Jane E. Goodman
Cultural Anthropologist
Cultural Anthropologist



Staging Cultural Encounters:
Algerian Actors Tour the United States

2020 – Indiana University Press

This multimedia ethnography tells stories about performances of cultural encounter and cultural exchange during the US tour of the Algerian theater troupe Istijmam Culturelle in 2016, which was sponsored by the Center Stage program of the US State Department. The centerpiece of the tour was the play Apples, written in the early 1990s by renowned Algerian playwright Abdelkader Alloula, who was assassinated in 1994. Video links throughout the book take readers on tour with the actors as they move from the Kennedy Center in Washington, D.C. to the large state universities of New Hampshire and Indiana, and from a tiny community theater in small-town New England to the stage of the avant-garde La MaMa Theater in New York City. The book takes up conundrums of cross-cultural encounter, challenges in translation, and audience reception, offering a frank account of the encounters with American audiences and the successes and disappointments of the experience of exchange.

Berber Culture on the World Stage:
From Village to Video


In this nuanced study of the performance of cultural identity, the author travels from contemporary Kabyle Berber communities in Algeria and France to the colonial archives, identifying the products, performances, and media through which Berber or Amazigh identity has developed. In the 1990s, with a major Islamist insurgency underway in Algeria, Amazigh cultural associations created performance forms that challenged Islamist premises while critiquing local village practices. Goodman describes the phenomenon of New Kabyle Song, a form of world music that transformed village songs for global audiences. She follows new songs as they move from their producers to the copyright agency to the Parisian stage, highlighting the networks of circulation and exchange through which Imazighen have achieved global visibility.

Bourdieu in Algeria

Bourdieu in Algeria: Colonial Politics, Ethnographic Practices, Theoretical Developments

2009 – University of Nebraska Press

The shadow cast by Pierre Bourdieu’s theory is large and well documented, but his early ethnographic work in Algeria is less well known and often overlooked. This volume, the first critical examination of Bourdieu’s early fieldwork and its impact on his larger body of social theory, represents an original and much-needed contribution to the field. Its six essays reappraise Bourdieu’s original research in light of contemporary processes and make substantial contributions to the ethnography of North Africa. The contributors are scholars of North Africa and France, and each is actively engaged with Bourdieu’s work. Bourdieu in Algeria offers a unique focus on Kabylia, Algeria; theory; history; and anthropology.

Cultural Aproach to Interpersonal Communication

A Cultural Approach to Interpersonal Communication

2012 – Wiley-Blackwell

A Cultural Approach to Interpersonal Communication presents key readings from the fields of cultural and linguistic anthropology, sociolinguistics, and communication studies that explore the ways in which interpersonal communication is socially and culturally mediated. Starting from the premise that interpersonal communication is inseparable from culture, the readings reveal the rich diversity of communicative practices of social communities within the U.S. and around the world. The fully revised second edition features several new chapters that highlight interpersonal communication in a digital world. Other readings explore interpersonal interactions in wide-ranging settings that include high school slang in California, sports talk in New Zealand, Tuareg greetings in the Sahara Desert, avatar-mediated conversations in Second Life, frat talk at a Midwest college, whispered rumors about Nevada’s top-secret Area 51, and many more. A variety of ethnographic case studies serve to heighten awareness of the reader’s own interpersonal language practices. The collection provides rich insights into the crucial role of culture in shaping understandings of interpersonal communication.