Australian-Canadian writer, anthropologist, big-wall climber, soldier. (But mainly, I just read too many Wilfred Thesiger and HW Tilman books at an impressionable age).

I studied for a BA in foreign languages (Arabic and French) and security studies before completing a Master of Anthropology – both at the Australian National University. While at ANU, I studied Arabic abroad in Syria as an Ethel Tory Language Scholar.

I am currently a PhD researcher at King’s College London where I am supervised by Drs. Jonathan Hill and Mike Martin.

My research and writing focuses on political, ecological and evolutionary perspectives in anthropology; interactions between state actors and remote-living peoples (desert and mountain societies) in High Asia and North Africa; conflict ethnography; and the microsociology of war crimes.

Other research interests include aboriginal oral traditions and storytelling; the sociopolitical construction of “indigeneity”; small arms trafficking and the anthropology of borders; global and local forms of Islam; and the evolution of jihadism in a hyper-connected world.

I’ve conducted fieldwork in fairly diverse locations – all over the Middle East and North Africa, the Thailand/Burma border, Cape York (Aboriginal Australia) and British Columbia.

See the “Writing” tab for a complete record of my published work. Content on this blog is also permanently catalogued by the National Library of Australia and is available here.

I have a working proficiency with the French and Arabic languages and a basic knowledge of Kuuk Thaayorre. I have provided and can provide a translation service.

I have a Twitter feed which used to feature daily haiku but now tends towards current affairs. My LinkedIn profile can be found here.

Contact at: cgaelliott@gmail.com

14 thoughts on “About

  1. Pingback: Hajj Al-Sahara – The Hand of Fatima | Dispatches from the Periphery

  2. Hi Elliott,

    I just finished reading your blog about the death of your friend Ash in Syria. I take my hat down to you for honouring his memory. Thank you

  3. I read your tribute upon reading the article discussion with his mum via media source. Beautiful & heartfelt but what I relate to is the honesty, respect & integrity in your words for your friend. True honourable words in his memory and whom he was morally and the humanity he felt. A trait that is lost today in many. Thank you for sharing.

  4. Dear Blog Author

    The National Library of Australia is interested in contacting the author of this blog with regard to its possible inclusion within PANDORA: Australia’s Web Archive. We were unable to locate any contact details onsite and are requesting that if you are interested in your blog being archived that you contact us at: webarchive [at] nla.gov.au.

    You can see more details on the Archive at the link below. http://pandora.nla.gov.au/about.html


    PANDORA team

  5. Mr Elliot, I was wondering if you could provide more information on your military background. Your bio on the ABC site mentions you being a former soldier. I’m interested in better understanding your service. Was your service in the Canadian, Australian or another nations armed forces? Which corps/branch were you in? Rank? Did you go overseas on any operations? Thanks for providing this information to better understand your perspective.

  6. Read your piece in the SMH this morning (12/6/18). Could you provide me with a reference for ‘cargo cult’ activity in the PNG highlands, which you refer to.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s