Amber R. Reed, PhD
2021-Present Spelman College, Assistant Professor of International Studies
2017-2021 Southern Oregon University, Assistant Professor of Anthropology
2016-2017 Drexel University, Visiting Assistant Professor of Anthropology
2016-Present University of Pennsylvania
Visiting Scholar, Anthropology
2014-2016 University of Pennsylvania
Postdoctoral Fellow, Anthropology and Africana Studies
2014 PhD, University of California-Los Angeles, Anthropology
Dissertation: “Inkululeko: Youth, NGOs, and Discourses of Democracy in Post-Apartheid South Africa”
2010 MA, University of California-Los Angeles, Anthropology
Thesis: “Creating New Leaders: Youth Involvement in Community Activism in South Africa”
2005 BA, Barnard College, Anthropology
Graduated Magna cum Laude
Honors and Awards
2019-2020 SOU Professional Development Grant for “Suburbia, Consumption, and the Post-Racial”
2019 Carpenter I Grant for Summer Fieldwork in South Africa
2018 Carpenter II Grant for African Studies Association Annual Meeting
2016 African Studies Association Dakar Travel Award
2015 Franklin Research Grant, American Philosophical Society
2014 UCLA Dissertation Year Fellowship (Declined)
2013 UCLA Anthropology Conference Travel Grant
2012 UCLA International Institute Dissertation Fieldwork Fellowship
2012 UCLA Anthropology Research Travel Grant
2010/11 UCLA Graduate Research Mentorship Program
2009/10 UCLA Graduate Summer Research Mentorship Program
2009 UCLA Anthropology Research Travel Grant
2009 National Science Foundation Graduate Research Fellowship Program Honorable Mention
2008-2012 UCLA Graduate Fellowship
2020 Reed, Amber. Nostalgia of the Oppressed: Youth, Democracy, and Culture in Post-
Apartheid South Africa. Notre Dame Press.
2019 “Racialized Space: Children Map the Post-Apartheid Landscape.” Visual Anthropology Review. 35(2).
2016 Reed, Amber. “Nostalgia in the Post-Apartheid State.” Anthropology Southern Africa. 39(2).
2016 Reed, Amber. “Democracy in Sub-Saharan Africa.” In Oxford Bibliographies in Anthropology. Ed. John Jackson. New York: Oxford University Press, forthcoming.
2011 Reed, Amber. “Creating New Leaders: Youth Activism in South Africa.” Ufahamu: A Journal of African Studies. vol. 36, no. 2.
2010 Reed, Amber & Hill, Amy. “ ‘Don’t Keep it to Yourself!” Digital Storytelling with South African Youth. Seminar.net. vol. 6, no. 2.
2009 Reed, Amber. “ ‘Don’t Keep it to Yourself:’ Young People in Mhlontlo (Eastern Cape) Tell Their Stories through the Digital Stories Project.” Sonke Gender Justice Network website: www.genderjustice.org.za.
Invited Book Reviews
2019 Contradictions of Democracy: Vigilantism and Rights in Post-Apartheid South Africa. Nicholas Rush
Smith. American Ethnologist.
2017 Democracy’s Infrastructure: Techno-Politics and Protest after Apartheid. Anita Von Schnitzler.
2017 Reed, Amber. “ Photos from the Field.” Neos 9(1).
2016 “Mapping Post-Apartheid: Rural South African Children and the Politics of Space.” Installation.
Screening Scholarship Media Festival, University of Pennsylvania, April.
2021 "Nostalgia, Human Rights, and Democracy in South Africa." International Studies, Spelman College.
2017 “Nostalgia, Democracy, and Race in South Africa.” Anthropology Department, Southern
2016 “Identity Politics and NGOs: A Case Study in South Africa.” Health and Societies: Global Perspectives course, University of Pennsylvania, March.
2016 “Nostalgia and Pedagogy in Post-Apartheid South Africa.” Indaba Series, Princeton Institute for International and Regional Studies. February.
2015 “Girls’ Rights and Cultural Relativism in South Africa.” Seneca International, U.N. International Day of the Girl. October.
2015 “Nostalgia and Neoliberalism in the Post-Apartheid State.” African Studies Workshop, Harvard University. October.
2015 “Nostalgia in Post-Apartheid South Africa.” Anthropology Department Colloquium, University of Pennsylvania, February.
2015 “Human Rights and Cultural Relativism in South Africa.” Penn International Affairs Association’s Model United Nations Conference. Philadelphia, January.
2015 “Teaching ‘Democracy’ through Digital Storytelling.” Programs in Education, Culture and Society, Graduate School of Education, University of Pennsylvania, January.
2014 “Cross-Cultural Perspectives on Mental Health and Behavior.” Psychology Course, Hunter College, CUNY, November.
2014 “Nostalgia and Neoliberalism in Post-Apartheid South Africa.” The Africa Center, University of Pennsylvania, November.
2013 “Teaching Democracy: Socialization of Political Ideology in Rural South Africa.” Linguistic Anthropology Course, UCLA, May.
2019 “Life Orientation as Democratic Project.” Southern Oregon Arts and Research, SOU, May.
2019 “Thinking Outside the Box? NGO Practices to Shape Youth Identity in the Rural Eastern Cape.
University of Texas at Austin Africa Conference, March.
2018 “Ambivalent Interventions: The Social Consequences of Medical Intervention in ‘The Field.’” African
Studies Association Annual Meetings, November.
