Greg Beckett

Greg Beckett


Associate Professor -Sociocultural Anthropology

PhD 2008 (University of Chicago)
Office: Social Science Centre 3409
Tel: 519 661-2111  ext. 85081
E-mail: Twitter: @GregBeckett9


Research Interests

I am a cultural anthropologist who studies crisis, disaster, and trauma from the standpoint of moral experience. I am interested in how people make sense of exceptional events and also in the ethical and political relationships that emerge in and around responses to crisis, especially in forms of humanitarian intervention. My geographic areas of expertise are the Caribbean, specifically Haiti, where I have worked for about fifteen years.

List of Selected Publications

Some of my publications are available at https://uwontario.academia.ed/GregBeckett

2019. There Is No More Haiti: Between Life and Death in Port-au-Prince. Oakland: University of california Press.

2017. The Politics of Disjuncture, Or Freedom from a Caribbean Point of View. Small Axe No 53 21(2):184–92.

2017. The Abolition of All Privilege: Race, Equality, and Freedom in the Work of Anténor Firmin. Critique of Anthropology 37(2):160–78.

2017. A Dog’s Life: Reflections on the Humanitarian Situation in Haiti. American Anthropologist 119(1):35–45.

2014. The Art of Not Governing Port-au-Prince. Social and Economic Studies 63(2): 97–123.

2013. The Ontology of Freedom: The Unthinkable Miracle of Haiti. Journal of Haitian Studies 19(2): 54–74.

2013. Thinking with Others: Savage Thoughts about Anthropology and the West. Small Axe 42: 166–181.

2013. The Politics of Emergency. Reviews in Anthropology 42(2): 85¬–101.

2013. Rethinking the Haitian Crisis. In The Idea of Haiti: History, Development and the Creation of New Narratives, Millery Polyné, ed. University of Minnesota Press, pp. 27–49.

2010. Phantom Power: Notes on Provisionality in Haiti. In Anthropology and Global Counterinsurgency. John D. Kelly, Beatrice Jauregui, Sean T. Mitchell, and Jeremy Walton eds. Chicago: University of Chicago Press, pp. 39-51.

2004. Master of the Wood: Moral Authority and Political Imaginaries in Haiti. PoLAR: The Political and Legal Anthropology Review. 27(2): 1–19.

Teaching and Graduate Supervision

In Fall 2019, I will be teaching the following courses:

  • 2277F Anthropology of Disasters
  • 3223F Doing Fieldwork in Sociocultural Anthropology
  • 1025G Introduction to Sociolcultural and Linguistic Anthropology
  • 4409G/9225B Anthropology of Morality and Ethics 

My areas of teaching interest also include the following: the anthropology of ethics; the anthropology of crisis and disaster, political anthropology, the Caribbean and the Atlantic World, ethnography and storytelling, trauma, and social theory.