Jennifer Erickson

Jennifer Erickson

Associate Professor of Anthropology and Assistant Chair of the Department of Anthropology


Room:BB 305

Jennifer Erickson's research interests include refugee resettlement, welfare, taxes, gender, race, ethnicity, and urban anthropology with a geographic focus on the Midwest United States, South Sudan, and Bosnia-Herzegovina. Dr. Erickson's articles have appeared in Signs, Focaal, Human Organization, and Romani Studies. Her forthcoming book, Race-ing Fargo: Refugees, Citizenship, and the Transformation of Small Cities (2020) compares and contrasts refugee resettlement and welfare agencies and Bosnian and Southern Sudanese refugees in Fargo, North Dakota. The book outlines the ways in which refugee resettlement has reconfigured what constitutes diversity in Fargo, how various actors and institutions have responded to refugees, and how refugees–New Americans–serve as change agents in the city.

 Dr. Erickson teaches classes and advises undergraduate and graduate students in the areas of gender, race and ethnicity, political economy, migration, urban life, and ethnographic methods. Her immersive (or experiential) learning classes include an ethnographic methods course that studied the history, demographics, and culture of one Muncie neighborhood (see and

In summer 2019, Dr. Erickson led a three-week ethnographic field school to Bosnia-Herzegovina where students researched three different cities with a focus on ethnicity, religion, and political economy (see

Dr. Erickson's current research includes a comparative urban ethnography of Muncie, Indiana, and Zenica, Bosnia-Herzegovina. The history, culture, and political economies of these two cities differed significantly through the twentieth century; however, due to globalization and (post)industrialism, the cities have become increasingly similar. The aim of study is to examine how city leaders and residents respond to global processes in both similar and different ways, for example, neoliberal capitalism and the economic inequality that it engenders, climate change, war (the 1992-1995 war in Bosnia continues to impact local populations), and disagreements and discrimination among groups of residents. Ultimately, the goal is to better understand how small and mid-sized cities can become more equitable and resilient in the face of global challenges.

Pronouns: She/Her/Hers (


MA, PhD, Anthropology, University of Oregon

BA, English Literature and Psychology, Luther College

Research Interests

  • Refugee Resettlement
  • Race and ethnicity
  • Gender
  • Citizenship
  • Diversity
  • Urban Anthropology
  • Comparative ethnography
  • Taxes

Teaching (BSU Courses)

  • Anthropology of Everyday Life
  • Anthropology of the United States
  • Anthropology of Gender
  • Applied Anthropology
  • Ethnographic Methods and Ethnographic Field School
  • History and Theory in Anthropology
  • Race and Ethnicity
  • Urban Anthropology
  • International Women's Issues
  • Scope of Cultural Anthropology (graduate theory course)

Service and Memberships

  • Graduate Executive Committee Executive Board
  • Boren Scholarship Committee
  • Internship Coordinator
  • Director of Graduate Studies in Anthropology (2014-2018)
  • Book Editor, Journal of the Anthropology of North America
  • Society for the Anthropology of North America (board member)
  • American Anthropological Association (member)
  • Society for Applied Anthropology (member)
  • Association of Feminist Anthropology (member)

Selected Publications

2020. Race-ing Fargo: Refugees and the Transformation of Small Cities. Ithaca, NY: Cornell University Press.

Erickson, Jennifer. 2017. Race-ing Fargo. Cultural Anthropology, Fieldsites.

Morgen, Sandra and Jennifer Erickson. 2017. Incipient "Commoning" In Defense of the Public? Competing Varieties of Fiscal Citizenship in Tax- and Spending Related Direct Democracy. Special Issue on "The Commons," edited by Ida Susser and Don Nonini. Focaal: Journal of Global and Historical Anthropology 79(2017): 54-66.

Erickson, Jennifer. "Intersectionality Theory and Bosnian Roma: Understanding Violence and Displacement." Romani Studies 27(1). June 2017.

Erickson, Jennifer. 2012. Volunteering with Refugees: Neoliberalism, Hegemony, and (Senior) Citizenship. Human Organization 71(2):167-175. Summer 2012.

Erickson, Jennifer. 2012. Emotions out of Place?: Bosnian Roma in Fargo, North Dakota. Etudes Tsiganes: Special Issue: Emotion and Place: A Gypsy/Roma Account. Edited by Aspasia Theodosiou and Micol Brazzabeni. Fall 2011.

Erickson, Jennifer and Caroline Faria. 2011. "We want empowerment for our women": Transnational Feminism, Neoliberal Citizenship and the Gendering of Women's Political Subjectivity in South Sudan." Signs 36(3): 627-652.

Curriculum Vitae

Course Schedule
Course No. Section Times Days Location
Anth of the United S 342 800 0000 - 0000 OL, room ONLINE
Ethnographic Methods 459 800 0000 - 0000 OL, room ONLINE