SIEF Board 2013

At SIEF's general assembly (Tartu, July 2, 2013) the following members were elected to the Executive Board:

+ Valdimar Hafstein, Iceland (1st term, President)
Valdimar Hafstein

Associate Professor of Folklore/Ethnology at the University of Iceland 2005-

Born in 1972, Valdimar received his Ph.D. in 2004 from the University of California, Berkeley. He was a research fellow at New York University in 2005-2006, a visiting professor at Berkeley in 2008 and has also taught at the Georg-August Universität, Göttingen, at Edinburgh University, and at the Icelandic Academy for the Arts.

Valdimar chaired the Icelandic Unesco Commission from 2011-2012, and has been a principal investigator in European and Nordic collaborative research projects. He helped found the open access journal Cultural Analysis in 2000 and served as its co-editor until 2007. He serves on the editorial boards for Ethnologia Europaea as well as Cultural Analysis. He has edited three collections of essays in Icelandic and two special journal issues in English and he has published some 20 articles in English and 15 articles in Icelandic. His work has been translated into French,Italian, Portuguese, Croatian, and Danish.

+ Peter Jan Margry, The Netherlands (4th term, Executive Vice-President)
Peter Jan Margry

Peter Jan Margry (1956) holds a Ph.D from the University of Tilburg and works at the Department of Ethnology of the Meertens Institute in Amsterdam, one of the research centers of the Royal Netherlands Academy of Arts and Sciences. He is also chair of the SIEF Working Group on Ethnology of Religion. Apart from SIEF he is a member of the AFS, SSSR, NGG and EASA. He sits in the editorial boards of Ethnologia Europaea, Fieldwork in Religion, Quotidian, and the Yearbook for Liturgical and Ritual Studies

Margry started his training in 1975 with the study of photography at the Rietveld Art Academy in Amsterdam. In 1977 he made a change to the University of Amsterdam where he received in 1983 his MA in History and a post-doctoral degree in Archival Science in 1986. He worked subsequently at the National Archives, the National Audit Office and as an archival inspector (1984-1993). As a consultant 'Cultural Heritage' he had assignments for the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and private organizations in South America and Asia.

In 1993 Margry entered academia and became director of a long term project on Dutch pilgrimage culture at the Meertens Institute and published the four volume set Bedevaartplaatsen in Nederland (1996-2004). Meanwhile, in 2000, he defended his historical-ethnological dissertation on the conflicts between Catholics and Protestants in 19th century Holland over religious rituals in public. In 2000-2001 he was based in Rome and did research on modern network relations regarding apparitional cults in Italy and Europe. During the period 2001- 2004 he was Director of the Department of Ethnology and member of the Management Team of the Meertens Institute. In 2011 was guest professor Religious Life at the University of Leuven in Belgium. In 2013 he was appointed professor of European Ethnology at the University of Amsterdam. Next to this position he works as senior researcher Religious Culture at the Meertens Institute. His research focuses on modern and contemporary religious cultures in Europe, with a specific interest in pilgrimage and sanctity; new forms of religiosity; healing; rituals; he also works on memorialisation, cultural memory and (intangible) heritage. Some recent publications:

  • Peter Jan Margry and Cristina Sánchez Carretero (eds), Grassroots Memorials: The Politics of Memorializing Traumatic Death (New York: Berghahn, 2011)
  • Peter Jan Margry, Civil Religion in Europe: Silent Marches, Pilgrim Treks and Processes of Mediatization. Ethnologia Peter Jan Margry, 'European Religious Fragmentation and the Rise of Civil Religion', in: Ullrich Kockel, Jonas Frykman and Máiréad Nic Craith (eds), A Companion to the Anthropology of Europe (Malden/Oxford: Blackwell Wiley, April 2012) p. 275- 294.
  • Peter Jan Margry, Mary's Reincarnation and the Banality of Salvation: The Millennialist Cultus of the Lady of All Nations/Peoples, in: Numen, International Review for the History of Religions 59 (2012) p. 486-508.

