Pilapa Esara Carroll

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PhD, Brown University

Associate Professor
Department of Anthropology

  • Fall 2017 Class Schedule:

    • ANT 416 Exiled to America: M, W & F - 2:30 - 3:20 pm
    • ANT 470 Professional Development: M, W & F - 12:20 - 1:10 pm
    • ANT 471 Anthropological Theory: M, W & F - 10:10 - 11:00 am

  • Fall 2017 Office Hours:

    • W 8:30-10am; F 8:30-10am & 3:30-4:30pm or by appointment

Courses Taught:

C-13A, Cooper Hall
Office Phone:
(585) 395-5345
Curriculum vitae:
Esara-Carroll CV

Courses Taught

  • ANT 201 Introduction to Cultural Anthropology
  • ANT 220 Ethnographic Experience
  • ANT 305 Sex, Gender & Power
  • ANT 315 The Migration Experience: a cultural perspective
  • ANT 321 Culture Change and Globalization
  • ANT 368 Forced from Home: Refugees, IDPs & Asylees
  • ANT 383 Research Methods in Cultural Anthropology
  • ANT 416/516 Exiled to America: Refugee Resettlement Experiences
  • ANT 470 Anthropology as a Profession
  • ANT 471 Anthropology Theory

Areas of Specialization

Issues of displacement and refugee resettlement; ethnographic documentary production; gender inequality and social difference; social practices of marriage and intimacy; processes of migration and identity negotiations; economic development and globalization; Asia and its diasporas

Current Research Projects

Persons of refugee-status arrive in the U.S. to start their lives anew as survivors of violence and persecution. New York state is ranked third in the nation as a destination for newly-arrived refugees. The majority of these arrivals settle in western New York (95% in 2013, according to BRIA) and 15% of them call Monroe County "home". How do refugees start over in Rochester, NY? What are their adaptation needs and challenges? With generous funding from the Reed Foundation and partnerships with local non-profits, the Supporting Adult Refugee Students study is a community-based project that seeks to answer this question by focusing on language-educational needs and experiences.

In the past, my research has focused on social change and economic development in Thailand. My ethnographic documentary entitled, "Day In, Day Out: Selling Food in Bangkok" offers a window into Thailand's urban foodscape. Life for the average laborer in Bangkok can be difficult. Many rent single rooms without kitchen facilities. To meet their everyday nutritional and material needs, working class residents turn to the street, to local food vendors and sidewalk merchants. The documentary explores the mundane complexities and challenges of being a small-time Bangkok entrepreneur based in an urban slum. I have also studied social change in Thailand through the lens of intimate relationships and changing notions of marriage and family.

Please check out my research: Supporting Adult Refugee Students Project
I am looking to hire translators and interpreters if you are interested.



Esara, P. (2014) Loving Warm Families: Exploring gender equality within Thai marriages. Intersections: Gender and Sexuality in Asia and the Pacific, 35.

Esara, P. (2013). The Refugee Adaptation Project: Preliminary Report. Executive Summary (translated into Burmese with English text) with translation by Pri Lahtaw and a photo courtesy of Sarah Ann Jump.

Ferguson, J. (Ch. ed.), Cassaniti, J., Costa, L., Johnson, A., Johsnson, T., Esara, P., Kitiarsa, P., Musikawong, S., and Zeamer, E. (2013) “Thailand Chapter”. In J. Barker, E. Harms, and J. Lindquist (Eds.), Southeast Asian Figures of Modernity. Honolulu: University of Hawaii Press.

Esara, P. (2012, June) Moral Scrutiny, Marital Inequality: Cohabitation in Bangkok, Thailand. The Asian Pacific Journal of Anthropology, 13:3:211-27.

P. Esara, (2011, December) [Review of the book Marketing Dreams, Manufacturing Heroes: The Transnational Labor Brokering of Filipino Workers, by A. R. Guevarra] Gender & Society, 25:6.

Esara, P. (2009) Imagining the Western Husband: Thai womens' desires for matrimony, status and beauty. Ethnos, 74:3:403-426

Esara, P. (2004) Women Will Keep the Household: The Mediation of Work and Family by Female Labor Migrants in Bangkok. Journal of Critical Asian Studies 36:2:199-216.


Esara, P. (Producer, Director). (2012). Day in, Day Out: Selling food in Bangkok. [Motion Picture]

  • Adjudicated Screenings:
    • Nov. 2012 – Brownfish Short Film Festival (New York, NY)
  • Screenings:
    • Jan. 2013 – NYFQ (formerly Emerging Filmmakers Series), (Rochester, NY)
    • Dec. 2012 – 3rd Athens Ethnographic Film Festival (Athens, Greece)
    • Nov. 2012 – SUNY-wide Film Festival (Fredonia, NY)
    • Sept. 2012 – DocUtah Documentary Film Festival (St. George, UT)
    • June 2012 – 6th Annual Philadelphia Independent Film Festival (Philadelphia, PA)

Last Updated 10/12/17

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