headshot

Casey Golomski

Department Chair, Anthropology
ASSOCIATE PROFESSOR
Program Coordinator of African & African American Studies
Phone: (603) 862-1864
Office: Anthropology, Huddleston Hall, Durham, NH 03824
Pronouns: He/him/his

Casey Golomski is an award-winning creative writer and cultural and medical anthropologist. His research centers perennial questions about life, death, and their thresholds, asking how people work through and memorialize critical events in their lives and communities. Aside from authoring many academic and literary publications, Golomski's been interviewed for and cited by media outlets such as the New York Times, New Hampshire Public Radio, New Hampshire Magazine, AlexNews, Times of eSwatini, and Business Times.

His forthcoming book, 'God's Waiting Room: Racial Reckoning at Life's End', brings readers to the end of life to glimpse what lies on other side for a country racked by racial violence. A work of creative nonfiction based on seven years of immersive research, 'God's Waiting Room' takes a daylong tour of a small-town nursing home and features the memoirs of seven astonishing individuals--Black, white, and LGBT older adults of South Africa's apartheid generation, their Black nurses of the younger born-free generation, and the untold story of Nelson Mandela's Robben Island prison nurse--to show how people primed to be enemies find grace despite the odds. Release date Dec. 5, 2024 with Rutgers University Press, and African rights to Wits University Press.

Other major writings include a critical first edition of the rediscovered and sole-surviving book manuscript of Regina Twala, one of the first Black African women anthropologists, a collaboration with Joel Cabrita and Nosipho Mngomezulu, as well as his own book 'Funeral Culture: AIDS, Work, and Cultural Change in an African Kingdom' (Indiana University Press), the first full documentary account of the AIDS epidemic in eSwatini, Africa's last absolute monarchy and the country with the world's highest HIV prevalence for more than 15 years. A moving, memorable story of people's families, churches, and businesses, Funeral Culture documents how grassroots responses to the epidemic drove innovations in care practices and counteracted the government's conservative cultural projects. The book shows how disease epidemics, whether AIDS or COVID-19, become grounds for citizens to engage in political reform through their aspirations for work.

Funded by three Fulbright Fellowships, the Wenner Gren, Reed, Mellon, and Teagle Foundations, and institutional awards and grants, his research and creative writing has been published in a range of anthropology, social science, Black and African studies, and literary journals and volumes. He was also awarded the Society for Humanistic Anthropology First Prize in Poetry. As an invited speaker on his research and approaches to writing, he has given talks at Emory, Harvard, Johns Hopkins, Wisconsin, Boston, Michigan State, Oslo, and the Universities of Johannesburg, KwaZulu-Natal, Witwatersrand, and Pretoria in South Africa, where he is also an ongoing visiting researcher.

Currently he is a board member for the journal Anthropology and Humanism and the Seacoast African American Cultural Center (SAACC) in Portsmouth, NH where he supervises internships and public cultural education through curation of their collections. For his contributions to SAACC, he also received a state-wide Spirit of NH Volunteer Service Award.

He is always happy to meet with interested students and consult for both public and private organizations.

Courses Taught

  • ANTH 411: Global Perspectives:Intro Anth
  • ANTH 500: Peoples and Cultures
  • ANTH 525: The Body: Fat, Fitness & Form
  • ANTH 610: Medical Anth:Illness & Healing
  • ANTH 680: Africana Religions
  • ANTH 685: Gendr, Sex, HIV Sub-Sahara Afr
  • ANTH 695: Global Population & Health
  • ANTH 699H: Honors Senior Thesis
  • ANTH 796: Reading and Research

Education

  • Ph.D., Anthropology, Brandeis University
  • B.A., Sociology, Saint Norbert College

Research Interests

  • African Languages/Literature
  • Aging and life course
  • Death and Dying, Behavioral/Social
  • Gender studies
  • Global Health
  • Medical humanities
  • Religious Studies
  • Sociocultural anthropology

Artistic Activities & Publications

  • Kim, B., Jeong, C. H., Park, S., Golomski, C., Corvini, M., Wilcox, J., . . . Blood, E. (2024). Quality of Life among Low-Income Older Residents in Subsidized Senior Housing: Rural vs. Suburban Comparisons. Journal of Social Service Research, 50(1), 39-53. doi:10.1080/01488376.2023.2271944

  • Golomski, C., & Laterza, V. (2023). Biopolitics from the Global South: a new generation takes on customary nationalism in eSwatini.. Afr J AIDS Res, 22(4), 257-260. doi:10.2989/16085906.2023.2270963

  • Golomski, C. (2023). The day Mugabe died. Anthropology and Humanism, 48(2), 355-357. doi:10.1111/anhu.12433

