is an American anthropologist who has taught at Yale, at Johns Hopkins, where he was founding chair of the Department of Anthropology, and at William & Mary, as well as at the Federal University of Bahia and several universities in Paris. He is the author, co-author, or editor of twenty-two books, many of which have won international prizes. A number have focused on Suriname and Guyane, such as The Guiana Maroons, First-Time, To Slay the Hydra, Alabi’s World, Stedman’s Surinam, Maroon Arts, Two Evenings in Saramaka, On the Mall, Les Marrons, Equatoria, The Root of Roots, and Travels with Tooy: History, Memory, and the African American Imagination. Several address other aspects of the African Diaspora, such as The Birth of African-American Culture, Maroon Societies: Rebel Slave Communities in the Americas and Romare Bearden: The Caribbean Dimension. Together with Sally Price, he has also written a novel about art forgery in Guyane, Enigma Variations. Recently, he has been involved in human rights work on behalf of the Saamaka People—see Rainforest Warriors: Human Rights on Trial and a just-published Saamakatongo version of First-Time called Fesiten. In addition to a book and several articles translated into Portuguese, he has had books translated into Dutch, French, German, and Spanish. With strong ties to the Netherlands, he serves as a book review editor for the New West Indian Guide (published in Leiden) and is an Honorary Member of the Royal Netherlands Institute of Southeast Asian and Caribbean Studies. For more details, see
H.U.E. Thoden van Velzen
studied anthropology at the University of Amsterdam. In 1961-1962 he, and his wife Wilhelmina van Wetering, conducted fieldwork in Ndyuka Maroon villages along the Tapanahoni River. From 1966 to 1969 he was part of a research team of the Africa Studies Centre (Leyden) working in Tanzania. Between 1971 and 1991 he held the chair of cultural anthropology at the University of Utrecht. From 1991 to 1999 he was a professor of cultural anthropology at the Amsterdam School for Social Science Research. From 1991 to the present he is a member of the Royal Academy of Sciences of The Netherlands. Among his main works are The Great Father and the Danger (1988), In the Shadow of the Oracle (2004), Een Zwarte Vrijstaat in Suriname: De Okaanse Samenleving in de 19e en 20e Eeuw (2013) and Een Zwarte Vrijstaat in Suriname: De Okaanse Samenleving in de 18e Eeuw (2011), the first three of those with Wilhelmina van Wetering.
is Professor of Linguistics at University College Dublin, Dublin Ireland where she teaches modules on various aspects of language in its social context and language contact. She is also member of the Humanities Institute of Ireland and chercheur-enseignant of the French Research Group SeDyL/celia-cnrs (UMR8133). Her research focuses on issues of language variation and change and the role of language contact in language variation. Most recently she has been engaged in research projects and published on the role of contact-induced variation in language documentation and the negotiation of social identities through language in French Guiana and Suriname. Her other research interests are migration and language in Ireland, language and education and historical language contact. Empirically, her work focuses on the creole languages of Suriname and French Guiana, the Gbe languages (Benin, Togo) and varieties of English worldwide. Besides numerous publications on historical, descriptive and sociolinguistic aspects of Maroon languages, she published with Isabelle Léglise Exploring Language in a Multilingual Context (2013).
is a Ph.D. in history and civilization at the École des Hautes Études en Sciences. He is lecturer at the Université des Antilles (dplsh de Saint-Claude en Guadeloupe). He is author of Le monde des Marrons du Maroni en Guyane 1772-1860 (2004), Les marrons Boni de Guyane (2013), and Le monde des Marrons du Maroni en Guyane (editor, 2004), and editor (with APFOM) of Sociétés marronnes des Amériques, Actes du colloque, Saint-Laurent-du-Maroni, Guyane (2015).
has a PhD. in the École des Hautes Etudes en Sciences Sociales and has worked for decades in the Franck Joly Hospital Center of Western Guiana, where she combined medical work with anthropological research. She has published Money Magic in A Modernizing Maroon Society (1985) and La Représentation du Corps chez les Noirs Marrons Ndjuka (1992) and a number of articles. Currently she educates inter-cultural staffs in the same hospital twice a year, teaches cultural mediation courses in French Guiana and works on the material about the maroons gathered in the last thirty years.
is a post-doctoral Fellow at the Ecole des Hautes Etudes en Sciences Sociales in Paris (Labex Tepsis). She defended her PhD thesis at the University Paris Descartes in 2017, entitled: ‘Osu’, ‘shacks’ and ‘projects’. Redrawing the boundaries of the city in Soolan (Saint-Laurent-du-Maroni, French Guiana). She has recently published: “La blancheur bakaa, une majorité bien spécifique : race, classe et ethnicité dans les situations de démolition à Saint-Laurent-du-Maroni, Guyane”, Asylon(s).Digitales 15.
has a Ph.D. in Anthropology at the University of Michigan. His research focuses on the semiotic comparison of Ndyuka and Indo-Surinamese Guyanese ritual, focusing particularly on divination, oratory and materiality. He engages interactional analysis to explore how forms of speech performance are generative of categories of sociality—particularly kinship, ethnicity, labor and gender. His work seeks to understand how spirit possession has been a key technology for elaborating alternative ethical/cosmological worlds in the post-slavery/indenture Guianas.