Meertens Institute (

+ Clara Saraiva, Portugal (1st term, Vice-President)
Clara Saraiva

Clara Saraiva, Portugal, Instituto de Investigação Cientifica Tropical and Universidade Nova de Lisboa Clara Saraiva (MA 1988 State University of New York; PhD IICT, Lisbon, 1999) is a senior researcher at the Lisbon Institute for Scientific Tropical Research (Instituto de Investigação Cientifica Tropical- IICT) and an invited professor at the Department of Anthropology, Universidade Nova de Lisboa. She was an invited Professor at Brown University and a Research Fellow at the Watson Institute for International Studies in the same university (USA 2001-2002), and at the Université d´Aix-en-Provence (France-2005).

She has done research both on Portuguese ethnography and African issues. Her main fields of research deal with funerary rituals and conceptions of death (American funeral directors; extensive work on Portuguese death rituals; funerary rituals and religion among the Pepel of Guinea-Bissau, and Cape Verde islands), and, more recently on issues of transnational religions and transnational therapeutic practices among migrants from Guinea-Bissau and Brazil in Lisbon. She is one of the co-founders of the network GIS (Group on Migration and Health), established in Lisbon in January 2006. She was also responsible for the anthropological research project in Luz, a village in southern Portugal entirely moved in 2002-2003 because of the construction of one of the largest dams in Europe. Part of this work included the conception of a museum in the new village, which opened to the public in 2003. Having in mind the present day importance of migration dynamics within Europe, one of my aims is to include in SIEF´s scientific objectives the enlargement and discussion of this (and other related) themes. The other is to participate in the organization of the Lisbon 2011 Congress, provided the proposal is accepted, for which I am also counting on everyone´s participation and ideas.

+ Pertti Anttonen, Finland (1st term)
Pertti Anttonen

Pertti Anttonen is a Senior Lecturer and Adjunct Professor in Folklore Studies at the University of Helsinki and Adjunct Professor in European Ethnology at the University of Jyväskylä.

I have a wide scope of interests in both ethnology and folklore studies, having mostly written on ritual studies, ethnopoetics, nationalism, modernity, and politics of history and heritage. I’ve been a member of SIEF since 2001, and member of the SIEF Working Group ‘Cultural Heritage and Property’ since 2009. I’m also a member of the Editorial Board of Ethnologica Europaea (since 2008), as well as of, Cultural Analysis (since 1999) and Journal of Ethnology and Folkloristics (since 2002) and was a member of the Editorial Board of the Journal of American Folklore between 2005 and 2009. I graduated from the University of Helsinki in 1987 and earned my doctoral degree, from the University of Pennsylvania in 1993. I have served as Professor of Folkloristics or Ethnology in a number of universities in, Finland for altogether six years. I’m currently the leader of the award-winning research community ‘Cultural Meanings and Vernacular, Genres’ based at and funded by the University of Helsinki.

+ Jasna Čapo Žmegac, Croatia (2nd term)
Jasna Čapo Žmegac
Jasna Čapo Žmegac

"I am a senior research fellow at the Institute of Ethnology and Folklore Research in Zagreb and adjunct professor at the University of Zagreb. My background is in ethnology, cultural anthropology, demography and French language and literature. I studied at the University of Zagreb (BA) and University of California at Berkeley (MA and PhD). I was a post-doctoral fellow in Strasbourg and Vienna, and a Humboldt Fellow in Munich and Berlin. I have lead or participated in several national and international research projects. I am a co-editor of Narodna umjetnost: the Croatian journal of ethnology and folklore research. I also serve on editorial boards of Ethnologia Balkanica, Traditiones and Academica Balkanica.

My research interests range from family history, popular religiosity and ritual to anthropology of migration, especially forced and labour migration. My recent publications include the book Strangers either way: the lives of Croatian refugees in their new home (New York, 2007) and a co-edited volume (with C. Voß and K. Roth) Co-ethnic Migrations Compared : Central and Eastern European Contexts (Munich, 2010). I am also a co-editor of Kroatische Ethnologie in den Neunzigern: Ein Reader (with R. Johler, S. Kalapoš and H. Nikitsch, Vienna, 2001), of a volume on the methodology and epistemology of ethnographic fieldwork and another one concerning the issue of space and place in contemporary ethnology/anthropology (both in Croatian). Currently I am working on a special issue of Ethnologie française dedicated to Croatian ethnology. Building bridges between national ethnologies by publishing in various European languages as well as participating in international conferences and transnational projects have been my ways of engaging in European Ethnology in the two decades of professional activity. If elected member of the SIEF Executive board I will continue working in this direction by promoting trans-European research collaboration and academic exchange, relying, among other, on my links established within InASEA (Intern. Assoc. for Southeast European Anthropology). Also, in view of recent threats at cutting the personnel and/or ethnology and folklore departments in various European countries, I see as a major challenge for the SIEF in the next period to find instruments for consolidating the disciplines’ academic and public status."

