Akeia Benard

Wheelock College Assistant Professor of American Studies Akeia BenardAssistant Professor of Psychology and Human Development
Email: abenard@wheelock.edu
Phone: 617-879-2392
Office: ACE 223 H

Educational Degrees

B.A. 2000, Salve Regina University
M.A. (Anthropology) 2005, University of Connecticut, Storrs
Ph.D. (Anthropology) 2008, University of Connecticut, Storrs

Dr. Akeia Angelique Benard is an assistant professor in the Department of Psychology and Human Development. Benard studies African American and Native American Historical Archaeology and Social Histories in Southeastern New England and also studies Afro-Crucian families and communities and their responses to the political economy of the US Virgin Islands. Interests and projects include Jamaican and Afro-Crucian Rastafarianism symbolism, Cultural Landscapes, free African American communities during slavery, and Native American contact-period household adaptations.

Courses Taught

  • Cultural Anthropology, Cross-Cultural Perspectives on Health and Illness, Globalization and Human Rights, and Sex and Culture


  • Benard, A (2008) The Free African-American Cultural Landscape: Newport, Rhode Island, 1774-1826. University of Connecticut Department of Anthropology.

Selected Publications

  • Benard, A (2007) The Material Roots of Rastafarian Marijuana Symbolism, History and Anthropology, Vol. 18, No. 1.

Selected Presentations

  • Benard, A. (2010) Exploring Eighteenth and Nineteenth Century African American Community Life in Newport, Rhode Island. Spring Lecture Series, Newport Restoration Foundation, March 9, 2010.
  • Benard, A (2009) Liminality and Prestige: Interpreting the Status of Native American Children Using Burial Data. American Society for Ethnohistory Annual Conference, New Orleans, LA October 3, 2009

Current Research

Folk Models of Sustainable Agriculture in St. Croix, United States Virgin Islands; Crucian Rastafarian Symbolism

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