PhD candidate, Educational Policy Studies, Anthropology
Faculty advisor: Nancy Kendall, Associate Professor, Educational Policy Studies; Claire Wendland, Professor, Anthropology
Rachel Silver’s research explores the relationship between discourse on girls’ education and sexuality in international development and the lived experiences of young women. Her dissertation is an ethnographic examination of the diverse meanings attached to schoolgirl pregnancy in Malawi, and the consequences of these on girls’ post-pregnancy opportunities.
Silver first investigates how student pregnancy has come to be understood as a social problem for actors in a range of social locations from the village level to the UN. She then explores how the reform of a Malawian policy related to student sexuality shapes the possibilities for girls’ wellbeing.
Silver holds an M.A. in African Studies (Yale University) and in Anthropology (UW–Madison), and has conducted research in Kenya, Ethiopia, Malawi, and the U.S.