Dedrick, Elandre


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Grad Status: 
First Year Cohort

My research is concerned with child labor, narratives of development, the nature of exploitation, and the experience of economic marginalization. With a focus on West Africa, I ask what it means to exploit one’s child, examining how claims of exploitation become integral in shaping the production of childhood as a distinct period in one’s life, processes of social reproduction, and the phenomenology of economic marginalization. In asking this questions I am specifically interested in understanding the roles of discourses on labor and exploitation, the institutional practices of child outreach organizations, and the narratives of child and national development in producing meaning for the “exploited.” What does it mean to speak on behalf of children and how do these children understand and evaluate their experiences and labor? My inquiries are informed by prior coursework in development and humanitarianism and ethnographic fieldwork working with homeless individuals in New York City. I received my BA from Eugene Lang in Sociology and went on to to do graduate work in Anthropology at The New School for Social Research.