Key Words: Chinese infrastructure development, Caribbean anthropology, racial/ethnic identity, transnationalism, diaspora, migration, nationalism, political economy, postcolonial theory, community organizations/associations, critical geography, geographic information systems, critical pedagogy
I am an Assistant Professor of Cultural Anthropology in the Anthropology and Middle Eastern Studies department at Mississippi State University. My research is attuned to questions of racial/ethnic formation, transnationalism, diaspora, nationalism, and political economy. In my work I explore how legacies of colonialism, Afro-Asian intimacies, and the complex histories of racialization in black majority Caribbean contexts shape the contours of PRC (People’s Republic of China) expansion. While trained as an anthropologist, I am committed to applying interdisciplinary methodologies and theories and often incorporate my training in postcolonial theory, black studies, geography and Geographic Information Systems in my work.
My book project, Tracing China in the Black Post-Colonial State, utilizes ethnography, historical analysis, and postcolonial theory to examine how colonially mediated ideas of race and identity are reconstituted in conflicts engendered by the extension of the Belt and Road Initiative (BRI-China’s re-construction of the silk route) into Jamaica and the broader Caribbean. My analysis centers on multi-racial Chinese Jamaican community organizations as they simultaneously navigate complex ideas of racialization and nation making within Jamaica and racialized conflicts resulting from PRC expansion on the island.
My graduate degree was supported by a Ronald E. McNair Fellowship. My research has been awarded research grants from Fulbright Hays and the Coordinating Council for Women in History. In 2020, I was a Fellow at the Ostrom Workshop in Political Theory and Policy Analysis and am currently a faculty affiliate with the workshop. During the 2022-2023 academic year I completed a Community Engaged Learning Fellowship through the MSU Center for Community Engagement as received a fellowship for the American Anthropological Association to complete the Op-Ed Projects “Write to Change the World” program. At Mississippi State I am an organizer for the Race and Racism Workshop as well as a Faculty Affiliate in the African American Studies Program.
- PI, Decolonial Field school Project - Starkville, MS
- Director and Founder, Storymapping and Sociospatial Innovation Collaboratory
- Co-PI for the Mississippi Missing and Unidentified Persons Repository
- Latin America and Caribbean Editor: The People’s Map of Global China
- Researcher, Mississippi Crime and Justice Unit