Jane Saffitz

Jane L. Saffitz

Assistant Professor
Position Type
- Present
She / Her / They / Them
BA, Washington University in St. Louis; MSW, Columbia University; PhD, University of California Davis

Learning & Teaching

  • ANSO 100 - People, Culture, and Society
  • ANSO 220 - Medical Anthropology
  • ANSO 290 - Development of Social Thought
  • ANSO 345 - Unruly Bodies
  • ANSO 350 - Field Research Methods
  • ANSO 451/2 - Senior Research



Jane Saffitz is a broadly trained medical and cultural anthropologist. Her current research, based on over 30 months of fieldwork conducted in Tanzania between 2012 and 2018, uses ethnographic and archival methods to investigate the emergence of unruly categories of human difference in East Africa—first in a project on albinism and subsequently in a new project on formations of intersexuality—as sites of ontological and epistemological contestation. She argues that the rise of nascent categories not only evince new subjectivities and political and ethical possibilities for the future, but also come to inflect a range of tensions across sub-Saharan Africa, particularly around governance and state-NGO-media relations; health systems, healing epistemologies, and theories of bodily difference; and complex entanglements between science, religion, and the realm of the unseen.

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