Dr Susan MacDougall

Dr Susan MacDougall

College Lecturer, Archaeology and Anthropology (Keble College)
College Email Address: 

My focus is on everyday life in the Arabic-speaking Middle East, especially on the ways in which concepts like “femininity” or “professionalism” are translated into deliberative practice, and what that translation process can tell us about the concepts themselves. In my doctoral work, I explored the ways that working-class women in Jordan use domestic routines to experiment with different interpretations of proper female behaviour, rendering that category unstable through their actions even as they acknowledge its rigidity in their speech. My analysis was based on nearly three years of ethnographic fieldwork in one Amman neighbourhood. In my current research, I am looking at the way work is changing in the Gulf Cooperation Council as educated people, especially young people, are prepared to take on leadership roles. My intention in this project is to see how nationality, class, and gender are enacted through everyday workplace tasks, and how institutions, including companies and governments, intervene in that enactment.

Research and expertise: Gender, Jordan, Ethics, Leadership, GCC

Current Teaching: Anthropological Theory, Cultural Representations

Selected Publications: 

2016. “Ethnography: Deviation.” In “Correspondences: Ethnography,” edited by Susan MacDougall, Cultural Anthropology.

2014. “Will You Marry My Son? Ethnography, Culture, and the Performance of Gender.” Journal of the Anthropological Society of Oxford. 7(1): 25-38.

2014. “Is Work on the Virtuous Self a Group Project?Anthropology News.