Department of Archaeology and Ancient History

Franziska Bedorf

Phone: +46 18 471 2094

I am currently a Marie Curie postdoctoral researcher within the REAL (Resilience in East African Landscapes) ITN at the Department of Archaeology and Ancient History at Uppsala University. Before joining the department in September 2015, I worked as a research assistant at the Institute for Social and Cultural Anthropology at the University of Hamburg in Germany. I received my M.A. in Social and Cultural Anthropology (major), Contemporary History and Scandinavian Studies (minors) at the University of Cologne and completed my doctoral dissertation at the University of Hamburg in November 2014. In 2010/ 2011, I have been a visiting scholar at East Carolina University in Greenville, NC, USA. 

My main research interests include migration, identity formation (ethnicity/ nationalism/ transnationalism), the anthropology of borders, urban ethnography, (post)colonialism, anthropology of time and the life course, as well as organizational anthropology.

In my doctoral research I explored issues of migration, return and belonging in the case of elderly Mexicans living in Chicago. This research was based on a one year fieldwork in rural Mexico and Chicago. It was funded by the German Research Foundation (DFG) and the University of Hamburg. My M.A. thesis, for which I conducted empirical research in Windhoek, Namibia, focused on the construction and practices of “being coloured” in Namibia. 

Drawing on research from anthropology, history, sociology and human geography, I’ve always been intrigued by working across disciplinary boundaries and think that the REAL project has a great potential to fruitfully link insights about historical processes with analyses of current dynamics and models of future scenarios.

My work experiences outside academia, including development cooperation, curatorial work and organizational anthropology, have raised my awareness for the need to make research available and accessible to a wider audience. Within REAL, together with our team of researchers, I intend to explore and develop such potentials for a dialogue between our research and the wider public in both East Africa and Europe through media, educational material and exhibitions.