Smithsonian Journeys Experts
Sandra Cate, anthropologist and folklorist, explores the material and expressive culture of Southeast Asia, in such diverse manifestations as Buddhist temple murals, Mien/Yao embroidery, and traffic jams in Bangkok. Sandra teaches a broad range of cultural anthropology classes, with specific interests in global processes, art in cultural context, religion and ritual, consumption and exchange, conflict, gender and sexuality, tourism, and concepts of heritage. She has also written on the contemporary Asian art market and the changing conditions shaping festival and textile production. While a Fulbright scholar in Thailand, she collected T'ai textiles for the Phoebe Hearst Museum of Anthropology.
Sandra’s publications include Making Merit, Making Art: A Thai Temple in Wimbledon (2003), Buddhist Storytelling in Thailand and Laos: The Vessantara Jataka Scroll at the Asian Civilisations Museum (2013) and Building Buddhist Temples Abroad, forthcoming 2015.
A recipient of numerous prestigious awards, Sandra is a member of American Anthropological Association and the Association for Asian Studies. Trained at the University of California, Berkeley, she currently teaches anthropology at San Jose State University in Silicon Valley.
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