Erik de Maaker (PhD, Leiden) is a researcher and lecturer at the Institute of Cultural Anthropology and Development Sociology of Leiden University in the Netherlands. He studied anthropology in Amsterdam and Leiden and wrote a PhD dissertation that takes changing religious practices among the Garo as a starting point for an analysis of social and economic transformation in upland Northeastern India. His current research focuses on the redefinition of land as a resource, as well as processes of ‘place’ making in the extended eastern Himalayas. This includes the redefinition and re-appreciation of ‘traditional’ cultural ideas and practices (‘heritage’), and their growing importance in terms of ethnicity, indigeneity and nation. Methodologically, the material and performative dimensions of culture are central to his research. Work in the peripheries of post-colonial states has raised his interest in the growing importance of Asia’s borders, and he is one of the founders of the Asian Borderlands Research Network. Erik has published in academic journals and edited volumes, and is preparing a monograph on the modernisation of ‘custom’, community and relatedness in upland Northeast India.
For more details regarding his research and publications, you can see his full profile at the Leiden university website.