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Naomi Leite
Reader in Anthropology SOAS, University of LondonDepartment of Anthropology

Naomi Leite is a Reader in Anthropology at SOAS, University of London. A psychological and cultural anthropologist, her work focuses on identity, identification, belonging, and exclusion across domains and scales of sociality, from the interpersonal to the institutional to the most abstractly imagined. She has a strong interest in cultural logics and modes of reasoning, lived experience, and the social, cultural, and intersubjective constitution of self, especially in relation to prevailing systems of social classification. Much of her work has explored these themes in tourism encounters, a context ripe for alternative expressions of self and enactments of transcultural (dis)identification. All of these topics come together in her first book, Unorthodox Kin: Portuguese Marranos and the Global Search for Belonging (University of California Press, 2017), winner of the 2018 Stirling Prize for Best Publication in Psychological Anthropology. She also co-edited The Ethnography of Tourism (Rowman and Littlefield, 2019) and is the winner of the Bruner Book Prize, Anthropology of Tourism Interest Group, American Anthropological Association, 2020.

Her new research, a comparative project involving sites in three countries, turns to informal sociality, belonging, and exclusion in tacitly or explicitly “inclusive” institutions—therapeutic communities, counterextremist youth programs, retreat centers—with an eye to differing models, experiences, and outcomes of “inclusion,” as well as institutional and interpersonal mechanisms that foster or hinder its fruition. Dr. Leite also has ongoing projects in the areas of rationality and metacognition; cultural logics and enactments of kinship and peoplehood; and intersubjectivity and vulnerability in ethnographic practice.


Photo of Natashe Lemos Dekker
Natashe Lemos Dekker
Anthropologist (PhD) Leiden UniversityInstitute of Cultural Anthropology and Development Sociology

Dr. Natashe Lemos Dekker is an anthropologist based at the University of Amsterdam. Her work focuses on death and dying, end-of-life care, loss, and aging, and dynamics of time and future-making. She was awarded her PhD from the University of Amsterdam, in which she studied time and value at the end of life with dementia in the Netherlands. Her work has been published in the Journal of the Royal Anthropological Institute, Death Studies, and Culture, Medicine and Psychiatry, among others. She was a visiting scholar at the University of California Los Angeles (UCLA) and the Université de Montréal and was a board member of the Medical Anthropology Europe Network (2017-2023). Currently, she is the PI of the Dutch Research Council funded project ‘Grief Politics: COVID-19-related loss and collective action in Brazil.’

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Kenneth William Little
Associate Professor York University – Faculty of Liberal Arts and Professional StudiesDepartment of Anthropology

Kenneth Little is an Associate Professor of Anthropology in the Department of Anthropology at York University, Toronto. Most generally his research focuses on the critical turn in anthropology to affect, social creativity, and performativity. Currently, he is conducting long-term research on the rise of the tourist state in Belize. His work attends to how tourism becomes a significant modality through which contemporary everyday life in Belize is organized and how tourist encounters open imaginative spaces that stimulate new subject productions, highlight new aspects of social relations and interactions with nature that actively ensure new “fantasies of becoming.” He is also committed to developing a generative poetics of tourism encounter that understands writing as inseparable from our engagement in the world; writing ethnography as an occurant art. Favouring a non-representationalist, assemblages, productivist-materialist approach to critical tourism studies, as a way of augmenting a dialectical, representationalist one, means developing ethnographic work in tourism studies that is meant to engage the anthropology of tourism with a literature that it mostly doesn’t think with, namely critical post-humanist debates concerned with how encounters “matter” and how matter is thought and constituted through entanglements, refrains, knots, and figures of human and non-human bodies, affects, objects, and practices. He most recently completed a book on this subject entitled On the Nervous Edge of an Impossible Paradise: Affect, Tourism, Belize, Berghahn Books 2020.

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John Loewenthal
Lecturer in Education Keele UniversityENPA Co-Convenor




John Loewenthal is an anthropologist with experience based at universities in the UK, USA, and Mexico. His PhD thesis was entitled, ‘Aspirations of university graduates: an ethnography in New York and Los Angeles’. His research interests include aspirations, searches for meaning, higher education students, the life course, lifelong learning, existential anthropology, and counselling and psychotherapy. John is currently studying for a Diploma in Relational Counselling and is engaged in a therapy placement in London, where he lives.

Link to work profile is here:

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Joseph Long
Research and Policy Lead Scottish Autism




Joe Long leads a programme of applied research in services for autistic people in Scotland. His research concerns the ways that autism knowledge is generated and mobilized, and how clinical, policy, and practice discourses shape the experience of autistic people. Joe is committed to collaborative ethnography that meaningfully involves supported autistic people and support practitioners. He received his Ph.D. in Anthropology from the University of Aberdeen and was previously a research fellow at the Max Planck Institute for Social Anthropology.

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Agita Lūse
Assistant Professor /Acting Researcher Riga Stradiņš UniversityMSc program in Social Anthropology, Faculty of Communication

Agita Lūse holds a Ph.D. from University of Bristol and specializes in medical and psychiatric anthropology. She has conducted research on such topics as westernization of Latvian psychiatry, patient advocacy organizations, the social aspects of psycho-social ill health and disability as well as popular genealogical practices and history of ideas. Among her publications are more than 50 scholarly papers. Agita has been teaching, among others, MSc-level courses “Disability: representations, experience, and public policy” and “Understanding madness”.

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