Steven P. Black

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Steven Black is Assistant Professor of Anthropology at Georgia State University. He holds a Ph. D. in anthropology awarded by the University of California, Los Angeles. Dr. Black’s work is located at the intersection of linguistic and medical anthropology, with a geographic focus on South Africa. He has studied HIV/AIDS support and activism in Durban, South Africa, and is in the initial stages of a project on environmental activism in Cape Town. Dr. Black speaks isiZulu (a.k.a. Zulu) and Spanish, and is currently studying Dutch, exploring the grammatical links between Dutch and Afrikaans (a South African language derived from 16th century Dutch) as well as those between isiZulu and isiXhosa (a closely related South African language).

Dr. Black is also an accomplished jazz saxophonist and he incorporates the study of music, performance, and verbal art into his research. In 2008 he conducted ethnographic fieldwork with a Zulu gospel choir that was an HIV support group and AIDS activist organization. He expects the themes of music, performance, and verbal art to resurface in his new project that draws from another of his interests, environment and environmentalism. In addition to playing saxophone, guitar, and piano, Dr. Black enjoys the outdoors in urban, rural and park forms, and he has hiked or run through these spaces on five continents. In his new project, he is interested in understanding how people conceptualize environment(s), especially the relationship between health and environment(s), and hopes that his future research on these topics will contribute to public discourse on environmentalism and global warming.

Beginning in November 2013, Dr. Black will hold the linguistics seat on the ethics committee of the American Anthropology Association for a three year term.

About Dr. Black

Contact information

Office   352B Sparks Hall

Phone  (404) 413-5168

Fax       (404) 413-5159


Dept of Anthropology

Georgia State University

PO Box 3998

Atlanta, GA 30302-3998


ANTH 1102               Introduction to Anthropology

ANTH 2040               Introduction to Linguistic Anthropology

ANTH 4460/ 6460    Health and Culture

ANTH 4480/ 6480    Ethnographic Analysis