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Anthropology Professor Robert Weller wins Gugenheim

Rob Weller, BU China anthropologist, recipient of 2013 Guggenheim Fellowship

Robert Weller, Chair of the BU Department of Anthropology, and an expert in Chinese and Taiwanese anthropology, is the recipient of a prestigious Guggenheim Fellowship for 2013. Guggenheim Fellowships are intended for men and women who have already demonstrated exceptional capacity for productive scholarship or exceptional creative ability in the arts. The Foundation receives between 3,500 and 4,000 applications each year, and approximately 200 Fellowships are awarded each year.

Weller’s project as a Guggenheim Fellow grows in part out of theoretical work done over the past few years with Adam Seligman, and explored most recently in Rethinking Pluralism (2012). That book examines how it can be possible to recognize fundamental differences between one group and another, yet still interact peacefully across the boundary. The book looks especially at the ways in which the ambiguities inherent to all boundaries can be thought about and moves away from the assumption that drawing ever clearer lines of categorization is the only or the best answer. His new project explores, challenges, and further develops those ideas more empirically in eastern China. Based in Nanjing, he will focus on the ability to tolerate ambiguity and the formal acceptance of both religious and political conventions over interpretation—of ritual and shared experience over policy and theology.

For more information see: http://www.gf.org/fellows/17515-robert-weller

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