Dr. Hélène Neveu Kringelbach
Dr Hélène Neveu Kringelbach completed her D.Phil. in Social Anthropology at the University of Oxford in 2005. She held an ESRC postdoctoral fellowship in 2005-06, followed by a Departmental Lecturership in African Studies in 2006-08. From 2008 to 2011, she held a teaching post as the Evans Pritchard Departmental Lecturer in African Anthropology (shared post between the African Studies Centre and the School of Anthropology), in association with St Anne’s College.
Dr Neveu Kringelbach’s doctoral research focused on dance and social mobility in Dakar, Senegal. A monograph building further on this work is currently under review with Berghahn, Oxford. An ethnographic and historical study of dance troupes and popular dances in Dakar, the book explores various genres and contexts from women’s dances during neighbourhood events and family ceremonies to ‘contemporary’ choreography, through popular dance videos and neo-traditional musical theatre. This reveals the many ways in which young city dwellers use bodily skills to access different social worlds. People engage simultaneously with different dance practices which emerge as livelihoods, spaces of individual creativity and festive antidotes to the uncertainty of life in urban Africa. The study also keeps an eye out for the emergence of an artistic profession, its problematic status in a predominantly Muslim society, and the insertion of African performers into global artistic circuits.
Dr Neveu Kringelbach is currently conducting research on Euro-Senegalese families in France, the UK and Senegal. This 2-year study is one of 11 projects in the Leverhulme-funded Oxford Diasporas Programme (www.migration.ox.ac.uk/odp/). With a focus on bi-national families involving a Senegalese and a European partner as a case study, this project aims at exploring processes of family-making in a diasporic context, from a gendered and cross-generational perspective. Given the increase in bi-national marriages in much of Europe and the growing numbers of citizens who define themselves or their children as ‘mixed’, there is a need for a historically grounded, holistic study of these families. Families are indeed a privileged lens through which processes of creolization and social convergence, as well as processes of exclusion, can be explored. The Senegalese-European case is particularly appropriate to explore the impact of diasporas on family-making thanks to the historical presence of a Senegalese diaspora in Europe and of European diasporas in Senegambia.
The project also aims at exploring religious transmission and the negotiation of religious practice within transnational families.
Dr Neveu Kringelbach’s teaching interests include the Anthropology of Africa; The Anthropology of dance, music, theatre and popular culture; African diasporas; Transnational families; Gender; African photography and film; Beautification of the body in Africa.