+ Tine Damsholt, Denmark (1st term)
Tine Damsholt

Tine Damsholt is associate professor at the University of Copenhagen, SAXO Institute, section of European Ethnology, and acting head of the department from august 2011 -2012. She has been evaluating and assessing applications for the Norwegian Research Council and is currently evaluating and assessing applications for Riksbankens Jubilæumsfond, Sweden. She has been teaching, supervising and evaluating on all university levels from first year students to Ph.d.-students. She is part of the editorial board of Ethnologia Scandinavica (since 2001) and Ethnologia Europaea (since 2006).

Her primary field of research is political culture i.e. political rituals, nationalism and patriotic discourses in early modern Denmark-Norway and contemporary Western countries based on cultural history and ethnographic fieldwork. Materiality, landscape, body and gender are recurrent themes in her research and publications. Further she has been involved in several research projects on everyday life and innovation in contemporary Denmark. She has just been appointed PI of the cross-disciplinary project CALM (Counteracting Age-Related loss of Skeletal Muscle Mass) financed by UCPH 2016 funds. Among her recent international publications are: How academic bodies matter – on material-discursive enactments of gender in academia. Ethnologia Scandinavica 2013, in press, ‘Introduction’ (together with Orvar Löfgren) and ‘The Greening of Christianity’ in, ETN, Vol CO2, nr.2010, Ritualizing and Materializing Citizenship. Journal of Ritual Studies. Vol. 23, nr 2, 2009, and The Sound of Citizenship. Ethnologia Europaea. Journal of European Ethnology. 38: 2008

+ Laurent Fournier, France (1st term)
Laurent Sébastien Fournier

Laurent Sébastien Fournier (born in 1974): "Since 2005 I am assistant-professor at the University of Nantes (France), where I teach the sociology of sport and leisure, the anthropology of the body, and the methods of ethnography. I trained as a social anthropologist at the University of Montpellier where I achieved my PhD in 2002 on the revitalization of local festivals in Mediterranean France. After my PhD I became a post-doctoral fellow at the University of Avignon, working on the history of French ethnographic museums. From 2005 onwards, I got interested in the field of sport studies, specially focusing on the relations between sport, anthropology, and cultural heritage. Besides my teachings and research, I served as an expert for the French Ministry of Culture in the implementation of the UNESCO convention on intangible cultural heritage in France. In 2006 I opened a new series of fieldwork investigations in Great Britain, where I studied a set of winter ritual games known as “folkfootball”. Since 2011 I have completed my habilitation and I am a member of the CNRS in Aix-en-Provence (Institut d’Ethnologie Méditerranéenne, Européenne et Comparative – IDEMEC UMR 7307), where I study the diffusion of Scottish sports and games in the USA and where I am currently in charge of an inventory of French traditional games. Due to my interest in Scottish culture, I am since 2012 an honorary fellow of the School for Scottish Studies, University of Edinburgh. Besides the edition of several volumes of conference proceedings and the publication of scientific articles in different European languages, I am the author of two books: La fête en heritage: enjeux patrimonaiux de la sociabilité provençale, Publications de l’Université de Provence, 2005, and Mêlée générale: du jeu de soule au folk-football, Presses de l’Université de Rennes, 2012.

I am involved in several French national professional associations, including the Association Française des Anthropologues, the Société d’Ethnologie Française, and the Association Française d’Ethnologie et d’Anthropologie. I am also the secretary of the FER-Eurethno network, a French speaking network working under the aegis of the Council of Europe. I joined the SIEF at the 2004 meeting in Marseilles and have been active since then in the ‘Ritual Year Working Group’ (as a member of board) and in the ‘Cultural Property Working Group’ (as a member)."