Rogério Brittes W. Pires
has a Ph.D in Social Anthropology at Museu Nacional, Federal University of Rio de Janeiro (UFRJ) and was a CAPES junior post-doctoral fellow at the Federal University of Minas Gerais (UFMG). His Ph.D dissertation is an ethnography about funerary rites among the Saamaka of Upper Suriname, and since 2015 he has done research on the topics of war and land rights among the Guiana Maroons. Before that, he has written a Master’s thesis on the anthropological concept of fetish. He is the author of more than ten articles and book chapters on themes ranging from sexuality and religion to politics and economy.
Olívia Maria Gomes da Cunha
is Associate Professor of Anthropology, at the Museu Nacional, Federal University of Rio de Janeiro. Her Ph.D. dissertation on vagrancy and identification science in Rio de Janeiro in the early 20th century was awarded and published by Arquivo Nacional in 2002. In 2002 she received a John Simon Guggenheim Foundation fellowhip. She was a postdoctoral fellow at Harvard University (1999-2000), visiting-professor at the New York University (2006-2007), the University of Amsterdam (2017), and Tinker Visiting-Professor at the University of Chicago (2018). Her research for Guggenheim resulted in a forthcoming book on ethnography, archives, and artifacs of knowledge in Cuba, Brazil and US. She has published on postemancipation and social movements in Brazil and Cuba, and her current research is about art, creativity, and other cultural and political transformations among the maroon Cottica Ndyuka in Moengo, Eastern Suriname, after the late 1980s civil war.
is Assistant Professor of Music at Williams College. Her research focuses on music and dance in the African Diaspora and West Africa, with a specialization in the traditional genres of the Suriname Maroons. Her primary interests include performance-educational strategies in bridging cultural divides, music/dance interconnections, and the uses of music, dance, and related social discourses in navigating broader systems of power. Campbell received her M.M. from Bowling Green State University and her Ph.D. from Harvard University. Her first manuscript, The Cultural Work: Maroon Performance in Paramaribo, Suriname is forthcoming.
is Research Associate in the Department of Anthropology at the Smithsonian Institution and Visiting Professor at the University of Colorado at Boulder. An anthropologist and ethnomusicologist, he has carried out fieldwork in various parts of the Caribbean and in West Africa. He has published widely on history, language, music, and the politics of culture in the Caribbean. One of his special interests is Maroon peoples of the Americas. He has carried out long-term fieldwork among two such peoples, the Moore Town Maroons of Jamaica and the Aluku (Boni) of French Guiana and Suriname, and has published numerous articles and book chapters based on this research. His book, True-Born Maroons (University Press of Florida, 2005)—a study of Jamaican Maroon oral narratives based on fieldwork spanning nearly three decades—won the American Historical Association’s Wesley-Logan Prize. He is also co-author with Peter Manuel and Michael Largey of Caribbean Currents: Caribbean Music from Rumba to Reggae (Temple University Press, 1995, 2006). His most recent book (co-authored with Jerome Handler) is Enacting Power: The Criminalization of Obeah in the Anglophone Caribbean, 1760-2011 (University of the West Indies Press, 2012). He is currently at work on a book probing the complex cultural milieus from which the urban popular music of Jamaica (from ska through rocksteady, reggae, and dancehall) emerged. Centering on in-depth conversations with the music’s creators, research for the book was supported in part by a Guggenheim Fellowship.
is an associate professor at the Centre for Urban Studies and the Department of Human Geography, Planning and International Development Studies at the University of Amsterdam. She previously held teaching and research positions at Leiden University, the University of the West Indies, and the Royal Netherlands Institute of Southeast Asian and Caribbean Studies (kitlv). Her anthropological research focuses primarily on intersections of the urban and the political, and includes an interest in topics such as popular culture, environmental pollution, and organized crime. She has conducted extensive anthropological fieldwork on these and other topics in Jamaica, Curaçao and Suriname. She is currently leading a major research program on public-private security assemblages in Kingston, Jerusalem, Miami, Nairobi and Recife, studying how urban governance changes through hybrid forms of security provision.
is an American anthropologist who has taught at several universities in the United States (e.g., Stanford, Princeton, and William & Mary), as well as the Federal University of Bahia (Brazil) and the Sorbonne in Paris. She is the author, co-author, or co-editor of fifteen books. A number of these have focused on Suriname and French Guiana, such as Co-Wives and Calabashes, Maroon Arts: Cultural Vitality in the African Diaspora, Two Evenings in Saramaka, On the Mall, Les Marrons, and Equatoria. Several address other aspects of the African Diaspora, such as Caribbean Contours and Romare Bearden: The Caribbean Dimension. Together with Richard Price, she has also written a novel about art forgery, Enigma Variations. But she is best known for her critical studies of the place of “primitive art” in the imaginaire of Western viewers: Paris Primitive: Jacques Chirac’s Museum on the Quai Branly and Primitive Art in Civilized Places. In addition to the Brazilian edition of this last (Arte primitiva em centros civilizados, Editora ufrj), she has had books translated into Dutch, French, German, Italian, and Spanish. With strong ties to the Netherlands, she serves as a book review editor for the New West Indian Guide (published in Leiden) and is an Honorary Member of the Royal Netherlands Institute of Southeast Asian and Caribbean Studies and a member of the Royal Dutch Academy of Arts and Sciences. For more details, see