  • Golomski, C. (2023). Gentleness.. Med Anthropol Q, 37(2), 98-101. doi:10.1111/maq.12751

  • Meek, L. A., Neely, A. H., Chudakova, T., Craig, S. R., & Golomski, C. (2023). Beyond the Limits: Medicine, Healing, and Medical Anthropology - Conversation, Parts I-V. Medical Anthropology Quarterly, 37(2). doi:10.1111/maq.12748

  • Laterza, V., & Golomski, C. (2023). Customary nationalism in crisis: protest, identity and politics in eSwatini. Journal of Contemporary African Studies, 41(2), 119-140. doi:10.1080/02589001.2023.2234103

  • Golomski, C. (2022). Visiting Hours: Spacetimes of Human-Animal Interaction in South African Elder Care. MEDICAL ANTHROPOLOGY QUARTERLY, 36(2), 217-236. doi:10.1111/maq.12702

  • Golomski, C. (2022). Deathnography: Writing, Reading, and Radical Mourning. In S. Dawdy, & T. Kneese (Eds.), The New Death: Mortality and Death Care in the Twenty-First Century (pp. 105-124). Santa Fe: University of New Mexico Press. Retrieved from https://www.unmpress.com/books/new-death/9780826363459

  • “Afrofuturism 2.0: Exploring Justice through Beauty,” exhibit co-designer and supervisor, Seacoast African American Cultural Center and Green Acre Baha’i (2022). Retrieved from https://www.nhpr.org/latest-from-nhpr/2022-05-28/give-back-nh-afrofuturism

  • Golomski, C., Corvini, M., Kim, B., Wilcox, J., & Valcourt, S. (2022). Aspects of ICT connectivity among older adults living in rural subsidized housing: reassessing the digital divide. JOURNAL OF ENABLING TECHNOLOGIES, 16(1), 17-27. doi:10.1108/JET-12-2020-0052

  • Reed, A. R., & Golomski, C. (2022). Ambiguous interventions: The social consequences of assistance in the field. ETHNOGRAPHY. doi:10.1177/14661381211067449

  • Golomski, C. (2021). 12. Dark Matter: Formations of Death Pollution in Southeastern African Funerals. In Embodying Black Religions in Africa and Its Diasporas (pp. 297-316). Duke University Press. doi:10.1515/9781478013112-015

  • “Fashion Forward: Africana Style,” exhibit co-curator and designer, in conjunction with T. Zaidi’s (2020) Sapeurs: Ladies and Gentlemen of the Congo (Kehrer-Verlag), Seacoast African American Cultural Center (2021). Retrieved from https://www.seacoastonline.com/

  • Kim, B., Park, S., Golomsky, C., Corvini, M., Wilder, A., Wilcox, J., & Winburn, A. (2020). Multilevel Factors for Life Satisfaction Among Residents in Non-Urban Subsidized Senior Housing. Innovation in Aging, 4(Supplement_1), 109. doi:10.1093/geroni/igaa057.360

  • Golomski, C. (2020). Countermythologies: Queering Lives in a Southern African Gay and Lesbian Pentecostal Church. TRANSFORMING ANTHROPOLOGY, 28(2), 155-168. doi:10.1111/traa.12180

  • Golomski, C. (2020). Society for Humanistic Anthropology 2019 Writing Awards. Anthropology and Humanism, 45(1), 139-141. doi:10.1111/anhu.12277

  • "Obama: An Ancestral Legacy,” supervising exhibit curator and co-designer, in conjunction with Pete Souza’s (2017) "Obama: An Intimate Portrait" (Little, Brown and Co.), Seacoast African American Cultural Center (2020). Retrieved from https://www.seacoastonline.com/

  • Golomski, C., & Dlamini, G. S. (2020). Beautiful Blessings: LGBTIQA Christians’ Reproductive and Parenting Aspirations.. In N. Mkhwanazi, & L. Manderson (Eds.), Connected Lives: Households, Families, Health, and Care in Contemporary South Africa. (pp. 38-44). Cape Town: Human Sciences Research Council Press. Retrieved from https://www.hsrcpress.ac.za/books/connected-lives

  • Golomski, C. (2020). Greying mutuality: race and joking relations in a South African nursing home. AFRICA, 90(2), 273-292. doi:10.1017/S0001972019001049

  • Golomski, C. (2020). "Yesterday is History, Tomorrow is a Mystery": Dying in South African Frail Care. ANTHROPOLOGY & AGING, 41(2), 9-23. doi:10.5195/aa.2020.243

