My life in the world of Social Anthropology started at the University of Sydney where I received an honours degree, and later I completed my doctorate at the University of Cambridge in 2005. Before returning to the University of Sydney, I held the position of Associate Researcher in Anthropology at Columbia University. For the most part I carry out my ethnographic fieldwork with the Mehinaku people of the Upper Xingu area in the Brazilian Amazon but I have an abiding interest in comparative field research.
My work is generally concerned with people’s actual experience of their lives, as Malinowski, a founder of anthropology describes it, the “outlook on life… the breath of life and reality” of the people concerned (1999:517). I have focused on developing an anthropology of ‘ordinary reality’, of people’s sense of their moment-to-moment existence. Mostly this research has been done in the context of pragmatism and existential and phenomenological anthropology. I am interested in the intricacies involved in writing anthropology, particularly in the creation of methodologies for writing about events of consciousness such as those of ordinary reality, mystical experience, ritual, and the experience of landscape. I am also concerned with the field of comparative environmental ethics. Recently I launched my first book, 'A Walk to the River in Amazonia: Ordinary Reality for the Mehinaku Indians', published by Berghahn Press.