Dr Grégory Deshoullière

Dr Grégory Deshoullière

Postdoctoral Researcher

Department of Anthropology

Room No
English, French, Spanish
Key Expertise
Amazonia, Ecuador, Latin America

About me

Gregory is a specialist in the anthropology of Lowland South America while engaging with theoretical frameworks that enable cross-regional comparison and dialogue with other social sciences.

Based on long-term fieldwork in Amazonian Ecuador, he investigates the collective and personal experiences of managing witchcraft, the conditions of transformation of an esoteric Amerindian tradition, and the various uses of writing along a neo-colonial frontier.

As part of the first topic, he explores how people living in village communities of relatively recent creation deal with uncertainty related to witchcraft at a time of increasing reliance on state-derived institutions and market exchanges. Within the second topic, Grégory analyses the tension between a shamanism understood as an esoteric mode of action at the service of the defensive and offensive interests of a person, and a shamanism understood as the possession of a fixed corpus of cosmological knowledge characteristic of an ethnic group and at the service of the common good. Concerning the third topic, Grégory investigates how different institutions shape writing as a technique to transmit knowledge and as a technique to establish power. He focuses on the diverse textual ideologies that underpin the creation and uses of magical grimoires, bureaucratic documents, cultural compilations and various kinds of autobiographic writing.

Gregory engages in inclusive collaboration at each step of the research process. As part of collaborative work, he participated in documenting the Jivaroan Shuar oral traditions in the Andean foothill and Amazonian forest of south-eastern Ecuador.

His contribution to the project “Justice, Morality, and the State in Amazonia” compares the different regimes of justice which coexist among Aénts chicham people (Shuar and Shiwiar).

Selected publications

2019. C'est l'intention qui compte. Variations sur le thème de la malignité en pays shuar (piémont amazonien de l'Équateur). In Au seuil de la Forêt. Hommage à Philippe Descola. Cometti, G., Le Roux, P., Manicone, T., Martin, N. (eds.). Mirebeau-sur-Bèze: Tautem, 257–282.

2019. An Indigenous Writing Boom: Cultural Experts and the Creation of a Scholarly TraditionTipití: Journal of the Society for the Anthropology of Lowland South America, 16(2), accepted March 2018. (Co-authored Natalia Buitrón).

2019 Singularity on the Margins: Autobiographical Writings among the Shuar of Ecuadorian Amazonia. Tipití: Journal of the Society for the Anthropology of Lowland South America, 16(2), accepted March 2018. (Co-authored Natalia Buitrón).

2019. Acerca de la Declaración sobre el cambio de nombre del conjunto Jívaro. Journal de la société des américanistes, 2(105), 167–179. Link: https://journals.openedition.org/jsa/17370

2019. Exchange and co-production of knowledges: reflections from Amazonia. Anthropology of this Century, 24. (Co-authored with Rita Astuti and Natalia Buitrón Arias). Link: http://aotcpress.com/articles/exchange-coproduction-knowledges-reflections-amazonia/

2017. “Shamanism, economic development and state politics: notes from an association of Shuar shamans (Ecuador)” [Spanish], In Iniciativas empresariales y culturales. Estudios de casos en América Indigena. Bilhaut A.-G. & Macedo S. (Eds.), Quito: Abya Yala/Fabriq’am. 

2017. “Miss and beauty in the indigenous America. Introduction to the Special Issue” [French], Journal de la Société des Américanistes, 103-1. (Co-authored with Magda Helena Dziubinska). Link: http://jsa.revues.org/14915 

2016. “A first road in the Transkutukú. Some remarks on the relationship between ethnicity, territory and economic development in the epoch of the Citizen Revolution (Ecuador)” [French], Journal de la Société des Américanistes, 102-2, 207-234. Link: http://jsa.revues.org/14823 

2016. “Vanity of books. Magical variations in Jivaroan territory” [French], In Hypalampuses Hemeras à la pointe du jour. Collectif. Paris: Éditions Gruppen, 44-55. 

2015. “Anémat, Jivaroan ceremonial dialogue” [French], In Repartir de zéro. Déléage, P. (Auth.), Paris: Éditions Mix, 46-52.