Featured Profile

Gina Athena Ulysse
Associate Professor of Anthropology and African-American Studies
Wesleyan University

Gina Athena Ulysse is an Associate Professor of anthropology and African-American Studies at Wesleyan University. She was born in Petion-Ville, Haiti. In her early teens, her family migrated to the East Coast of the United States. A poet/performer and multi-media artist, she was trained as an anthropologist at the University of Michigan where she earned her Ph.D. in 1999. Her doctoral research project resulted in her first book Downtown Ladies: Informal Commercial Importers, A Haitian Anthropologist and Self- Making in Jamaica (Chicago 2007)—a study of female import/export entrepreneurs. She has published several articles on issues of gender, race and class performance and representation, fieldwork conflicts and feminisms and Haitian dyasporic tensions. Her poetry has appeared in numerous anthologies and journals. Ulysse engages in public scholarship mainly through her performance and other artistic works. To that end, she insists on pushing the boundaries of cultural anthropology with her spokenword performances, which she considers an “alter(ed)native” form of ethnography. A riveting performer, described as by a reviewer as “a fantastic whirlwind of word and emotion, transforming Haiti from an objective abstract to a subjective reality,” Ulysse has performed across the U.S on the college circuit as well as at Center Stage Theatre in Santa Barbara, Lyric Stage Theatre in Boston as well as Bluestockings Bookstore, Brecht Forum, and LaMaMa in NYC. She has also performed several times in Berlin, Germany. Ulysse is developing her one-woman show “Because When God is too Busy” for the stage in 2010. She is currently writing Loving Haiti, Loving Vodou, a memoir and a play “Voodoo” Doll Or What if Haiti were a Woman: A Little Magic in 21 Points


Recent Contributions by Gina Athena Ulysse