Sinah Theres Kloß

I'm a social anthropologist, working at the Morphomata Center for Advanced Studies at the University of Cologne. My main research areas are the anthropology of religion; material culture studies; tattoo, clothing and dress; migration; and Southern theory. My regional focus is on the Caribbean, especially Guyana and Suriname, but I also specialize in the transcultural flows between India and the Caribbean.


Workshop with Teju Cole @ Poetica IV - Festival für Weltliteratur

"Blind Spot"

January 26, 2018, 10 am

Interview @ Deutsche Welle

"Fußballer und ihre Tattoos"

December 18, 2017

Conference Report @ WDR 5: Leonardo - Wissenschaft und mehr

"Tattoos als Forschungsgegenstand"

December 4, 2017

Interview @ Kölner Stadt-Anzeiger

November 28, 2017

Invited Talk @ University of Bern, Switzerland

"(Re-)Writing the Caribbean: Transculturality and Transnationalism in the Caribbean and Its Diasporas"

November 3, 2017; 3 pm

Magazine Article @ Voices from around the world

"An Oral History of Saris in Guyana. (Dis-)Patches from Berbice", vol. 2, 2017.

Journal Article @ Social Sciences and Missions

"Contesting 'Gifts from Jesus': Conversion, Charity, and the Distribution of Used Clothing in Guyana", Social Sciences and Missions (30), pp. 346-365.

Latest Book

New Edition

The latest edition of the web magazine Voices from around the world is out now:

Garments in Exchange: Changing Clothes Around the World

vol. 2, 2017


Conference @ University of Cologne

Tattoo: The Histories and Aesthetics of Embodied Imaging and Writing

December 1 - 2, 2017


Tattoos and tattooed bodies seem to be omnipresent among a variety of social groups and actors today. Although in public discourse the popularity of tattoos is commonly discussed as ‘growing’ or as a ‘novel’ phenomenon, tattoo practices indeed have long and diverse histories around the globe. As tattoo narratives and analyses are often narrowly focused on stigmatization and marginalization processes, this international conference seeks to go beyond this discourse. It addresses, for example, visual and material aspects of the (un)making of tattoo or the relevance of tattoo(ing) in the construction of socio-cultural bodies, lives and histories, both among individuals and groups, in the past and at present. Questions will be raised such as: How do tattoo images and practices facilitate representations of self and other? How do they performatively (re)create biographies and histories? What do tattoo aesthetics and practices reveal about the often separately used categorizations of life-writing and life-imaging?


The interdisciplinary conference, which brings scholars of history, social anthropology, sociology, archaeology, literary studies, cultural studies and art history into dialogue, is going to take place on December 1 and 2, 2017 at the Morphomata Center for Advanced Studies, University of Cologne.