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Meet the Postdoc: Sean Gantt

by on October 25, 2013

Today’s post is from Sean Gantt, Postdoctoral Fellow in Native American Studies at Brown University.

Halito, Sa-hochifo yát Sean Gantt. Charlotte, NC si-aiálhi. Chahta hicha Na Hollo siyah. Iksa Comby akanomi. (Hello, my name is Sean Gantt. I am from Charlotte, NC. I am of European and Choctaw descent. I am related to the Comby family.)

I am the new postdoctoral fellow in Native American Studies hosted in Anthropology at Brown University. I am happy to join the department for the 2013-2014 academic year. I am very excited to be at Brown University and I look forward to working with the Haffenreffer Museum of Anthropology, as well as the Center for the Study of Race and Ethnicity in America (CSREA), Native American and Indigenous Studies at Brown (NAISAB) , and the student group Native Americans at Brown (NAB).

Gantt Dissertation Defense
Sean Gantt defending his dissertation on July 29, 2013 at the University of New Mexico in Albuquerque. Photo courtesy of Sean Gantt

I am new to the area, recently moving from Albuquerque, NM where I completed my PhD in Anthropology at the University of New Mexico. My dissertation, titled “Nanta Hosh Chahta Immi? (What are Choctaw Lifeways?): Cultural Preservation in the Casino Era,” investigates the long-term impacts of tribal economic development programs on the Mississippi Band of Choctaw Indians (MBCI) reservation in East-Central Mississippi. Before going to grad school in New Mexico I earned my BA in Anthropology from Davidson College in North Carolina.

I am a visual and public anthropologist with training in both archaeological and ethnographic research methods. I specialize on Southeastern U.S. Native American Studies and focus on tribal economic development, Indigenous self-representation, and identity. My work builds on the growing body of theory and research in Decolonization and Tribal Critical Race Theory, as well as critical Indigenous scholarship.

Gantt videotaping
Sean Gantt recording in the field for his video project “New Mexico Flintknappers: Breakin’ Rock,” (2008) 13 minutes. Photo courtesy of Sean Gantt

In the spring I will be teaching ETHN1890H: Introduction to American Indian Studies at Brown, and look forward to the opportunity to work with students in an engaging class looking at some of these issues. The class will certainly approach Native American Studies from a critical perspective, but there will also be flexibility for students to investigate research areas of their own choice as well. I encourage anyone interested in learning more about the class to contact me via email at

If you are interested in learning more about me, my research, or my video work please check out my website:

Yakoke, hachi pisa la chine (Thank you, see you all soon)

– Sean E. Gantt, PhD

Thanks, Sean — we’re glad you could join us!

Readers: we welcome guest bloggers! If you are interested in writing about your experience with the Haffenreffer, please contact Jennifer Stampe, blog editor and Postdoctoral Fellow in Anthropology, at

From → People, Research

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