B.S. - Vanderbilt University
M.A., Ph.D. - University of California - San Diego
DISCIPLINE: Cultural Anthropology
RESEARCH: Medical and psychological anthropology; Cognitive science; Culture and subjective well-being; Psychosocial stress and health disparities; Environment and health; Cross-cultural psychiatry and mind-body medicine; New media and virtual communities; Narrative; Religion and morality; Indigenous knowledge; Subaltern identity in India; Qualitative and quantitative research methods
CLASSES:Undergraduate: ANTH 100: Introduction to Cultural Anthropology; ANTH 322: Religion, Culture, and Mind; ANTH 334: Narrative Traditions & Social Experience; ANTH 441: Research Methods in Cultural Anthropology; ANTH 444: Cultures of Virtual Worlds: Research Methods; ANTH 445: Psychological Anthropology; Graduate: ANTH 545: Culture and Mental Health; ANTH 643: Advanced Ethnographic Field Preparation
Presently, I build integrative and interdisciplinary theoretical models - based on original research conducted with mixed qualitative and quantitative methods - related to the psychocultural dimensions of stress and mind-body health and healing. This expresses itself in two current projects. First, I am investigating the addictive and therapeutic dimensions of World of Warcraft - a "massively multiuser online role-playing game" (MMORPG) and internet community. I am most interested to understand how this online environment facilitates altered "dissociative" experiences, which, by promoting or relieving stress, are linked to both positive and negative health outcomes. My research has begun with primarily U.S. gamers with plans to extend the project to France and India. Second, I am working to understand how loss of access to forest spaces and resources - for example, through deforestation and displacement from a newly established wildlife preserve in central India - impact indigenous peoples' health and systems of healing. I am especially interested to clarify how the ethnopsychiatric and potentially stress-relieving dimensions of indigenous therapies - for example, the healing power of spiritual states of consciousness - continue to function in these compromised environments. I hope work on both of these projects will contribute anthropological perspectives on psychocultural stress and the so-called "placebo" and "nocebo" effects.
My recent research on indigenous peoples and the environment appears in journals such as American Anthropologist and Human Dimensions of Wildlife; I also co-edited the March 2008 issue of the Journal for the Study of Religion, Nature, and Culture (Special issue: Indigenous Nature Reverence and Environmental Degradation: Exploring Critical Intersections of Animism and Conservation). I have a published a book with Oxford University Press (2006): Casting Kings: Bards and Indian Modernity. Past research also appears in journals such as American Ethnologist, Cultural Anthropology, Culture and Religion, Ethnos, and several issues of the Journal of the Royal Anthropological Society (JRAI, erstwhile Man). I have received grants from the American Institute of Indian Studies, the National Endowment of the Humanities, the National Science Foundation, the Spencer Foundation, the Killam Foundation, and the National Geographic Society.
I am especially interested to take in graduate students ready to employ mixed qualitative-quantitative methods to understand questions at the intersection of the social and cognitive sciences, and especially how culture-specific virtual and natural spaces impact human mental health and well-being.
Do you play World of Warcraft? If yes, take Dr. Snodgrass's well-being survey now (or pass the survey link on to your player friends)! This link will direct you to the survey: http://tinyurl.com/wowwellness