Sodikoff, Genese

Genese Marie Sodikoff earned her PhD in Anthropology at the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor.  Her research has explored the political economy of biodiversity loss, conservation, and restoration. She has over twenty years’ experience conducting ethnographic and historical research on low-wage labor and rain forest conservation in Madagascar, and on the biotic and cultural extinction. Her books include Forest and Labor in Madagascar: From Colonial Concession to Global Biosphere (Indiana University Press 2012) and The Anthropology of Extinction: Essays on Culture and Species Death (Indiana University Press 2012).  In 2015, she was awarded a Mellon New Directions Fellowship to pursue training in epidemiology, which informs her current ethnographic and historical research on zoonotic disease outbreaks in Madagascar.
Her new project blends perspectives of medical and environmental anthropology to investigate the problem of zoonosis, disease that jumps from animal species to humans, in urban and rural regions of Madagascar. She is concentrating on recent outbreaks of bubonic and pneumonic plague in a rural district in the central highlands. Drawing on multispecies ethnography and epidemiology, she is examining the risky human-animal interactions that contribute to disease communicability within the larger context of inefficient health and hygiene services, unequal access to services and resources, and environmental degradation. 
Dr. Sodikoff is a Core Member of the Master’s Program in Peace and Conflict Studies and the Division of Global Affairs at Rutgers-Newark, as well as an Associate Member of the Department of Anthropology at Rutgers-New Brunswick. She is the incoming Director of the Center for African Studies at Rutgers, and Research Manager of the “Environmental Challenges and Solutions” program at Rutgers’ Center for the Study of Emerging Threats in the 21st Century (ET21).  She teaches a graduate course in Environmental Conflict and undergraduate courses in Medical Anthropology, Environmental Anthropology, Human-Animal Relations, the Anthropology of Africa, and Introduction to Cultural Anthropology.
Faculty Type: 
Sociology and Anthropology
English, French, Malagasy
Madagascar, Indian Ocean, USA
Associate Professor of Anthropology; Director, The Center for African Studies
Ph.D., University of Michigan, Ann Arbor
(973) 353-5331
Office Location: 
616 Hill Hall
Areas of Specialization: 
Medical anthropology, political ecology, zoonosis, extinction, biodiversity conservation, human-animal relations, Africa, Madagascar

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