Jaymelee Kim, Ph.D. candidate in anthropology, was recently awarded a very prestigious and highly competitive Wenner-Gren Foundation for Anthropological Research Dissertation Fieldwork Grant. Her doctoral research explores the current justice framework being used to address human rights violations that occurred in Indian Residential Schools in Canada. These violations included abuses, deaths, burials, forced removal, and forcible assimilation of seven generations of Native children who populated these schools, which operated until 1996.
Preliminary fieldwork took her to Canada in the summers of 2011 and 2012, with the latter funded by the UT W.K. McClure Scholarship for the Study of World Affairs. More specifically, her research addresses the application of international transitional justice tools (e.g. commemoration, truth and reconciliation commission, reparation, forensic investigation of unmarked graves) in this unique Western context. Kim’s successful proposal to Wenner-Gren developed from a semester-long course on “Research Design and Proposal Writing” taught by Graciela Cabana and Tricia Hepner. Kim is co-advised by Tricia Hepner and Dawnie Steadman and is a wonderful exemplar of the kind of graduate student that Anthropology’s program in Disasters, Displacement, and Human Rights (DDHR) is capable of producing.