My research focuses on questions of citizenship and migration, scalar projects, the ethics and politics of sustainability, and processes of semiotic enregisterment.
“Sustainable” welfare in a Norwegian neighborhood
I am interested in the entanglement of two “global forces,” the climate crisis and global migration. While it is now generally accepted that rising sea levels and temperatures and extreme weather patterns will lead to increased migration, less attention has been given to the ways the changing climate affects state policies in the places where these migrants are arriving. My research interrogates the ways that discourses surrounding “sustainability” bring together these two perceived threats to the Norwegian welfare state, through a temporal and spatial politics that shapes everyday life.
My dissertation is based on over 18 months of ethnographic fieldwork in a neighborhood in central Oslo, Norway. It takes the neighborhood as a lens through which to understand the ways that people take up and contest scalar projects as a way to make ethical claims about the future of the Norwegian welfare state.
Language, Race, and Sound
My Masters thesis analyzed the ways the qualia of quiet and noise are used to naturalize racialized differences between migrants and middle-class white Norwegians. A version was published as an article in Language & Communication (2019).
I’m continuing to think about the intersection of language, race, and sound through a project on about the linguistic strategies Zeshan Shakar, author of a bestselling novel about Pakistani-Norwegian teenagers living in Oslo, employs at public readings to negotiate the fine line between giving voice to a stigmatized kind of young person while also not performing stereotypes for majority white Norwegian audiences.
Regional Language Movements in France
Focusing on activism around Occitan-French bilingual signage in Southern France, the project was interested in the changing place of regional languages within the French nation. I published an article on this research in the Journal of Linguistic Anthropology (2019).