Erik de Maaker

1963 –
anthropology and sociology, religion, ritual, visual anthropology, ethnographic film
South Asia (esp. upland communities of eastern borderlands)

Curriculum vitae

1963born in Bennekom
1993MA anthropology and sociology at the University of Amsterdam
2006PhD under the supervision of J.G. Oosten (Leiden University) and H.W. van Schendel (University of Amsterdam)
2006-presentassistant professor, Institute for Cultural Anthropology and Development Sociology, Leiden University



1996  “Teyyam: Vishnumurti’s annual visit: an ethnographic video-film.” In: Clara Brakel (ed.), Performing arts of Asia: the performer as (inter) cultural transmitter, Leiden: International Institute for Asian Studies (Working papers series 4), pp. 97-100.
1998  Teyyam: the annual visit of the God Vishnumurti, dvd-video (57 min.); Watertown: Documentary Educational Resources. []
2000  “Integrating ethnographic research and filmmaking: video elicitation for a performance‐oriented analysis of the Teyyam ritual.” Visual Anthropology 13: 185-197. online version
2006  Negotiating life: Garo death rituals and the transformation of society, unpublished PhD thesis, Leiden University, 248 p. + DVD-video.
“Recording, constructing and reviewing Teyyam, the annual visit of the God Vishnumurti.” In: P. Crawford and M. Postma (eds), Reflecting visual ethnography: using the camera in anthropological research, Leiden-Aarhus: CNWS Publishers-Intervention Press, pp. 103-118.
2007  & Vibha Joshi, “Introduction: the Northeast and beyond region and culture.” South Asia: Journal of South Asian Studies 30,3: 381-390. online version
“From the Songsarek faith to Christianity: conversion, religious identity and ritual efficacy.” South Asia: Journal of South Asian Studies 30,3: 517-530. online version
& D.J. Nijland and D. Geirnaert-Martin, Ashes of life, the annual rituals of Laboya, Sumba 1996. Ethnographic multimedia DVD-series (3 DVDs with videofilms + ROM content). Göttingen: IWF Knowledge and Media (release no. C 12594).
2008  Teyyam: the annual visit of the God Vishnumurti, video (57 min.); streaming video in the Alexander Street Press Ethnographic Video Online Series []
2009  “Narratives of Garo witchcraft.” In: J. Jansen, S.W.J. Luning and E. de Maaker (eds), Traditions on the move: essays in honour of Jarich Oosten, Amsterdam: Rozenberg Publishers, pp. 147-157. online version
2010  & M. Schleiter, “Indigeneity as a cultural practice: ‘Tribe’ and the state in India. Introduction to the focus section ‘Indigenous India’.” IIAS newsletter 53: 16-17. online version
2011 & F. Dubois, K. Polit & M. Riphagen, “From ritual ground to stage.” In: R.L. Grimes et al. (eds), Ritual, media and conflict, Oxford, New York: Oxford University Press, pp. 35-61.
“Negotiations at death: assessing gifts, mothers, and marriages.” In: U. Hüsken and F. Neubert (eds), Negotiating rites, New York: Oxford University Press, pp. 43-57. pdf
2012  Review of: Sanghamita Mishra, Becoming a borderland: the politics of space and identity in colonial Northeastern India, New Delhi 2011. Seminar 640: 98-99.
2013  “Have the Mitdes gone silent? Conversion, rhetoric, and the continuing importance of the lower deities in Northeast India.” In: R. Young and J.A. Seitz (eds), Asia in the making of Christianity: conversion, agency, indigeneity 1600s to the present, Leiden: Brill, pp. 135-159.
“Performing the Garo Nation? Garo Wangala dancing between faith and folklore.” Asian Ethnology 72,2: 221-239.
2014  & Willem van Schendel, “Asian borderlands: introducing their permeability, strategic uses and meanings.” Journal of Borderlands Studies 29,1: 3-9. pdf
“Why do South Asian documentaries matter?” IIAS Newsletter 68: 30.
“Researching Garo death rites.” In: Sarit K. Chaudhuri and Sucheta Sen Chaudhuri (eds), Fieldwork in South Asia: memories, moments, and experiences, New Delhi: Sage, pp. 167-185. pdf
Review of: Beatrix Hauser, Promising rituals: gender and performativity in Eastern India, New Delhi: Routledge, 2012. Contributions to Indian Sociology 48, 3: 442-445.
2015  Review of: David N. Gellner (ed.), Borderland lives in Northern South Asia, Durham, NC/London: Duke University Press, 2013. South Asia: Journal of South Asian Studies 38,2: 349-350. online
2016  “Shifting ground? State and market in the uplands of Northeast India.” IIAS Newsletter 73: 6-7.
“The ambiguity of mortal remains, substitute bodies, and other materializations of the dead among the Garo of Northeast India” In: Peter Berger (ed.), Ultimate ambiguities : investigating death and liminality, New York: Berghahn Books, pp. 15-36.
2018 “On the nature of indigenous land: ownership, access, and farming in upland Northeast India.” In: E. Gerharz, Nasir Uddin and P. Chakkarath, P. (eds), Indigeneity on the Move: varying manifestations of a contested concept, New York.
“Research on climate change and sustainable livelihoods in the Hindu Kush Himalayas.”
2019& M. Schleiter, Media, indigeneity and nation in South Asia. Abingdon: Oxon, New York: Routledge.
& M. Schleiter (trsls), “Screening indigeneity and nation [markets, ethics and agency: changing land utilization and social transformation in the uplands of Northeast India].” In: M. Schleiter and E. de Maaker (red.), Media, Indigeneity and Nation in South Asia. Media, Culture and Social Change in Asia, Abingdon: Routledge. 1-25.
“Cultural records, stereotypes, and the conflation of past and present in the creation of Garo documentary films.” In: M. Schleiter and E. de Maaker (eds), Media, Indigeneity and Nation in South Asia. Abingdon: Oxon; New York: Routledge. 196-212.
“Garo: the Garo ethnic community. In: M. Carrin et al. (red.), Brill’s Encyclopedia of the Religions of the Indigenous People of South Asia Online: Brill.