Ahearn, Laura M.
Ph.D., University of Michigan, 1994
Department of Anthropology, School of Arts and Sciences, New Brunswick; Rutgers
Areas of Interest
Gender, Kinship, Agency, and Marriage in Nepal.
Linguistic and Cultural Anthropology, Language and Gender, South Asian Cultures.
Memberships and Professional Service
America Anthropological Association; American Association of University Professors; American Ethnological Society; Association for Feminist Anthropology; Association for Nepal and Himalayan Studies; Social Science History Association; Society for Cultural Anthropology; Society for Linguistic Anthropology.
Laura taking notes during field work in Nepal, circa 2002.
Grants, Honors, and Awards
Rutgers University Leader in Diversity Award, 2006; Faculty of Arts and Sciences Award for Distinguished Contributions to Undergraduate Education, 2005; Rutgers University Board of Trustees Award for Scholarly Excellence, 2004; Edward Sapir Book Prize Honorable Mention for Invitations to Love, 2002; Excellence in Teaching Award, Mortar Board Society, University of South Carolina, 2000; National Endowment for the Humanities Fellowship for University Teachers, 1996-1997; Mellon Foundation Doctoral Dissertation Fellowship, University of Michigan, 1993-1994; National Science Foundation Doctoral Dissertation Improvement Grant, Nepal, 1992-1993; Fulbright-Hays Doctoral Dissertation Research Abroad Fellowship, Nepal, 1992-1993.
Academic Interests and Plans
I am a linguistic and cultural anthropologist who works on issues of gender, kinship, and marriage in Nepal. My most recent project is a book, Invitations to Love: Literacy, Love Letters, and Social Change in Nepal (University of Michigan Press, 2001), which is about the new courtship practice of love letter writing in the Magar village. I am interested in agency, constraints on meaning in Nepali women's songfests, and the changing meanings and values surrounding childbirth in Nepal. Currently, I am working on a linguistic anthropology textbook for Blackwell.