Ph.D. University of California, Berkeley, 1995
132 Aaron Burr Hall
Office hours: W 4:30-6:30 & by appt.
ritual, kinship, social relations, contemporary Indian society, ethnography.
Isabelle Clark-Decès’ research interests are in South Asia, with a focus on the Tamils of South India and Sri Lanka. Her first three books focus on Tamil ritual and the series of conceptual, existential, and theoretical issues it opens up: Religion Against the Self: An Ethnography of Tamil Rituals (as Isabelle Nabokov); No One Cries for the Dead: Tamil Dirges, Rowdy Songs and Graveyard Petitions; and The Encounter Never Ends: A Return to the Field of Tamil Rituals. She has edited a volume of essays that explores the configurations of modernity and globalization in India (A Companion to the Anthropology of India). Her ethnography of close kin marriage in Tamil Nadu contributes to the anthropological interpretation of kinship and social change (The "Right" Spouse: Preferential Marriages in Tamil Nadu). Her most recent research is on individual and social well-being in the Indian state of Karnataka. Currently, she is writing an ethnography of post-war society in Jaffna, Sri Lanka. She teaches courses on India, ritual, kinship, religion, philanthropy and charity and directs the Princeton Program in South Asian Studies.