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Indiana University Bloomington
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Department of American Studies College of Arts and Sciences

Jason Baird Jackson

Picture of Jason Baird Jackson

Associate Professor, Department of Folklore
Affiliated Faculty, Cultural Studies and Anthropology
Member of the Committee on Native American and Indigenous Studies

Office: 506 N. Fess Ave., Room 301
Phone: (812) 856-1868
E-mail: jbj at


Ph.D., Anthropology, Indiana University, 1998

Research Interests

  • Cultural endangerment and revitalization
  • Material culture
  • Belief and ritual
  • Culural history
  • Verbal art
  • Museum work
  • American and Native American Studies (Eastern North America)

Personal Statement

I am a folklorist and ethnologist whose teaching and research work bridges the fields of American studies, folklore studies, cultural anthropology, linguistic anthropology, and ethnomusicology. I have collaborated with Native American communities in Oklahoma (USA) since 1993, when I began a lifelong personal and research relationship with the Euchee people. My studies concern, most centrally, the nature of customary arts, practices, and beliefs and the role that these play in social life. In addition to the ethnography and ethnology of Eastern North America, I am increasingly also pursuing projects that explore emerging (and often quite contested) issues in the areas of intellectual property, cultural property, and heritage policy. Lastly, most of my career has been spent working as a curator in museum contexts, and I remain deeply engaged with research in, and teaching about, museums, especially museums of art and ethnography. I am the former editor of the long-standing journal Museum Anthropology and I founded and continue to edit the open-access journal Museum Anthropology Review. Among my current projects is a book on the role of community rituals in shaping historical consciousness among the native peoples of Eastern North America. In this project I am seeking to extend the arguments of my first book, Yuchi Ceremonial Life: Performance, Meaning and Tradition in a Contemporary American Indian Community (University of Nebraska Press, 2003).

Courses Recently Taught

  • Indigenous Worldviews in the Americas
  • Native American Folklore
  • Public Practice in Folklore and Ethnomusicology
  • Folklore Theory in Practice
  • World Arts and Cultures
  • Putting Cultural Theory to Use
  • Contesting Culture as Property
  • Curatorship
  • Theories of Material Culture

Publication Highlights

Learn more about my teaching, curatorial and research work online at:

Honors and Awards

  • GPSO/IU Graduate School Faculty Mentor Award, 2010-2011
  • IU Trustees Teaching Award, 2005