2017 "Gender Transformation as Liberal Democratic Project: The Case of South Africa." African Studies Association Annual Meetings, November.
2017 “The Tyranny of Democracy: Producing Un-freedom in Post-Apartheid South Africa.” Diverse Unfreedoms and Their Ghosts, Rutgers University, March.
2016 “Internal Colonization and the Creation of Nostalgia in South Africa’s Former Transkei.” American Anthropological Association Annual Conference, November.
2016 “Transforming Citizenship: Democracy, Education and Nostalgia in the Post-Apartheid State.” Innovation, Transformation and Sustainable Futures in Africa, American Anthropology Association/African Studies Association Conference, Dakar, Senegal, June.
2016 “Mapping Post-Apartheid: Rural South African Children and the Politics of Space.” Installation. Screening Scholarship Media Festival, University of Pennsylvania, April.
2015 “Nostalgia for Apartheid and Democratic Discontent.” American Anthropological Association Annual Conference, Denver, CO, November.
2013 “Democracy Across Generations: Negotiations of and Resistance to New Values among Rural South African Youth and their Elders.” American Anthropological Association Annual Conference, Chicago, IL, November.
2011 “Conceptions of Childhood in Post-Apartheid South Africa.” Multiple Childhoods/Multidisciplinary Perspectives Conference, Rutgers University, May.
2010 “ ‘Don’t Keep It To Yourself!’: Digital Storytelling Among South African Youth.” American Anthropological Association Annual Conference, San Francisco, CA, November.
2010 “Gender Roles Among Youth Activists in South Africa.” Men, Masculinities and Family Planning in Africa, UCLA, October.
2010 “Creating New Leaders: Youth Involvement in Community Activism in South Africa.” African Activist Association Annual Conference, UCLA, May.
2016 “Democracy in Africa.” The Divided Line. WQHS Radio, University of Pennsylvania, March.
2021-Present Spelman College, International Studies
2017-Present Southern Oregon University, Anthropology Department
Cultural Anthropology: Perspectives on Humanity
Cultures in Comparison: Africa
NGOs and Humanitarianism
Democracy in Africa
2016-2017 Drexel University, Anthropology Department
Introduction to Cultural Anthropology
NGOs and Humanitarianism
2014-2016 University of Pennsylvania, Anthropology and Africana Studies
Youth and Democracy in Africa, an upper-level undergraduate course
NGOs and Humanitarianism, a mixed undergraduate/graduate course
The Anthropology of Nostalgia and Memory, a graduate course
2014 John Jay College, CUNY, Anthropology Department
Introduction to Anthropology, an undergraduate course
2013-2014 Baruch College, CUNY, Anthropology & Sociology Department
Introduction to Cultural Anthropology, an undergraduate course
Anthropological Analysis, an undergraduate capstone course for the minor
2009-2013 University of California, Los Angeles, Anthropology Department
Culture and Society, Study of Culture, Culture and Communication, Language in Culture
Methods in Cultural Anthropology
2005-2008 The American Museum of Natural History, High School After School Program, Education Department
Taught: Introduction to Anthropology, Introduction to Ethnographic Film
2014-Present The American Museum of Natural History, New York, NY
Course Scientist, Seminars on Science Online Courses
2014 The American Museum of Natural History, New York, NY
Human Bulletins Content Advisor, Science Bulletins
2005-2008 The American Museum of Natural History, New York, NY
High School After-School Program Coordinator, Education Department
2015 Johannesburg Workshop in Theory and Criticism
University of the Witswatersrand, South Africa, June/July
2013 Making Better Writers of Your Students
Schwartz Institute, Baruch College, CUNY, October
2013 Atlas.ti Training Workshop for Qualitative Research Analysis
AIDS Institute, UCLA, May
2012 MenEngage Africa Workshop with Sonke Gender Justice
Gender-based violence prevention and gender equality workshop, Rwanda, March
2016-Present African Studies Association
2014-Present Africana Department’s Postdoctoral Scholars Workshop, University of Pennsylvania
2014-Present CAMRA, University of Pennsylvania
2013-2014 City University of New York (CUNY) Childhood Scholars Group
2008-Present Interest Group on NGOs and Nonprofits, AAA
2008-Present Anthropology of Children and Childhood Interest Group, AAA
2008-2014 African Activists Association
2007-Present American Anthropological Association
2018-2019 Member, Financial Aid Committee, Southern Oregon University
2018-2019 Member, Professional Learning Community/Upper Division Education, Southern Oregon
2017-Present Member, International Studies Committee, Southern Oregon University
2015 Volunteer Panel Co-Organizer and Discussant, “Strange Presents/Familiar Pasts: The Anthropology of Nostalgia.” American Anthropological Association Annual Conference, November
2013-Present Peer Reviewer, Cultural Anthropology, American Anthropologist, Social Problems, African Studies, Global Public Health
2013 Volunteer Panel Co-Organizer, “Nascent Democracies: Discontent, Negotiation, Resistance.” American Anthropological Association Annual Conference, November
English: Native Language
Xhosa: Intermediate Listener, Intermediate Speaker, Intermediate Reading and Writing
Afrikaans: Novice Listener, Novice Speaker, Novice Reading and Writing
Spanish: Intermediate Listener, Intermediate Speaker, Intermediate Reading and Writing