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Richard Kurin

Richard Kurin, museum official.


  • Kurin, Richard was born on November 27, 1950 in Bronx, New York, United States.

  • Education

    • Bachelor, State University of New York, 1972. Master of Arts in Anthropology, University Chicago, 1974. Certified in Urdu language, University California, Berkeley, 1974.

      Doctor of Philosophy in Anthropology, University Chicago, 1981.


    • Visiting assistant professor department anthropology Southern Illinois University, Carbondale, 1981-1984, assistant professor, 1984-1985. Program coordinator, curator, consultant Festival of India, Aditi & Mela Exhibitions, Smithsonian Institution, Washington, 1984-1985. Professorial lecturer Johns Hopkins University, Paul Nitze School Advisory International Studies, 1985-1995.

      Deputy director Center for Folklife and Cultural Heritage Smithsonian Institution, Washington, 1985—1987, acting director, 1987-1990, director, since 1990, chair 150th Anniversary Program Committee, since 1993, acting director National Programs, since 2004, chair on demand committee, since 2006, director national programs, since 2006, acting under secretary, since 2007. Collector American Museum Natural History, Punjabi Indian village artifacts, 1970. Visiting instructor community development program Southern Illinois University, Carbondale, 1979-1981.

      Program coordinator Indian Puppetry Program, Smithsonian Institution, 1980. Consultant anthropologist Harza Engineering Company, United Nations Development Programme and World Bank, Indus Basin Master Planning Project, 1977. Ethnic tours manager division performing arts On-Tour India Program, Pakistan Program, Smithsonian Institution, 1976.

      Advisory board Council Overseas Research Centers, 1989. Adjunct professor George Washington University, 1999. International jury United Nations Educational Masterpieces Intangible Cultural Heritage, 2000-2004.


    • Reflections of a Culture Broker: A View From the Smithsonian
    • Is culture brokered like stocks, real estate, or marriage? In this engaging book, Richard Kurin shows that cultures are also mediated and indeed brokered by countries, organizations, communities, and individuals -- all with their own vision of the truth and varying abilities to impose it on others.


    Trustee Smithsonian Secretary's Republican, Library. of Congress, American Folklore Center, since 1989, American Pakistan Research Organization, 1989-1992, United States National Commission for United Nations Educational, since 2004. Member Fairfax County Citizen Association Education Committee, since 1991. President Bailey's Elementary School Parent Teacher Association, 1989-1991.

    Fellow Society Applied Anthropology. Member American Folklore Society (Benjamin Botkin lifetime achievement award 1999), American Ethnological Society, Association Asian Studies, American Anthropol. Association.


    • Married Allyn Bland; children: Danielle, Jaclyn.
    Richard Kurin
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    Born November 27, 1950
    (age 66)
    • 1972
      State University of New York
    • 1974
      University Chicago
    • 1974
      University California
    • 1981
      University Chicago
    • 1981 - 1984
      Visiting assistant, professor department anthropology Southern Illinois University
      Carbondale, Illinois, United States
    • 1984 - 1985
      program coordinator
      Washington, United States
    • 1985 - 1987
      deputy director, Center for Folklife and Cultural Heritage Smithsonian Institution
      Washington, United States
    • 1985 - 1995
      professor, ational Studies
    • 1985 - 1995
      Paul Nitze School Advisory Intern, ational Studies
    • 1993
      deputy director, Center for Folklife and Cultural Heritage Smithsonian Institution
    • 2006
      deputy director, Center for Folklife and Cultural Heritage Smithsonian Institution
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