Dr. Suma Ikeuchi

Transnational migration, globalization of religion, Christianity, citizenship, global Japan
Dr. Suma Ikeuchi

Dr. Ikeuchi’s work examines the intersection of transnational migration and the globalization of religion through a case study of Brazilian Pentecostal migrants in transnational Japan. Her primary areas of interest include race, ethnicity, citizenship, religion, national identity, return migration, Global Christianity, Japanese religions, and ethnographic methods. She currently works as an assistant professor in the Department of Religious Studies at the University of Alabama. She holds a Ph.D. in Anthropology from Emory University in Atlanta, GA, and an M.A. in Anthropology from Brandeis University in Waltham, MA. She conducted 14 months of ethnographic fieldwork on the Pentecostal church networks among Japanese-Brazilian migrants in Japan between 2012 and 2014. She is fluent in Japanese and Brazilian Portuguese.

She also employs visual methods in her work. Her recent ethnographic film was selected for screening at the 2016 Society for Visual Anthropology Film & Media Festival in Minneapolis. Currently, Dr. Ikeuchi is working on a book manuscript tentatively entitled Jesus Loves Japan: Diasporic Return and Global Pentecostalism in a Brazilian Migrant Church. It analyzes why some Brazilians of Japanese descent, who have migrated to their ancestral homeland, convert to Latin American Pentecostalism once they are in Japan. During the SSRC InterAsia Global Summer Semester Fellowship, she will revise her book manuscript, edit another ethnographic film, and prepare for a special issue on return and religion.


University of Alabama – Department of Religious Studies


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