I am currently Assistant Professor of Diaspora Studies, Human Rights, and Transnational Migration in the Department of Global and Intercultural Studies at Miami University, Ohio. I received a Ph.D. in Political Science from the University of Hawaiʻi at Mānoa in 2016.
As a Norwegian-American growing up in an immigrant community in Oslo, Norway, I became interested at an early age in how exilic groups form senses of belonging in the diaspora. I later went to live and study in Thailand where I became interested in the plight of Burmese refugees. As a practitioner of dance, one way I engage my research community is through practice and performance. As a result, my research and teaching interests span diverse subdisciplines and methodologies, such as political ethnography, critical political theory, dance ethnography, Asian cultural studies, mobilities studies, aesthetics and international relations with a particular emphasis on refugee politics in Southeast Asia.
My in-progress book manuscript, Aesthetic Nationalism: The Dance of War and Exile along the Thai-Myanmar Border, is based on embedded field research in Northern Thailand, where I conducted ethnographic and archival research with Tai refugees from Myanmar. I was the 2015 Moscotti Fellow for Southeast Asian Studies and my research has received funding from The École française d’Extrême-Orient (EFEO) and language training from several Foreign Languages and Area Studies Fellowships, as well as a fellowship from the Fulbright-Hays Group Projects Abroad Program for the Advanced Study of Thai.