Katie Kilroy-Marac

Katie Kilroy-Marac, a white woman with reddish-brown hair, wearing a black top and a necklace of polished stone circles
Associate Professor
Telephone number
Building HL 334

Katie Kilroy-Marac received her PhD from Columbia University. Her research considers the social history of psychiatric thought, the evolution and naturalization of psychiatric categories, and the spaces in which local understandings of illness and suffering come into contact with (Western) psychiatric models. Her first book, An Impossible Inheritance: Postcolonial Psychiatry and the Work of Memory in a West African Clinic (University of California Press, 2019) is based on fieldwork conducted at the Fann Psychiatric Clinic in Dakar, Senegal.  Her current ethnographic research examines the emergence of hoarding as mental disorder, public health hazard, and media spectacle in North America.  Following her interest in how people attempt to craft ethical lives through consumption (and its regulation) has also led her to embark upon a critical investigation of the Tiny House Movement.

Teaching Interests

Culture and Society in Africa; Anthropology and Psychology; Culture, Mental Illness, and Psychiatry; Engaging the Archives; The Anthropology of Hope

Research Interests

Memory and history, temporality, cross-cultural and transcultural psychiatry, postcolonial transformations, middle figures, regimes of care/caretaking, experimental ethnography, archive-based art, material culture and object worlds, consumerism and consumption-critical lifestyle movements, order and disorder, houses and housing security; Senegal, Canada, France, US

Selected Recent Publications

2023      Kilroy-Marac, Katie. “Topoanalysis: Hoarding, Memory, and the Materialization of Kinship.” In Of Hoarding and Housekeeping : Material Kinship and Domestic Space in Anthropological Perspective, ed. Sasha Newell. Oxford: Berghahn Press.

2022      Kilroy-Marac, Katie. “Hoarding and the Substance of Kinship.” Anthropological Quarterly 95(4):761-784.

2019    Kilroy-Marac, Katie. An Impossible Inheritance: Postcolonial Psychiatry and the Work of Memory in a West African Clinic. Berkeley: University of California Press.
- Winner of the 2020 Labrecque-Lee Book Prize (Awarded by the Canadian Anthropology Society [CASCA])

2018    Kilroy-Marac, Katie. “An Order of Distinction (Or, How to Tell a Collection from a Hoard).”  Journal of Material Culture 23(1): 20-38.

2016    Kilroy-Marac, Katie. “A Magical Reorientation of the Modern: Professional Organizers and Thingly Care in Contemporary North America." Cultural Anthropology       31(3):   439-458.