthropology and Center for Near East Studies, co-sponsors, UCLA, Los Angeles, California.

2007 Victimhood and postcolonial subjectivity in northern Nigeria. Funded by the Medical Anthropology Seminar, University College London, London, England.

2006 Armed youths. Symposium funded by the Harry Frank Guggenheim Foundation, Ascona, Switzerland.

2003 Mediating cultural communities. Movies, Buildings and Brains, funded by the Department of Art, University of California, Los Angeles, California.

2002 "States of emergency": Islam, youth gangs and the politically unseeable, sponsored by The Sawyer Seminar, Humanities Institute, Emory University, Atlanta, Georgia.

1998 Metalogical lines of flight: Subjective survival and symptoms of schizophrenia and witchcraft in northern Nigeria, International symposium funded by the Russell Sage Foundation entitled The Edge of Experience: Culture, Subjectivity and Schizophrenia, New York, New York.

Selected Conference Presentations (Please see my CV for additional presentations)

2014 Media, innovation and the self-fashioning of Islamic piety in northern Nigeria, Panel: Controversies over innovation and Islamic piety in a global age, organized by Tea Virtenen and Joseph Hill. American Anthropological Association meetings, December 3-7, Washington D.C.

2014 Panel discussion: Perspectives of memory and identity regarding the Iraqi invasion of Kuwait, organized by Christopher Ohan, Middle East Studies Association, November 22-25, Washington D.C.

2013 Scalarities of Feeling: Consciousness and Affective Registers in the Sensory Politics of Northern Nigeria, Political Subjectivity Invited Panel, Organized by Jack Friedman and Claudia Strauss, Society for Psychological Anthropology, April 4-7, San Diego, CA.

Casey, Conerly 2013 Scalarities of Feeling: Consciousness and Affective Registers in the Sensory Politics of Northern Nigeria, Political Subjectivity Invited Panel, Organized by Jack Friedman and Claudia Strauss, Society for Psychological Anthropology, April 4-7, San Diego, CA.

2012 Spirit and matter in Nigerian politics: Embodiment and the aesthetic and rhetoric of political sense. Invited session, Sensing the Political, Nell Quest and Fran Mascia-Lees, Organizers. American Anthropological Association meetings, November 1-18, San Francisco, CA.

2011 Tanko: Witchcraft affliction and paranoid schizophrenia. Invited session: Cultural Variability in Schizophrenia: What We Do and Don't Know, Jocelyn Marrow and Tanya Luhrmann, organizers; Society for Psychological Anthropology Biennial meetings, Los Angeles, CA, April 2.

2011 Vigilant attunements: Violence and the 'magic-art' of media in northern Nigeria. Invited session: The Aesthetics of the Global, Bhaskar Sarkar and Bishnu Ghosh, organizers. Society for Cinema and Media Studies, New Orleans, LA, March 12.

2010 Vigilant attunements: Violence and the 'magic-art' of media in northern Nigeria. Invited session: The Aesthetics of the Global, Bhaskar Sarkar and Bishnu Ghosh, organizers. Cultural Studies Association, Crossroads Conference, Hong Kong

2010 Remembering genocide: Hypocrisy and the violence of local/global 'justice' in northern Nigeria. Invited session, Local Justice: Global Mechanisms and Local Meanings in the Aftermath of Genocide, Alexander Laban Hinton, organizer. Sussex University, Brighton, England

2010 Remembering genocide: Hypocrisy and the violence of local/global 'justice' in northern Nigeria. Invited session, Local Justice: Global Mechanisms and Local Meanings in the Aftermath of Genocide, Alexander Laban Hinton, organizer. American Anthropological Association meetings, New Orleans, LA.

2009 Violence and the amplification of trauma: Child witnesses of the 1990 Iraqi invasion of Kuwait, Invited session, Legacies of Mass Violence, Alexander Hinton and Devon Hinton, organizers, Society for Psychological Anthropology Biennial Meeting, Monterey, CA.

2009 Invited participant, Genocide and Mass Violence: Memory, Symptom and Intervention Conference, Center for the Study of Genocide and Human Rights, Rutgers University, September 17-18, 2009; also presented a paper, Memory and the amplification of trauma: Child witnesses of the 1990 Iraqi invasion of Kuwait.

Extramural Grants and Fellowships

2007 Council of Private Universities Research Grant, Kuwait

2005-10 Fulbright Senior Specialist

2004 Lecturing/Research Award, Fulbright IIE

2002 Humanities Institute Fellow, Dartmouth College

2000-01 Harry Frank Guggenheim Research Award

2001-02 Harry Frank Guggenheim Research Award

1996-97 Dissertation Year Award, UCLA

1994-95 Dissertation Research Award, Fulbright IIE

1993-1996 Two research Awards from Social Psychiatry, UCLA

Awards

Project Development Award, Rochester Institute of Technology, April 2014

Faculty Professional Development Award, Rochester Institute of Technology, March 2014

2008 Innovative Lecturer Award, Student Government Association, American University of Kuwait

2005 Choice Magazine Outstanding Academic Book Award for Companion to Psychological Anthropology: Modernity and Psychocultural Change

1997 Association for Political and Legal Anthropology Student Essay Prize

Courses