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Grant number like: FT-264924-19

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Joanna Davidson
Boston University (Boston, MA 02215-1300)
Singing Wives and Silent Widows: An Ethnographic Study of Marriage in West Africa

Ethnographic research on women in rural West Africa to document and analyze the public songs of married women leading to a monograph on marriage and gendered behavior in a non-Western context.

Something is happening to marriage around the world, and although scholars have long been preoccupied with marital institutions and dynamics we are now scrambling to catch up to a plethora of new trends. My project adds novel insights to this flourishing field by focusing on the perplexing unspeakability of Jola widows in West Africa alongside the din of wives who collectively sing about their marital woes. These phenomena provide fertile ethnographic ground for re-thinking enduring humanistic concerns with the relationship between economy and affect, materiality and emotion, and instrumentality and intimacy

[Grant products]

Project fields:
African Studies; Cultural Anthropology; Gender Studies

Summer Stipends

Research Programs

$6,000 (approved)
$6,000 (awarded)

Grant period:
6/10/2019 – 8/10/2019