B.A., St. Lawrence University; M.A., University of Chicago; Ph.D., Columbia University
Founders Rm. 217
Sara LewisElisabeth Luce Moore Postdoctoral Fellow
Anthropologist of religion and medicine specializing in Tibet and South Asia.
As an anthropologist working at the intersection of culture, religion, and mental health, my work considers how individuals and communities cope with distress and cultivate resilience. My book in progress, "Spacious Minds: Trauma and Resilience Among Tibetan Exiles," investigates how Buddhist concepts of time and memory shape responses to trauma, and how those cultural ideals collide with global human rights narratives. A new project--a transnational ethnography on death and dying among Tibetan exiles--considers an apparent paradox: how a temporal focus on rebirth may enhance agency and empowerment in the present.
I currently teach in the area of religion, healing and medicine. My courses are interdisciplinary and engage approaches and methods in anthropology, religion, Buddhist Studies, and global health. I am particularly interested in mentoring students who wish to explore the dynamic intersections of global health, medicine, and other clinical endeavors.
I currently chair the Critical Anthropology for Global Health (CAGH) Special Interest Group of the Society for Medical Anthropology, which examines how critical medical anthropology theory and practices may inform global health. In addition to my research and services activities, I previously worked in community mental health as a social worker in the areas of serious mental illness, mindfulness, and palliative care.
You can access a selection of my publications here: https://wellesley.academia.edu/SaraLewis
Outside of the classroom I can be found in the mountains or on a meditation retreat.