Academic Profile

Dr. Cash is a lecturer in the ICC Course “Science and Technology for Humanity”. She received her BA from the University of Chicago and her PhD in Anthropology from Indiana University. Prior to coming to NTU, she held a postdoctoral position as senior researcher at the Max Planck Institute for Social Anthropology; and taught at the Strate School of Design (Singapore), University College London, and the University of Pittsburgh. Dr. Cash also worked for many years as an editor, eventually setting up her own small company in Singapore before returning to full-time teaching.
20210520_112015 crop.jpg picture
As a socio-cultural anthropologist, Dr. Cash is broadly interested in how societies and cultures undertake and respond to change; and which elements of past values and traditions are made meaningful in the present. She is a specialist on East and Southeast Europe, with long-term fieldwork in urban and rural Moldova, and her previous research has focused on the challenges of the postsocialist (Post-Cold War) transition with an examination of themes including multiethnicity and cultural policy, the meanings of work, the ritual dimensions of economy, as well as the recurrence of poverty, underdevelopment, and the unevenness of cultural revival. Food and wine, hospitality, charity, and memory have been regular focal points in her published work.

She is carrying these questions forward in developing research on South-East/South-East Futures.
  • Villages on Stage: Folklore and Nationalism in the Republic of Moldova. Berlin: LIT Verlag, 2011.

  • “The Changing Value of Food: Calculating Moldova’s Poverty,” In Food Values in Europe: Economies, Ideologies, and Power in Practice, Krista Harper and Valerie Siniscalchi, eds.. London: Bloomsbury, 2019.

  • “History, Memory, Morality: Moldova’s Missing Germans.” Revue d’études comparatives Est-Ouest, vol. 47(1-2): 199-229, 2016.

  • “How Much is Enough? Household Provisioning, Self-Sufficiency and Social Status in Rural Moldova,” In Oikos and Market: Explorations in Self-Sufficiency after Socialism, Stephen Gudeman and Chris Hann, eds. New York and Oxford: Berghahn, 2015.

  • With Ludmila Cojocaru, “Approaching Festive Culture after Socialism: Historical Ruptures, Continuities of Memory.” Interstiţio: East European Review of Historical Anthropology. Winter 2014.

  • “Performing Hospitality in Moldova: Ambiguous, Alternative, and Undeveloped Models of National Identity.” History and Anthropology, vol. 24(1):56-77, 2013.

  • Charity or Remembrance? Practices of Pomană in Rural Moldova. Occasional Paper, Max Planck Institute for Social Anthropology, Halle, 2013.

  • “Capitalism, Nationalism, and Religious Revival: Transformations of the Ritual Cycle in Postsocialist Moldova.” Anthropology of East Europe Review, 29 (2):181-203, 2011.

  • “The Social Role of Art and Artists in Post-Soviet Moldova: Cultural Policy, Institutional Reform, and Europeanization.” Europe-Asia Studies, 59(8): 1405-1427, 2007.

  • “Origins, Memory, and Identity: “Villages” and the Politics of Nationalism in the Republic of Moldova.” East European Politics and Societies, Fall (November) 21(4): 588-610. 2007.

  • With Katherine Metzo, “Whither the Area in Area Studies? How Students Teach Us to Rethink the Boundaries of Eastern Europe.” Journal for the Society of the Anthropology of Europe, 6(1):3-16 (Summer), 2006.