We are honored to announce Professor Jonathan Spencer as our keynote speaker at the Third Ireland India Institute Conference on South Asia.
Professor Spencer is the Regius Professor of South Asian Language, Culture and Society at the University of Edinburgh. He has carried out fieldwork in Sri Lanka since the early 1980s, concentrating at first on rural change and local politics, but writing more recently on ethnic conflict, political violence and political non-violence. His current research looks at the fraught boundary between the religious and the political in Sri Lanka and elsewhere, the history of dissent in Sri Lanka, and the consequences of forced dislocation for poor communities in cities in Sri Lanka and Pakistan.
His book on the anthropology of ‘the political’ in South Asia, Anthropology, Politics, and the State appeared in 2007. Checkpoint, Temple, Church and Mosque, written with colleagues from SOAS, Zurich and Peradeniya, on the work of religious organizations in war and peace in Sri Lanka, was published in late 2014.
He is a series editor for Cambridge New Directions in Anthropology, and has been a member of the ESRC Training and Development Board, the 2008 RAE sub-panel for Anthropology and the 2014 REF sub-panel for Anthropology and Development Studies. He is a Fellow of the British Academy, the Royal Society of Edinburgh, and the Academy of Social Sciences.
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