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Department of Social Anthropology



Michael Edwards is a Smuts Research Fellow at the Centre of South Asian Studies. An anthropologist interested in religious life, media ecology, and political change, he received his PhD from the LSE in 2019. His first book project, Real Change: Myanmar and the Dissonance of Salvation (selected for the Atelier series at the University of California Press) is about the encounter between Pentecostalism and Buddhism during Myanmar’s fraught and fleeting democratic opening. A second ethnographic project explores questions of transnational religion and solidarity emerging from Myanmar’s unfolding revolution. He has a parallel interest in the history of anthropology, and is also writing (or has written) on such topics as translation, grace, reading, imagination, the 1990s, and the place of Australia in anthropological theory. He teaches South Asian Studies at Cambridge, has taught anthropology at the LSE and King’s College London, and is an editor at the History of Anthropology Review.


Edited volumes

2022. ‘Always Something Extra’: Ethnographies of Grace (with Méadhbh McIvor), Cambridge Journal of Anthropology 40/1. 

Journal articles

2022. “Circulating in difference: Performances of publicity on and beyond a Yangon train”, Journal of the Royal Anthropological Institute 28/2.

2022. “Introduction: The anthropology of grace and the grace of anthropology” (with Méadhbh McIvor), Cambridge Journal of Anthropology 40/1.  

2021. “Drowning in context: Translating salvation in Myanmar”Comparative Studies of South Asia, Africa and the Middle East 41/2. 

2021. “People are obsessed with religion: The definitional dissonance of evangelical encounters in Myanmar”, Journal of Southeast Asian Studies 52/1. 

Book chapters

Forthcoming, 2023. “Foreword thinking: Reading Graeber, Leach, and a revolution in Myanmar”, Essays on Anthropology as Possibility, Holly High and Joshua Reno (eds).

2022. “An equivocal position: Anthropology, Evans-Pritchard, and the spirit of translation”, The Routledge Handbook of Translation and Religion, Hephzibah Israel (ed).

Online publications

2023. “Revolution in Sagaing”Mekong Review

2022. “Graeber, Leach, and the revolution in Myanmar”, FocaalBlog.

2020.  “Maps to another nation”, The Christian Nation Project. [Republished at Tea Circle: New Perspectives on Burma/Myanmar].

2019. “Circulating publicness and public circulation”, The Immanent Frame: Secularism, Religion, and the Public Sphere.



Smuts Research Fellow, Centre of South Asian Studies
Dr M Edwards

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