  • Golomski, C. (2019). Interrogating traditionalism: gender and Swazi Culture in HIV/AIDS policy. “Customary Nationalism in Crisis: Protest, Identity and Politics in Eswatini” special issue, edited by V. Laterza and C. Golomski. Journal of Contemporary African Studies, 41(2), 183-198. doi:10.1080/02589001.2019.1701184

  • Golomski, C. (2019). Thumb War. Anthropology and Humanism, 44(2), 194-197. doi:10.1111/anhu.12249

  • Heavy Metal Africa: Art and Metallurgy of Africa,” supervising exhibit curator and designer with D. Toland, M. Maksy, C. Gross-Santos, Seacoast African American Cultural Center (2019). Retrieved from https://www.fosters.com/

  • Wilder, A., Kim, B., Wilcox, J., Golomski, C., Corvini, M., & Winburn, A. (2018). Perceived and Unmet Needs for Health and Social Services in Publicly Subsidized Senior Housing. Innovations in Aging, 2((Supplement 1)), 994. Retrieved from https://academic.oup.com/innovateage/article/2/suppl_1/994/5183829

  • Golomski, C. (2018). Funeral Culture: AIDS, Work, and Cultural Change in an African Kingdom. Bloomington: Indiana University Press. Retrieved from https://iupress.org/9780253036452/funeral-culture/

  • “Guinea to Great Bay: Afro Atlantic Lives, Culture and History,” exhibit curator & designer, Seacoast African American Cultural Center (2018).

  • Golomski, C. (2018). Work of a Nation: Christian Funerary Ecumenism and Institutional Disruption in Swaziland. JOURNAL OF SOUTHERN AFRICAN STUDIES, 44(2), 299-314. doi:10.1080/03057070.2018.1421443

  • Golomski, C. (2018). Elder Care and Private Health Insurance in South Africa: The Pathos of Race-Class. MEDICAL ANTHROPOLOGY, 37(4), 311-326. doi:10.1080/01459740.2017.1417279

  • Golomski, C. (2017). Authority. MEDICAL HUMANITIES, 43(3), 206. doi:10.1136/medhum-2017-011194

  • Golomski, C. (2017). “My Mother Got Annoyed”i. Annals of Global Health, 83(2), 405. doi:10.1016/j.aogh.2017.03.002

  • Golomski, C., & Nyawo, S. (2017). Christians' cut: popular religion and the global health campaign for medical male circumcision in Swaziland. CULTURE HEALTH & SEXUALITY, 19(8), 844-858. doi:10.1080/13691058.2016.1267409

  • Golomski, C. (2016). Game Walk at Pilanesberg. Anthropology and Humanism, 41(2), 216-217. doi:10.1111/anhu.12131

  • Golomski, C. (2016). Religion and Migration: Cases for a Global Material Ethics. AFRICAN STUDIES, 75(3), 449-462. doi:10.1080/00020184.2016.1193379

  • Golomski, C. (2016). Outliving love: marital estrangement in an African insurance market. SOCIAL DYNAMICS-A JOURNAL OF AFRICAN STUDIES, 42(2), 304-320. doi:10.1080/02533952.2016.1197510

  • Golomski, C. (2016). Polygamy, Polygyny, and Polyandry. In The Wiley Blackwell Encyclopedia of Gender and Sexuality Studies (pp. 1-3). doi:10.1002/9781118663219.wbegss106

  • Golomski, C. (2016). Purity versus Pollution. In The Wiley Blackwell Encyclopedia of Gender and Sexuality Studies (pp. 1-2). doi:10.1002/9781118663219.wbegss115

  • Golomski, C. (2016). Risk, Mistake, and Generational Contest in Bodily Rituals of Swazi Jerikho Zionism. JOURNAL OF CONTEMPORARY RELIGION, 31(3), 351-364. doi:10.1080/13537903.2016.1206247

  • Golomski, C. (2015). Urban cemeteries in Swaziland: materialising dignity. ANTHROPOLOGY SOUTHERN AFRICA, 38(3-4), 360-371. doi:10.1080/23323256.2015.1087322

  • Golomski, C. (2015). wearing memories: clothing and the global lives of mourning in swaziland. MATERIAL RELIGION, 11(3), 303-327. doi:10.1080/17432200.2015.1082719

  • Golomski, C. (2015). Compassion technology: Life insurance and the remaking of kinship in Swaziland's age of HIV. AMERICAN ETHNOLOGIST, 42(1), 81-96. doi:10.1111/amet.12117

  • Golomski, C. (2014). Generational inversions: 'working' for social reproduction amid HIV in Swaziland. AJAR-AFRICAN JOURNAL OF AIDS RESEARCH, 13(4), 351-359. doi:10.2989/16085906.2014.961942