a good refugee
a good refugee
Oct 31, 2020
Trump, Tibet, the decline of America & Nov 3 - Carole McGranahan (55 mins)

Gelek speaks with professor Carole McGranahan about what’s at stake on Nov 3, Trump’s incredible capacity for mendacity (05:00), why Tibetan Americans should think twice about supporting Trump (28:00), China vs the U.S. (40:00), and what’s a good refugee to do going forward (43:00).

Bio: Professor Carole McGranahan is an anthropologist and historian of Tibet and the Himalayas, and a professor at the University of Colorado. She conducts research, writes, lectures, and teaches. At any given time, professor McGranahan is probably working on one of the following projects: political asylum and refugee citizenship in the Tibetan diaspora (Canada, France, India, Nepal, Switzerland, and the USA); Tibet, the British empire, and the Pangdatsang family; the self-immolations in Tibet; the CIA and the Chushi Gangdrug resistance army; and, anthropology as theoretical storytelling. She lives in the mountains outside of Boulder, Colorado.


Episode notes:

  • State of America heading into Nov 3 election [03:00]

  • Do Trump’s lies really break from past American presidencies? [05:00]

  • Is Trump the logical endpoint of America as a settler colonial project? [14:00]

  • Is a Biden administration really a true, progressive force that people think it will be? [19:00]

  • Local state elections and voter suppression [23:00]

  • Tibetans, Trump and Tibetan conservatism [28:00]

  • American presidents who stood up for Tibet against China [37:00]

  • What’s so bad about China’s rise to the top? [40:00]

  • Tibetan refugees and good refugees [43:00]

  • Final thoughts and go vote (for Biden)! [53:00]

Projects in the works:

Book on Pangdatsang family.

Research project on political asylum and questions of citizenship in the Tibetan diaspora.

“The Tibet Reader” book in collaboration with Dechen Pemba (High Peaks Pure Earth), Lama Jabb (Oxford University), Nicole Willock (Old Dominion University) and Dhondup Tashi Rekjong (Northwestern University).


A Presidential Archive of Lies: Racism, Twitter, and a History of the Present,” International Journal of Communication 13, 2019, pp. 3164-3182.

“An Anthropology of Lying: Trump and the Political Sociality of Moral Outrage,American Ethnologist 44(2), 2017, pp. 243-248.

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