Frederick Klaits


Assistant Professor
Ph.D., Johns Hopkins University, 2002
Office: Fillmore 376
Phone: (716) 645-6388

Curriculum vitae [.pdf format]


Research Interests


Care in social practice and political theory; Regimes of value; Religion and healing; Self and other in religious practice; Humanitarianism; United States, southern Africa.


My animating questions center on why, how, and with what consequences people come to feel that their well-being is or is not bound up with that of others.  My research investigates these issues in medical, religious, and political dimensions.  I have conducted long-term fieldwork in Botswana, exploring the ways in which members of an Apostolic healing church have made efforts to sustain relationships of care and love in the context of the HIV/AIDS pandemic. Currently, with the support of a grant from the Wenner-Gren Foundation for Anthropological Research, I am exploring how members of African-American charismatic churches in Buffalo, New York understand tithing as a means of eliciting blessings for themselves and members of their families and communities under circumstances that deeply jeopardize them.  I serve as director of the Medical Anthropology lab in the Department of Anthropology at the University at Buffalo.



Selected Publications


2010 Death in a Church of Life: Moral Passion during Botswana’s Time of AIDS. Berkeley: University of California Press.

Peer Reviewed Articles and Book Chapters

2012 Christianity in Southern Africa: The Aesthetics of Well-Being. In Introducing World Christianity, Charles Farhadian, ed. London: Blackwell.

2011 Introduction: Self, Other and God in African Christianities. Journal of Religion in Africa 41(2):143-153.

2011 Asking as Giving: Apostolic Prayers and the Aesthetics of Well-Being in Botswana. Journal of Religion in Africa 41(2):206-226.

2009 Faith and the Intersubjectivity of Care in Botswana. Africa Today 56(1):3-20.

2005 Review Essay: Postcolonial Civility. Journal of Southern African Studies 31(3):649-662.

2005 The Widow in Blue: Blood and the Morality of Remembering during Botswana’s Time of AIDS. Africa: Journal of the International African Institute 75(1):46-62.

2002 Funerals and the Public Space of Sentiment in Botswana. Co-authored with Deborah Durham. Journal of Southern African Studies 28(4):773-791.

1998 Making a Good Death: AIDS and Social Belonging in an Independent Church in Gaborone. Botswana Notes and Records 30:101-119.


Undergraduate Courses Offered

APY 106 Introduction to Cultural Anthropology

APY 275 Introduction to Medical Anthropology

APY 369 Peoples and Cultures of Sub-Saharan Africa

APY 477/609 Disability and Culture


Graduate Courses Offered

APY 575 Special Topics: Gender and the Politics of Health in Africa

APY 529 Economic Anthropology


Department of Anthropology | 380 MFAC-Ellicott Complex | Buffalo, NY 14261-0005
Phone: (716) 645-2414 | Fax: (716) 645-3808
College of Arts and Sciences 2010
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