You are here

Cécile Guillaume-Pey

Cécile Guillaume-Pey obtained her Ph.D. in social anthropology from EHESS (Toulouse, France). Her dissertation focused on the ritual practices of the Sora, a tribal group from Odisha-Andhra Pradesh border (Central Eastern India). She was recently based in Ireland as a Foundation Fyssen postdoctoral research fellow at Queen’s University Belfast and University College Cork. As a 2014-2015 ISM Fellow, her project, entitled From Ritual Images to Animated Movies: The Transformative Journey of Sora Paintings, investigates the creation and the transformation of Sora murals in front of which sacrifices are performed. These images are a dwelling for the gods whose presence is thus materialized in the domestic space. Their design is part of a complex ritual performance that requires close collaboration between a painter and religious specialists who, through songs, invite the gods to inhabit the images. Nowadays, these “altar-paintings” are sometimes disconnected from their original ritual use. As cultural emblems displayed on the wall of regional museums or as articles for sale in “tribal markets,’’ or even as animated movies used as political instruments denouncing the abuses perpetrated against tribal peoples, Sora paintings inspire a large range of modern-day media whose goals largely exceed their original aims. This anthropological research focuses on the status and function of these images imbued with different agencies.

Cécile Guillaume-Pey is a member of: