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2022_Weiland_500px_Behrends-Andrea Andrea Behrends

Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences
Anthropology in Africa

Scientific career

  • Apr. 2019 - Sep. 2023: Professorship for Anthropology in Africa at the University of Bayreuth
  • Oct. 2017 - Mar. 2019: Visiting professorship at the Institute for Social and Cultural Anthropology, Free University of Berlin
  • Habilitation: Book manuscript 'Staying. Practices of displacement and emplacement in an African borderland' (in English)
  • Oct. 2016 - Jul. 2017: Visiting professorship at the Institute for Cultural and Social Anthropology, University of Vienna
  • Oct. 2014 - Jul. 2015: Assistant Professor at the Institute for Anthropology and Philosophy, University of Halle-Wittenberg
  • Oct. 2013 - Mar. 2014: Assistant Professor at the Institute for Anthropology and Philosophy, University of Hamburg
  • Apr. 2012 - Oct. 2016: Project leader of a research project funded by the DFG on "Oil and social change in Niger and Chad"
  • since 2011: Member of the LOST research group
  • Jan. 2008 - 03 Jul. 2008: Team leader of a research project on "Origins of violence, conflict mediation and reparation: a social-anthropological study on Dar Sila"(with Dr. Christine Pawlitzky, Dr. Babett Jànszky and Prof. Stephen P. Reyna), funded by the European Commission in Chad
  • 2007: Founding member of an anthropological research centre in Chad (Centre de Recherche en Anthropologie et Sciences Humaines, CRASH)
  • Oct. 2006 - Mar. 2011: Scientific coordinator and researcher in a cooperative research project on "Travelling Models in Conflict Management", funded by the Volkswagen Foundation, affiliated to the Institute of Anthropology and Philosophy at the University of Halle-Wittenberg
  • 2000-2006: Postdoctoral researcher at the Max Planck Institute for Social Anthropology Research, Department I: Conflict and Integration
  • 2000-2001: Research association with the University of N'Djamena, Chad
  • 2000: PhD in social anthropology (magna cum laude): "Tightrope walking. Women from Northern Ghana between education, profession and social conventions"
  • 1997-1998: Research association with the Institute of African Studies, University of Ghana, Legon
  • 1995: MA in Anthropology
  • Oct. 1991 - Feb. 1992: Research association with the Institute of African Studies, University of Ghana, Legon
  • 1987-1995: Studies at the Free University of Berlin and Technische Universität Berlin in Anthropology (major subject), Development Sociology (minor subject), and Urban and Regional Planning (minor subject)

Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences
Anthropology in Africa

Research areas

For 20 years, I have built up my research focus on mobility, belonging, conflict, intervention and resources through research projects, publications and teaching. One major interest lies in how people live through so-called crisis situations by continuously and flexibly adapting knowledge and by acting on and reacting to new circumstances. Linking with this ‘lifeworlds in crisis’ research, my new project is about digital lifeworlds in African contexts, analyzing how digitalization influences people’s everyday lives in relation to, for instance, innovation hubs, mobile phone applications, security regimes, biometric registering or devices like robots, drones or smart technologies. Using approaches of the anthropology of knowledge and of feminist- and post-colonial studies, my work is about processes of transformation, growth and development, especially with regard to anticipations and visions of the future.

At the same time, my research is concerned with exploring the potential of diversity in coexistence, including in situations of violence and conflict. I investigate the temporal, relational and spatial contingency of social categories and the ways in which their 'members' strive for belonging and distinction. In this respect, I incorporate the fields of gender studies and feminist anthropology and the social study of science and technology (STS) in my teaching, in research exercises and in the supervision of dissertations.

Inspired by the concepts developed in critical practice theory as well as the history of anthropological theory, I pursue ontological and epistemological questions concerning the 'global south'.

Research and support interests

Politics, lifeworlds, mobility(ies), belonging, crisis, economy, resources, digitalization, transformation processes, emplacement.

Current research projects

Digital states and markets. Africa and the world.

Piece and conflict research

Andrea Behrends is a member of the network of researchers who work within Peace and Conflict Research at the University of Bayreuth.


Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences
Anthropology in Africa



Behrends, Andrea; Abdelbanat, Oumar; Neneck, Allah-Kauis; Hoinathy, Remadji
Death of the Chadian President Idriss Déby : Where Were You When You Heard the News?
in African Arguments
28. April 2021
https://africanarguments.org/2021/04/death-of-the- ...

Behrends, Andrea
Krieg, Flucht, Vertreibung : Ungewissheit in der Grenzregion zwischen Tschad und Sudan
in Spektrum volume 17 (2021) issue 1. - page 58-63

Behrends, Andrea
Die Verwandlung von sudanesischen Geflüchteten in tschadische Flüchtlingsbürger:innen : Eine bü ...
Humandifferenzierung : Disziplinäre Perspektiven und empirische Sondierungen
Weilerswist : Velbrück, 2021. - page 106-132


Behrends, Andrea
Renegotiating humanitarian governance : challenging invisibility in the Chad–Sudan borderlands ...
Invisibility in African Displacements : From Structural Marginalization to Strategies of Avoidance
New York : Zed Book Press, 2020. - page 19-35


Behrends, Andrea; Fall, Babacar; Hoinathy, Remadji
Lifeworlds in Crisis : Covid-19 Governmental Restrictions in Senegal and Chad
in African Arguments
06. Mai 2020
https://africanarguments.org/2020/05/06/lifeworlds ...


Schritt, Jannik; Behrends, Andrea
"Western" and "Chinese" Oil Zones : Petro-Infrastructures and the Emergence of New Trans-territ ...
Spatial Practices : territory, border and infrastructure in Africa
Leiden : Brill, 2018. - page 211-230
doi:10.1163/9789004367012_013 ...


Behrends, Andrea; Hoinathy, Remadji
The Devil's Money : A Multi-level Approach to Acceleration and Turbulence in Oil-Producing Sout ...
in Social Analysis volume 61 (2017) issue 3. - page 56-72
doi:10.3167/sa.2017.610304 ...


Behrends, Andrea
Kein Segen, nirgends
in Forschung : Das Magazin der Deutschen Forschungsgemeinschaft volume 41 (2016) issue 1. - page 18-23
doi:10.1002/fors.201690013 ...

Behrends, Andrea
No Boon At All
in German Research volume 38 (2016) issue 3. - page 16-20
doi:10.1002/germ.201790001 ...


Behrends, Andrea
The Long History of Conflict, Integration and Changing Alliances on the Darfur/Chad Border
Emerging Orders in the Sudans
Mankon, Bamenda : Langaa Research & Publ. CIG, 2015. - page 39-68

Behrends, Andrea; Park, Sung-Joon; Rottenburg, Richard
Replik auf Röhl
in Zeitschrift für Rechtssoziologie volume 35 (2015) issue 2. - page 313-317
doi:10.1515/zfrs-2015-0208 ...


Hoinathy, Remadji; Behrends, Andrea
Does Rationality Travel? : Translations of a World Bank Model for Fair Oil Revenue Distribution ...
Travelling Models in African Conflict Management
Leiden : Brill, 2014. - page 76-91
doi:10.1163/9789004274099_004 ...

Behrends, Andrea
Securing Livelihoods : Economic Practice in the Darfur-Chad Borderlands
Displacement economies in Africa : paradoxes of crisis and creativity
London : Zed, 2014

Behrends, Andrea; Park, Sung-Joon; Rottenburg, Richard
Travelling Models : Introducing an Analytical Concept to Globalisation Studies
Travelling Models in African Conflict Management
Leiden : Brill, 2014. - page 1-40
doi:10.1163/9789004274099_002 ...


Travelling Models in African Conflict Management : Translating Technologies of Social Ordering
publ: Behrends, Andrea; Park, Sung-Joon; Rottenburg, Richard
Leiden : Brill, 2014 . - (Africa-Europe Group for Interdisciplinary Studies; 13)


Behrends, Andrea; Lentz, Carola
Education, Careers, and Home Ties : The Ethnography of an Emerging Middle Class from Northern G ...
in Zeitschrift für Ethnologie volume 137 (2012) issue 2. - page 139-164

Eckert, Julia; Behrends, Andrea; Dafinger, Andreas
Governance - and the State : An Anthropological Approach
in EthnoScripts volume 14 (2012) issue 1. - page 14-34

Behrends, Andrea; Pauli, Julia
Zwischen Charisma und Korruption : Kontinuitäten und Brüche in der Auseinandersetzung mit Elite ...
50 Jahre Unabhängigkeit in Afrika : Kontinuitäten, Brüche, Perspektiven
Köln : Köppe, 2012. - page 301-320


Reyna, Stephen P.; Behrends, Andrea
The Crazy Curse and Crude Domination : Towards an Anthropology of Oil
Crude Domination : An anthropology of oil
New York : Berghahn Books, 2011. - page 3-29


Crude Domination : An Anthropology of Oil
publ: Behrends, Andrea; Reyna, Stephen P.; Schlee, Günther
New York : Berghahn Books, 2011. - VI, 325 page . - (Dislocations; 9)

Behrends, Andrea
Fighting for Oil when there is no Oil yet : The Darfur-Chad border
Crude Domination : An anthropology of oil
New York : Berghahn Books, 2011. - page 81-106

Behrends, Andrea; Schareika, Nikolaus
Öl, Staat, Ressourcenfluch
Auf dem Boden der Tatsachen : Festschrift für Thomas Bierschenk
Köln : Köppe, 2011. - page 465-476


Behrends, Andrea; Schareika, Nikolaus
Significations of Oil in Africa : What (more) Can Anthropologists Contribute to the Study of Oi ...
in Suomen Antropologi volume 35 (2010) issue 1. - page 83-86


Behrends, Andrea; Schlee, Günther
Lokale Konfliktstrukturen in Darfur und im Osten des Tschad oder: Was ist ethnisch an ethnische ...
Krisenmanagement in Afrika : Erwartungen, Möglichkeiten, Grenzen
Wien : Böhlau, 2009. - page 159-178 . - (Internationale Sicherheit und Konfliktmanagement; 3)


Reyna, Stephen; Behrends, Andrea
The crazy curse and crude domination : toward an anthropology of oil
in Focaal (2008) issue 52. - page 3-17
doi:10.3167/fcl.2008.520101 ...

Behrends, Andrea
Fighting for oil when there is no oil yet
in Focaal (2008) issue 52. - page 39-56
doi:10.3167/fcl.2008.520103 ...


Behrends, Andrea; Heiß, Jan-Patrick
Crisis in Chad : Approaching the Anthropological Gap
in Sociologus volume 57 (2007) issue 1. - page 1-9

Behrends, Andrea
The Darfur Conflict and the Chad/Sudan Border : Regional Context and Local Re-Configurations
in Sociologus volume 57 (2007) issue 1. - page 99-131


Behrends, Andrea
Conflict, Violence, and Integration : Transnational and Local Fields of Governance on the Chad/ ...
Halle/Saale, 2005 . - (Max Planck Institute for Social Anthropology : Report; 2004-2005)
https://www.eth.mpg.de/pubs/institute-reports/pdf/ ...


Behrends, Andrea
reviewed by: Ruf, Urs Peter: Ending Slavery : Hierarchy, Dependency and Gender in Central Mauritania. Bielef ...
in Zeitschrift für Ethnologie volume 128 (2003) issue 1. - page 163-165


Eckert, Julia; Dafinger, Andreas; Behrends, Andrea
Towards an Anthropology of Governance
Halle/Saale, 2003 . - (Max Planck Institute for Social Anthropology : Report; 2002-2003)
https://www.eth.mpg.de/pubs/institute-reports/pdf/ ...


Behrends, Andrea
Drahtseilakte : Frauen aus Nordghana zwischen Bildung, Beruf und gesellschaftlichen Konventione ...
Frankfurt am Main : Brandes & Apsel, 2002. - 267 page

Behrends, Andrea
reviewed by: Hagberg, Sten ; Tengan, Alexis B. (Eds.): Bonds and Boundaries in Northern Ghana and Southern B ...
in American Ethnologist volume 29 (2002) issue 1. - page 218-219
doi:10.1525/ae.2002.29.1.218 ...

Behrends, Andrea
"Pogminga" - The "Proper Dagara Woman" : an Encounter between Christian thought and Dagara Conc ...
in Journal of Religion in Africa volume 32 (2002) issue 2. - page 231-253
doi:10.1163/157006602320292924 ...


Behrends, Andrea
reviewed by: Fuest, Veronica: "A job, a shop, and loving business" : Lebensweisen gebildeter Frauen in Liber ...
in Africa volume 71 (2001) issue 2. - page 323-325
doi:10.3366/afr.2001.71.2.323 ...


Behrends, Andrea
Refugees in Dar Masalit (Chad) : Strategies of Integration and Dissociation
Halle/Saale, 2001 . - (Max Planck Institute for Social Anthropology : Report; 1999-2001)
https://www.eth.mpg.de/pubs/institute-reports/pdf/ ...


Behrends, Andrea
reviewed by: Lentz, Carola: Die Konstruktion von Ethnizität : eine politische Geschichte Nord-West Ghanas, 1 ...
in Social Anthropology volume 8 (2000) issue 1. - page 87-88
doi:10.1111/j.1469-8676.2000.tb00210.x ...


Behrends, Andrea
"Faule Städterinnen" und "unterdrückte Dörflerinnen" : Stereotypen und Verhaltensideale von Fra ...
Land vermessen : Denkmalschutz für das Land?
Berlin : Ästhetik & Kommunikation e.V., 1999. - page 51-58 . - (Ästhetik & Kommunikation; 106)


Behrends, Andrea
reviewed by: Clark, Gracia: Onions are my Husband : Survival and Accumulation by West African market women. ...
in Social Anthropology volume 6 (1998) issue 1. - page 145-146
doi:10.1111/j.1469-8676.1998.tb00387.x ...


Behrends, Andrea
Konstruktionen von Weiblichkeit : Eine vergleichende Studie städtischer und ländlicher Dagara-F ...
Die Pragmatik des Gesellschaftsvergleichs
Leipzig : Leipziger Universitätsverlag, 1997. - page 69-82 . - (Erträge des Gesellschaftsvergleichs; 2)


Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences
Anthropology in Africa

Andrea Behrends
Professor for Anthropology in Africa

University of Bayreuth

Universitätsstraße 30
​D-95447 Bayreuth

E-mail: andrea.behrends@uni-bayreuth.de

Webmaster: Univ.Prof.Dr. Andrea Behrends

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