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Dylan Hallingstad O'Brien

Dylan H. O’Brien is a PhD Candidate in Cultural Anthropology at the University of California, San Diego (UCSD). O’Brien’s research examines how practices of conceptualizing and discussing human difference shape the intersections of politics and everyday life in Japan. His research has been supported by fellowships from the Fulbright program, the Kobe College Corporation-Japan Education Exchange, the America-Japan Society, as well as grants from UCSD’s Anthropology, Japanese Studies, and Jewish Studies programs.
For his MA thesis, O’Brien engaged in fieldwork with practitioners of the macrobiotic health lifestyle and philosophy in the Tōhoku region of Japan. His doctoral dissertation is based in multi-sited fieldwork with Jewish organizations in Tokyo, activists, nonprofits, other religious groups, and archival research. O’Brien’s dissertation explores how shifting Japanese representations of Jews have impacted the relationship between Jews and others in Japan.
At UCSD, O’Brien leads the Anthropology Mentor-Protégé Program (AMPP), and has participated in UCSD’s Graduate Application Mentorship Program (GradAMP) and Triton Research Involvement Intiative (TRII). In addition to his research publications and presentations, O’Brien has published articles for the general public about his research in Japan.