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Doug Falen

Douglas J. Falen

Professor of Anthropology/Chair of Sociology and Anthropology

Phone: 404.471.5499
Office Location: Campbell 122

Academic Degrees

  • B.A., Emory University
  • Ph.D., University of Pennsylvania

Teaching and Scholarly Interests

Professor Falen's research interests include the Republic of Benin, marriage and power, Christianity in Africa, African witchcraft, and the anthropology of deceit. He teaches courses on such topics as cultural anthropology, marriage, world ethnographies, Voodoo, African cultures, research methods, and linguistic anthropology.

Recent Publications

Books and Edited Collections

Articles and Book Chapters

  • 2022. "Universalism and Syncretism in Beninese Vodún" in Spirit Service: Vodún and Vodou in the African Atlantic World, Timothy R. Landry, Eric J. Montgomery & Christian Vannier, editors.  Bloomington: Indiana University Press.
  • 2020. “Alter(native) Magic: Race and the Other in Beninese Witchcraft.” Special issue of Anthropological Forum 30(4):360-376.
  • 2020. “Introduction: Facing the Other.” Special issue of Anthropological Forum 30(4):321-340.
  • 2016. “Vodun, Spiritual Insecurity, and Religious Importation in Benin.” Journal of Religion in Africa 46(4):453-483.
  • 2016 “Culture Summary: Fon.” New Haven: Human Relations Area Files.
  • 2008 “The ‘Other’ Gender?: Reflections on Fieldwork in Benin.” Men and Masculinities 11(2):164-173.
  • 2008 (with David Berliner) “Introduction to Special Section on Men Doing Anthropology of Women.” Men and Masculinities 11(2):135-144.
  • 2008 “Critical Thinking in Anthropology.” In Critical Thinking in College, George W. Rainbolt and Sandra L. Dwyer (eds), 246-248. Thomson/Wadsworth.
  • 2008 “Polygyny and Christian Marriage in Africa: The Case of Benin.” African Studies Review 51(2):51-74.
  • 2007 “Good and Bad Witches: The Transformation of Witchcraft in Benin.” West Africa Review 10:1-27.

Invited Essays and Blogs

Book Reviews

  • 2018 An Ethnography of a Vodu Shrine in Southern Togo: Of Spirit, Slave and Sea, by Eric J. Montgomery and Christian N. Vannier. American Ethnologist 45(2): 308-309.
  • 2015. Witchcraft and a Life in the New South Africa, by Isak Niehaus. American Anthropologist 117(3):616-617.
  • 2011. Allah Made Us: Sexual Outlaws in an Islamic African City, by Rudolf Pell Gaudio. Australian Journal of Anthropology 22(2): 284-286.
  • 2009. Polygamy: A Cross-Cultural Analysis, by Miriam Koktvedgaard Zeitzen. Social Anthropology / Anthropologie Sociale 17(4): 510-511.

Web Links

Sociology & Anthropology Undergraduate Program
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