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Since 1999, I have conducted fieldwork among the Manding people of Gambia, Guinea, and in immigrant communities in New York. In 2007, my doctoral research culminated in a dissertation, “Learning Culture through a Musical Practice with Manding Jalis in New York” (Cornell University). For the past ten years, I've continued my apprenticeship to a master balafon jali (a musician, oral historian, and spiritual leader), Famoro Dioubaté. My anthropological focus on imaginative ethnography is combined with embodied practice and reflective practice through participation in art, music and ritual, resulting in artful writing, photography, audio and visual recordings, as well as academic publications.
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