"I have long been captivated with the presence of sound in people's senses of self, of space, and of place. I am especially interested in the rhythms of everyday life and the rich diversity with which people around the world employ sound to bring bodies to move in sync; be it on the dance floor, to performing religious and civic rituals, to marching in mass political demonstrations. My research in Guantánamo, Cuba, examines the strong relationships between music making, place, and cultural identities. One of the insights of this research is that social and political movements succeed to the extent that they affectively articulate individual and collective perceptions of how the world is and how it might be."
Years at Knox: 2012 to present
Ph.D., Cultural Anthropology/Ethnomusicology, 2009, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.
M.A., Spanish, 1997, Winthrop University.
B.A., Spanish, 1992, College of Charleston.
Cultural anthropology, Latin America and the Caribbean, music making and cultural nationalisms, transnational musical production, social revolutionary processes, anthropology of the senses, movement and body techniques, sound culture studies, culture and ecology.
Graduate Student Fellowship, Illinois Program for Research in the Humanities, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, Urbana, Illinois, 2007-2008.
Dimitri B. Shimkin Graduate Research Award, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, Urbana, Illinois, 2006.
Tinker Foundation Field Research Grant Recipient, Center for Latin American and Caribbean Studies, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, Urbana, Illinois, 2003 and 2005.
Book Review of Vodou Nation: Haitian Art Music and Cultural Nationalism, by Michael Largey. American Ethnologist 39: 656-658.
Book Review of Creolizing Contradance in the Caribbean, edited by Peter Manuel. Philadelphia Temple University Press, 2009, CENTRO: Journal of the Center for Puerto Rican Studies, 2010.
Book Review of Arsenio Rodriguez and the Transnational Flows of Latin Popular Music, by David Garcia. Philadelphia, Temple University Press, 2006. World of Music 50.20: (2008.)
"Explorations of Senses of Sound and Place at Knox College: Knox Soundscape Project." 88th Annual Central States Anthropological Society, Iowa City, Iowa, 2011.
"To Play Montuno You Don't Need Paper: Sound, the Senses, and Sabor in Cuban Popular Music." 102nd Annual Meeting of the American Anthropological Association (AAA,) New Orleans, Louisiana, 2010.
"Musical (Trans)Nationalisms: From Cuban Son to Urban Salsa," 10th Annual Transnational Workshop "Neoliberalism and Cities in Current Times", Urbana, Illinois, April 2009.
"Performing the Political." 86th Annual Meeting of the Central States Anthropological Society, Urbana, Illinois, 2009.
"Pronto voy a regresar para gozar con mi gente: Some Thoughts on the Interrelationships of Migration and Cuban Music Making." Migration Studies Group at the University of Illinois, Urbana, Illinois, 2007.
"Para Tocar Montuno No Hace Falta Papél: Sound, Sensibility, and Sabor." Latin American Studies Association International Congress (LASA), Montreal, Canada, 2007.
"A Social History of the Guajira Guantanamera." Latin American Studies Association International Congress (LASA), Minnesota State University, Mankato, Minnesota, 2006.
"Controversia Cubana: expressive culture, politics, and the contemporary performance of punto guajiro," Latin American Studies Association International Congress (LASA) San Juan, Puerto Rico, March 2006.
Campus & Community Involvement
Member, Sustainability Task Force.
Michael Cooke and Ritu Gyawali are chosen for the Benjamin A. Gilman International Scholarship program, which awards up to $5,000 for costs related to studying abroad.
John Podesta, a Knox College graduate and member of the Board of Trustees, will join the White House staff as a senior counselor to President Barack Obama, according to media reports.
Music and writing students collaborated and performed with renowned bassist and composer Ben Allison, as jazz fans got a live, free preview of Allison's new album, during Knox's inaugural Mirza Jazz Residency.