Lex Kuiper (1987) graduated cum laude in Medical Anthropology and Sociology at the Graduate School of Social Sciences, University of Amsterdam. In this programme he researched conceptions of love and romantic relationships and made clear by looking at 'what people do with love' that emotions should receive greater attention by anthropologists as social phenomena. Lex's broad array of research interests include, amongst others: medicalisation and globalisation processes, health and disease, gender, conflict, sexuality, language and music.
He joined the AISSR as a Ph.D. candidate in 2012 where he does research with heroin users that are enrolled in methadone maintenance programmes in West Java, Indonesia. He is interested in how hope and hopelessness arise in lived temporalities shaped by the clinic and the substances used. His dissertation focuses amongst others on how drug addiction is perceived in Indonesia both as a disaster to the Indonesian nation that needs to be eliminated and as a disease that needs to be treated, on the preceived risk of diversion of substances and surveillance measures, and on the notion of addiction as a chronic relapsing disease that has become widely accepted after writings in neuroscience. The key finding concerns how the clinic, addiction discourses, and the substances used shaped a temporal structure of perpetual repetition and boredom. Maintenance entailed a forever-present of healing without hope of a future recovery.
Living in the Forever-Present: The Stickiness of Methadone
Presented at the 114th American Anthropological Association Annual Meeting (Denver, November 18-22, 2015)