Don Kulick

Don Kulick is Distinguished University Professor of Anthropology at Uppsala University and head of the ENGAGING VULNERABILITY research program.

His research and writing cover a variety of topics and disciplines, including sociolinguistics, gender and sexuality studies, disability studies and queer theory. He has published on language socialization, language death, indigenous forms of Christianity, sex work and prostitution, reflexive epistemology, fat studies, and animal studies. He has conducted extensive anthropological fieldwork in Papua New Guinea, Brazil, and Scandinavia. He has received numerous grants and honors, including an NEH Fellowship, an A. W. Mellon Foundation Guest Professorship, and a Guggenheim Fellowship.

His books in English include Language Shift and Cultural Reproduction: socialization, self, and synchronism in a Papua New Guinean village (Cambridge U Press, 1992); Travesti: sex, gender and culture among Brazilian transgendered prostitutes (Chicago U Press, 1998); Language and Sexuality (Cambridge U Press, 2003, with Deborah Cameron); and Loneliness and Its Opposite: sex, disability and the ethics of engagement (Duke U Press, 2015, with Jens Rydström).

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Hugh Beach


Hugh Beach

Hugh Beach is Professor of Ethnology, particularly non-European, at the Department of Cultural Anthropology and Ethnology.

He has published widely on Saami (Lapp) and Circumpolar Studies, pastoralism, global environmentalism, indigenous rights, and the effects of Chernobyl disaster. His books include Post-Soviet Transformations: Politics of Ethnicity and Resource Use in Russia (edited with Dmitri Funk & Lennard Sillanpää, Uppsala, 2009), A Year in Lappland: guest of the reindeer herders (U of Washington Press, 2001) and Polar Peoples: self-determination and development (Minority Rights Group, 1994).

His current research focuses on problems that arise when the preservation of nature clashes with the rights of indigenous people. He has conducted fieldwork at all four of the world’s so-called ”mixed” World Heritage Sites (Laponia in Sweden, Kakadu and Uluru-Kata Tjuta in Australia, and Tongariro in New Zealand). His research analyzes the conflicts, misunderstandings, impasses – and possibilities – that arise when representatives for nature conservation negotiate with representatives for the protection of indigenous cultures.

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Sverker Finnström

Sverker Finnström, debattör, antropolog och forskar Foto. Mikael Wallerstedt

Sverker Finnström
Photo by Mikael Wallerstedt

Sverker Finnström is Associate Professor in Cultural Anthropology at Uppsala University.

Finnström has written on existential anthropology and war based on his long-term ethnographic engagement with in northern Uganda and connected places. He was the chair of the Swedish Anthropological Association from 2013 to 2015.

He has been developing an analytical framework that can advance the understanding of the global travels of war. Publications related to this focus include the award-winning monograph Living with Bad Surroundings (Duke U Press, 2008) and the anthology Virtual War and Magical Death (Duke U Press, 2013, with Neil L. Whitehead).

Together with Hugh Beach, he will chart vulnerability as a quality that is differentially distributed and examine what this mean in terms of ethical engagement and practical response. Finnström is also interested in theoretical approaches to vulnerability that can help complement wide-spread yet one-dimensional and damaging stories of suffering and loss.

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Maria Karlsson

Maria Karlsson

Maria Karlsson

Maria Karlsson is a Ph.D in Literary Studies and a senior lecturer in Rhetoric at the Department of Literature, Uppsala University.

Karlsson’s research interests are narration, reading, popular culture/melodrama and last turn-of-the century writers. She has also been studying fan mail, loneliness, art scandals and Swedish crime fiction. Her works use perspectives of gender and intersectionality and she was for five years a researcher at The Centre for Gender Research, Uppsala University.

Karlsson’s recent articles are centered on the thousands of letters from the public to the author Selma Lagerlöf (1858–1940). Within EV Karlsson is analyzing how the many help seekers in the letter collection use their vulnerability.

In addition and together with media researcher Mats Hyvönen (EV), Karlsson investigates the way vulnerability is used, framed and narrated in radio documentaries.

Karlsson also collaborates with Måns Wrange, artist and professor of art, Stockholm University. They examine provocative art as a target for politicians and – as art scandals – commercial media.

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Sharon Rider


Sharon Rider

Sharon Rider is Professor in Logic and Metaphysics at Uppsala University.

Rider’s work can be characterized as belonging to philosophical anthropology, broadly construed. Most recently, she has focused on social philosophy and the philosophy of education, for example, in Transformations in Research, Higher Education and the Academic Market: The Breakdown of Scientific Thought, eds. Sharon Rider, Ylva Hasselberg, Alexandra Waluszewski (Springer 2013). Rider is currently head of a project funded by the Swedish Research Council (VR, 2014-2016) concerning aims, ideals and values in education (“What should a Swede know?). She is series editor, together with Michael Peters, for Evaluating Education: Normative Systems and Institutional Practices (Springer).

Her work within the program will be centered around issues relating to autonomy and responsibility and the question of how these might be conceptualized in ways that do not rely on conventional notions of rational agency. Together with Mats Rosengren, she will examine ideas about subjectivity and intersubjectivity in relation to questions concerning the theory, meaning and practice of education and enculturation.

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Mats Rosengren


Mats Rosengren

Mats Rosengren holds the chair of Rhetoric in the Department of Literature at Uppsala University.

Rosengren has written several books on the epistemology of rhetoric, is a member of the editorial board of Glänta and of the board of the Swedish Ernst Cassirer Society. He is also a translator, mainly of French philosophy, and an editor, most notably of the now completed Logos/Pathos series at Glänta Produktion

His current research addresses the construction, institutionalization and politics of social meaning, from a rhetorical-philosophical-anthropological perspective. In this context he has written on Cornelius Castoriadis, Ernst Cassirer as well as on the discovery of Paleolithic cave art and the development of the discipline cave ‘art studies’, for example in his book Cave Art, Perception and Knowledge (Palgrave Macmillan 2012).

Together with Sharon Rider, he will direct research on issues relating to autonomy and responsibility.

Read more about Mats Rosengren.