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Joshua Cole Brown

Title of Program: Socio-Cultural Anthropology and Migration Studies

E-mail Address:  jbrow191@vols.utk.edu

Hometown:  Corryton, Tennessee

Year: Third-Year

Anticipated Graduation Date:  May, 2018

Description of Program:  My College Scholars program seeks to understand the various phenomena surrounding displacement and forced migration through the lens of socio-cultural anthropology. Beginning as a student of Arabic and the modern Middle East, my studies have now expanded to compound this regional study with new focuses on the global refugee regime and its legal constitution. These new emphases highlight an interest and growing need to understand the relationship between these various phenomena of displacement and forced migration against their domestic and/or international arenas. The College of Law and the Departments of Anthropology, Geography, Political Science, and Sociology currently comprise my self-designed program and thesis research for the College Scholars Program. Currently, my thesis research aims to understand the transformative pressures of forced migration upon legal apparatuses and statutes of the domestic state (Germany, Jordan) against that of the international normative discourse on humanitarianism, human rights, and refugee rights. It is within this research that I hope to garner a greater understanding of how international covenants and conventions for refugees and asylum seekers exist against various social constructions of these forced migrants within varying domestic contexts.

Departmental Emphases:Anthropology, Law

Faculty Mentors:Dr. Tricia Hepner, Anthropology; Karla McKanders, Law

Plans after graduation (career, graduate/professional school, etc.): I plan to pursue a joint Juris Doctor (J.D.) and PhD in Social Anthropology. I also hope to continue conducting ethnographic research to further understand the transformative pressures of forced migration within the international legal and refugee regimes, Germany and Jordan serving as primary case studies. Beyond academia, I hope to pursue a career path that marries my interests in policy formation with advocacy and activism for refugees, asylum seekers, and other forced migrants throughout the globe. In any capacity, it is my aim to further promote culturally-specific and reflexively crafted responses to phenomena with displacement and forced migration, chiefly for Arabic-speaking populations throughout the Middle East/North Africa and to the United States.

Study Abroad:

  • Summer, 2015: Amman, Jordan
  • Winter, 2015: Kassel, Germany; Oxford, United Kingdom
  • Summer, 2016: Berlin, Germany; Edinburgh, United Kingdom
  • Fall, 2016: Amman, Jordan
  • Winter, 2016: Amsterdam, The Netherlands
  • Spring, 2017: Amman, Jordan


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