• AN1001: Anthropology: Cultural Diversity in Global Perspective (Level 1; TSV)
  • AN2106: Anthropology of Violence: The State, Politics and Citizens (Level 2; TSV)
  • AN3006: Anthropology and Development: Critical Perspectives on Globalisation and Inequality (Level 3; TSV)
  • AN4006: Anthropological Theory (Level 4; CNS & TSV)
  • AN5006: Asia Pacific Development: Culture and Globalisation (Level 5; TSV)
  • BA1001: Time, Truth and the Human Condition (Level 1; TSV)
  • My research interests fall into two broad areas, Amazonian ethnography, including shamanism and medical anthropology, and democracy, citizenship and inequality. My regional area of expertise is Latin America
  • The biocultural ecology of Piaroa shamanism: I conducted 18 months of ethnographic research living with the Piaroa ethnic group of southern Venezuela, working with shamans in several villages to understand how the power to heal, divine and cause sorcery harm is developed, how status among shamans is socially determined and how the increasing global popularity of shamanism has affected local, increasingly multicultural practices. This project draws on ideas from a range of disciplinary backgrounds, including psychopharmacology, to develop a cultural neurophenomenological approach to shamanism.
  • Ayahuasca and health in Australia: As part of a collaborative, multidisciplinary project involving staff from psychiatry, psychology and nursing, I conducted interviews with Australian ayahuasca drinkers to explore their ideas about health in relation to the psychoactive tea of Amazonian origin now consumed throughout the world for healing and spiritual experience. This research explores how Australians have adapted and invented rituals and reconceptualised notions of spirit and spirits as part of the globalization of religion and extends to understanding ways in which ayahuasca has been used to treat addiction.
  • Democratization, citizenship, inequality and public space: I am currently examining the relationships among public space, citizenship practices and possibilities for democratization in Uruguay. During a period in global history marked by rising inequality, crises of political legitimacy, a hollowing out of democracy and reduction in notions of citizenship to consumer culture, Uruguay continues to carve an independent political path characterised by decreasing inequality, live links between social movements and political parties and diversity of debate. I explore stories and practices of civic culture, including candombé dance and mate drinking, to consider the ways that these may engender equality, and how a history of dissent linked to a dictatorship past (1973-1985) may now foster democratization in the neoliberal age.
Research Disciplines
Socio-Economic Objectives

These are the most recent publications associated with this author. To see a detailed profile of all publications stored at JCU, visit ResearchOnline@JCU. Hover over Altmetrics badges to see social impact.

Journal Articles
Book Chapters
  • Scuro J and Rodd R (2015) Neo-shamanism. In: Encyclopedia of Latin American Religions. Religions of the World. Springer, pp. 1-6
Other research outputs

Advisory Accreditation: I can be on your Advisory Panel as a Primary or Secondary Advisor.

These Higher Degree Research projects are either current or by students who have completed their studies within the past 5 years at JCU. Linked titles show theses available within ResearchOnline@JCU.

  • Takiwasi: An Investigation of a Novel Treatment for Drug Addiction. (PhD, Secondary Advisor)
  • A Descriptive Grammar of Piaroa, a Previously Undocumented Language from Venezuela (PhD, Secondary Advisor)
  • Anthropological Models of the Balinese Self and its role in Psychopathology (PhD, Secondary Advisor)
  • Excavating the Tamarind Tree: the Impact of the Archaeological Process on the Village of Ban Non Wat, Thailand (PhD, Secondary Advisor)
  • A Study of the Historical, Socio-Cultural and Aesthetic Dynamics of the Spanish Bullfighting (PhD, Primary Advisor)

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