+ Arzu Öztürkmen, Turkey (1st term)
Arzu Öztürkmen

Trained in folklore at Indiana University and the University of Pennsylvania, Arzu Öztürkmen (1965) is currently a Professor in the Department of History at Bogazici University in Istanbul. She is the author of Türkiye’de Folklor ve Milliyetçilik (1998, Folklore and Nationalism in Turkey) and has published articles on the cultural history of Turkey and the Ottoman Empire. Her areas of research include Performance Studies (National Celebrations, Dance History, Verbal Art as Performance, Television Drama), Oral History and History of Emotions (Memory of Ethnic Conflict) with a regional focus on the Black Sea and the Eastern Mediterranean. Since 1994, she serves as Turkey’s National Liason Officer of the ICTM (International Council of Traditional Music). She also served two terms at the founding Council of the IOHA (International Oral History Association) between 1996-2000. Öztürkmen has been a member of the AFS (American Folklore Society) since 1988.

After her folklore studies in the US, Arzu Öztürkmen returned to Turkey, and began teaching at Boğaziçi University. There, she focused on the interdisciplinary connections between folklore and history, trying to contribute to a critical historical writing in Turkey. At Boğaziçi, she was actively involved in organizing meetings on ethnic issues, including Exploration of a Cultural Heritage: History of Turkish-Greek Communities in the Ottoman World (1997); Ottoman Armenians During the Decline of the Empire (2005); Jewish Languages and the Spanish Legacy (2011) and The Alevi-Bektashi Communities in the Ottoman Geography: Historiography, Sources and Paradigms” (2011). Öztürkmen also organized a series of conferences with the ICTM Study Groups on Ethnochoreology (1993, 1998) and Southeastern Europe (2010). One of her priorities at Boğaziçi University, was to introduce international folklorists and oral historians to Turkish audiences. In 2008 she initiated the Pertev Naili Boratav Lecture Series on Folklore and Oral History in memory of Boratav, the founder of folklore studies in Turkey.

In 2006, Arzu Öztürkmen received the Turkish Academy of Science Young Scholars High Achievement Award and Notre Dame de Sion - Prix d’Honneur. She taught at the University of Pennsylvania (1995), New York University (2010, 2012) and was a visiting fellow at the University of Oxford (2005) and at the Fondation Maison des Sciences de l’Homme (2006). She received research grants from the Ford Foundation-Middle East Research Competition (2003), the American Research Institute Post Doctoral Award (1996, 2003), Population Council-Middle East Awards (2000) and Alexander Onassis Foundation (1998).

+ Monique Scheer Germany, (1st term)
Monique Scheer

Assistant Professor, Ludwig-Uhland-Institut für Empirische Kulturwissenschaft, University of Tübingen

My training in historical and cultural anthropology began in Tübingen in 1994, at the Ludwig Uhland Institute, where I received a M.A. in 2000 and a doctorate in 2005, but my path toward this goal was not straight and narrow. I was born and raised in the United States, and my academic education began at Stanford University in California, where I received a bachelor’s degree in history in 1989. My family background and the dream of living in Europe drew me to Germany. I worked at a medical publisher’s in Stuttgart for several years, and have found that this interlude of reading anatomy textbooks and editing surgical manuals continues to inform my intellectual endeavors in interesting and unexpected ways. As a doctoral student and as a post-doc, I worked at the Collaborative Research Center (SFB) on War Experience at the University of Tübingen. From 2008 to 2011, I was a research fellow at the Center for the History of Emotions at the Max Planck Institute for Human Development in Berlin. I came back to Tübingen in October of 2011 as an assistant professor.

For many years, my research has focused heavily on popular religious practices in modern Germany from an historical and ethnographic perspective, for which I was recognized by the Walter de Gruyter prize from the Berlin-Brandenburg Academy of Sciences and Humanities in 2011. I have written on the shifting meanings of black madonnas from the 17th to 20th centuries (see article in the American Historical Review 2002), on Marian apparition cults in postwar Germany (Rosenkranz und Kriegsvisionen, 2006), and the emotionality of Protestant worship in Wilhelmine and present-day Germany (several current articles and English-language book in preparation). These topics intersect with further research interests in the history of knowledge production and circulation, particularly regarding constructions of race and ethnicity in the cultural sciences in Europe (edited volume with Reinhard Johler and Christian Marchetti, Doing Anthropology in Wartime and War Zones, 2010). My most recent emphasis has been on the anthropology and history of emotions, which I have sought to integrate into a theory of practice, bringing not only ‘culture’, but also the encultured, socialized body into the analysis of emotional practices (see my article in History and Theory, 2012). My future research will integrate these perspectives into a more general analysis of religious and ethnic diversity in German society.