Ellen B. Rubinstein, PhD

Assistant Professor of Anthropology

Office: 428C4 Minard Hall
Telephone: 701.231.8657
Email: ellen.rubinstein@ndsu.edu

Selected Publications

2021. Rubinstein EB, B Dahlberg, EZ Faro, P Taber, and GM Fix. Emergent Anthropology: Reimagining U.S. Medical Anthropology in Theory and Practice. Somatosphere. http://somatosphere.net/2021/emergent-anthropology-medical-anthropology-us.html/ (January 20).

2020. Rubinstein EB and RV Sakakibara. Diagnosing Hikikomori: Social Withdrawal in Contemporary Japan. Medicine Anthropology Theory 7(2):58-81. https://doi.org/10.17157/mat.7.2.684

2019. Fetters MD and EB Rubinstein. The 3Cs of Content, Context and Concepts: A Practical Approach to Recording Unstructured Field Observations. TheAnnals of Family Medicine 17(6):554-560. https://doi.org/10.1370/afm.2453

  • Ph.D., Sociocultural Anthropology, Yale University
  • M.A., East Asian Studies, Yale University
  • B.A., English/East Asian Languages and Cultures, Columbia University

Dr. Rubinstein is a cultural and medical anthropologist with ethnographic research experience in Japan and the U.S. She is classically trained in anthropological theory and methods, which she uses in her applied medical anthropology work on cancer survivorship, vaccine hesitancy, and rural community pharmacy. She currently collaborates with colleagues across NDSU – including the Center for Immunization Research and Education (CIRE), the Department of Public Health, and the College of Pharmacy – on various healthcare-related projects. Working on interdisciplinary teams and with healthcare practitioners has enabled her to experiment with different research philosophies and methodologies, as well as to demonstrate the crucial role anthropology can play in solving real-world problems. Her projects often provide paid research opportunities for graduate and undergraduate students, who gain hands-on experience in team research and in collecting and analyzing qualitative data.

Dr. Rubinstein’s research interests span a broad array of medical and related topics, including: (bio)medicine, rural health, pharmacy, caregiving, mental health, psychiatry, diagnosis, disability, aging, and family. She aims to prepare anthropology students to explain their skills to a wide audience, both to ensure anthropology contributes to broader social discussions and to enhance students’ ability to effect positive change in the world.

Research and Teaching Specializations
  • Medical Anthropology
  • Psychological Anthropology
  • Anthropological Theory
  • Ethnographic Research Methods
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