Prescott College > People > Joel Barnes

Joel Barnes



Mark is a cultural anthropologist and award-winning teacher who brings enthusiasm and humor to a wide range of courses and research interests. He is broadly interested in the comparative study of human-environment relationships across time, space, and social scale, a focus that informs courses in human ecology, ethnoecology, human evolution, cultural anthropology, and indigenous and globalization studies. His research focuses on challenges and opportunities for rural sustainability, especially in China, where twice he has conducted grant-funded, collaborative field research with undergraduate students. A recognition that cultural, biological, and linguistic diversities are mutually enhancing informs his teaching, research, and international courses with students in China and Nepal. The best questions demand tracking across traditional disciplinary boundaries, and Mark shares with his Prescott College colleagues an eagerness for interdisciplinary dialogue, cooperation, and expression. Drawing on anthropology, evolution, ecology, critical theory, and creative and humanistic perspectives, Mark pursues such interests as the relationship between mobility and sustainability, the conservation of indigenous languages, the evolution and cultural significance of breath, humans and animals, and classical Chinese poetry and calligraphy. He is also a widely published haiku poet. Mark graduated with a B.A. in Asian Studies from Dartmouth College, and with an M.A. in Cultural Anthropology and PhD. in Ecological/Environmental Anthropology from the University of Georgia. He is delighted to be a member of Prescott College’s inclusive, innovative, and sustainability and social justice oriented mission.