Dr. Tiffany Cone

Tiffany Cone

Dr. Tiffany Cone, Assistant Professor of Humanities
Ph.D. in Cultural Anthropology, Australian National University, Canberra, ACT, Australia
B.A. (First Class Hons) in Anthropology, University of Otago, Dunedin, Otago, New Zealand


Tiffany Cone is Assistant Professor of Humanities at AUW and teaches courses that form part of the Core Program. Tiffany has been at AUW since Fall 2015. Previously she taught at the Australian National University in Canberra, Australia. Tiffany has a PhD in Cultural Anthropology from the Australian National University and a BA (Hons) in Cultural Anthropology from the University of Otago in New Zealand.


  • Anthropology of Mental Health: Cross-Cultural Perspectives
  • Blurred Genres: Experimental Approaches to Ethnography
  • National Cinemas in Asia: Cultures and Identities
  • Writing Ethnography: Ethics and Methods
  • An Introduction to the Anthropology of Religion
  • Cultural Anthropology and Contemporary Issues: An Applied Perspective
  • ‌Digital Filmmaking and Media Literacy


My primary research interests lie in the field of psychological anthropology and include cross-cultural conceptions of the self, practices of self-cultivation and meaning-making, processes of rupture and healing and Buddhist, Daoist and Sufi philosophy and practice. I have a forthcoming book publication with Palgrave MacMillan titled Cultivating Charismatic Power: Islamic Leadership Practice in China. The book explores self-cultivation practices amongst a Sufi community in China. I have also produced a number of educational and observational documentary films in China, South Asia and the Pacific. The most recent of these was a film titled Soul Singer which explored the relationship between music and spirituality amongst the Baul community in the South Asian context of Bangladesh. I am currently working on a long term research project exploring knowledge diasporas and migration within Higher Education in Asia, considering identity formation, belonging and imaginings of the future.



Authored Books

Cone, Tiffany. 2018. Cultivating Charismatic Power: Islamic Leadership Practice in China. Palgrave MacMillan (forthcoming).


Book Chapters

Cone, Tiffany. 2017. City of Saints: Linxia as the ‘centre’ of Qadiriyya Sufism in Northwest China. Religion and Locality in the Chinese World. Academia Sinica Institute of Ethnology, Taiwan .

Cone, Tiffany. 2016. Islam: Saints and Sacred Geographies: China, in: Encyclopedia of Women & Islamic Cultures, BrillOnline Reference Works. http://referenceworks.brillonline.com/entries/encyclopedia-of-women-and-islamic-cultures/islam-saints-and-sacred-geographies-china-COM_002042?s.num=0&s.q=tiffany+cone

Cone, Tiffany. 2014. Journeys of knowledge: the role of a Chinese Sufi gongbei in generating mobility between China and Iran. Religion and Mobility in a Globalising Asia: New Ethnographic Explorations. Edited by Sinwen Lau and Nanlai Cao. Routledge Press. https://www.routledge.com/Religion-and-Mobility-in-a-Globalising-Asia-New-Ethnographic-Explorations/Lau-Cao/p/book/9780415716550


Journal Articles

Cone, Tiffany. 2017. Sounding the Soul: Mysticism and Music on Film. The Asia Pacific Journal of Anthropology. Volume 18, Issue 2. http://www.tandfonline.com/doi/full/10.1080/14442213.2016.1261615

Cone, Tiffany. 2015. Experimental Film and Anthropology. The Asia Pacific Journal of Anthropology. Volume 16, Issue 3. http://www.tandfonline.com/doi/full/10.1080/14442213.2015.1016394

Cone, Tiffany. 2014. Communities of Complicity. The China Journal.Volume 72, July. http://www.journals.uchicago.edu/doi/abs/10.1086/677074


Conference Papers

Cone, Tiffany. 2017. Intercultural dialogue and contemporary geo-politics: Islamic exchange between Iran and China. Paper Accepted into the New Zealand Asian Studies Conference, November 27-29.

Cone, Tiffany. 2015. Being both Chinese and Muslim: moral challenges for a Sufi community in Northwest China. Australian Anthropological Society Annual Conference, ‘Moral Horizons’, Melbourne, Australia.

Cone, Tiffany. 2014. Chinese Qadiriyya Sufism and the Glocal: The Making of a Muslim Cosmopolitanism in Northwest China. Australian Anthropological Society Annual Conference, ‘Cosmopolitan Anthropologies’, Queenstown, New Zealand.

Cone, Tiffany. 2013. Charisma on the Margins: The role of a Sufi shrine in Northwest China. Paper presented at Australian Anthropological Society Annual Conference, ‘The Human in the World, the World in the Human’, Canberra. Organized and moderated a panel titled ‘Religion on the Margins’.


Visual Work

2016 – Soul Singer. Ethnographic Documentary. Screened at Dhaka International Short Film Festival.

2014 – Back from the Field: Visualising Ethnographic Practice. Organized, curated and displayed photographic work at ANU School of Art Exhibition.

2007 – Living Chinese Philosophy. Screened at the Hawaii International Film Festival 2007 and Asia Pacific Conference 2007. Distributed in the USA by Insight Media and available through universities worldwide.

2005 – A Vital Force: Women and development in Tibet and Yunnan. Available in University of Otago Library.

2005 – A Guide to Beekeeping in the Tropics. Educational video filmed and distributed in Fiji, funded by NZ Aid.

2003 – Releasing the dragon: small businesses in China’s market economy. Available in University of Otago Library.


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