1. University of Virginia
  2. Arts & Sciences

Emeriti Faculty

Kaut

I am retired from active participation in the daily doings of the department. I have been spending most of my time since 1993 living on the White Mountain Apache Reservation (Fort Apache) in central eastern Arizona. I am associated with the tribal adult education center there as a consultant and still maintain a living site with research and writing facilities on a quarter acre lot provided by tribe. When I am there I am available via E-mail on a daily basis.

McKinnon

As a cultural anthropologist, my research and writing have long been focused on issues relating to kinship, marriage, and gender. I am fascinated by their cross-cultural and historical diversity, by their centrality in the structures and dynamics of hierarchy and equality, and by the way scientific texts have transformed their culturally specific manifestations into universal facts of nature.

Metcalf

Before coming to the United States, I worked at the Universities of Singapore and Papua New Guinea, and conducted research in both of those countries. But most of what I now write and teach is motivated by the experience of living in longhouse communities in Borneo in the 1970's. It was the beginning of a period of rapid change; most obviously, the integrity of traditional world views were challenged by conversion to Christianity. Thinking about that led me into a century-old tradition of comparative religion in anthropology, which places emphasis on ritual.

Sapir

West African languages, folklore and culture. My initial field work was with the language and folklore of the Kujamaat Jóola of Southern Sénégal. Subsequent field work investigated their social organization and social symbolism. Language, folklore and social symbolism center on symbolism in general and inform my broader theoretical interests, the central place of symbolism in human thought.

Ross

I consider teaching, advising and mentoring students in anthropology and linguistics to be central to my life. I particularly enjoy introducing students to new ideas and concepts and showing them the relevance of anthropological and linguistic ideas and approaches to other aspects of their lives. Perhaps this is a result of my own experience and training. Starting out as an archeology student at the University of Nebraska, I was quickly immersed in a four-fields approach to anthropology by an exciting teaching staff.

Seneviratne

My early research interests were fashioned by three factors in the context of my growing up in Sri Lanka. First, Buddhist rituals were all around me, and I was stimulated to explore the meaning of these rituals. Second, Sri Lanka was going through radical social change. Third, Sri Lanka was groping for an identity and economic security after its recent emergence from British colonial domination. My published work reflects these contextual factors as well as my belief that the utility of traditional sociological theory is by no means exhausted.

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