Biography and research interests
Dr Jokic received his PhD in anthropology at the University of Sydney in 2004. Based on substantial fieldwork among the Yanomami in the Upper Orinoco River region of Venezuela, his doctoral research is ethnography that focuses essentially on experiential and phenomenological aspects of Yanomami shamanism, cosmology and cultural changes, especially shamans’ attitudes and responses towards introduced diseases (and the corresponding new forms of treatment), which have resulted in a terminal imbalance in the Yanomami lifeworld. In 2005, he conducted a short comparative ethnographic field research among the Buryat people in Eastern Siberia focusing on the revival of indigenous identity in the post-soviet Russia. In 2008, he joined the Venezuelan Programme for Elimination of Onchocerciasis – Southern Focus Amazonas, coordinated by the ecoepidemiology unit of the Amazonian Centre for Investigation and Control of Tropical Diseases ‘Simon Bolivar’ (SACAICET). For the next five years, he worked as part of the multidisciplinary team involved in research and control of onchocerciasis (commonly known as river blindness), which is endemic in many parts of the Yanomami territory. During this time, he also worked as a consultant for the Onchocerciasis Elimination Programme for the Americas (OEPA). OEPA is the main regional body with its headquarters in Guatemala that provides support for this programme in Venezuela and five other endemic countries of the Americas in a partnership with the Pan-American Health Organization (PAHO), The Carter Centre, academic institutions and independent organisations.
Dr Jokic has recently completed a forthcoming manuscript based on his long-term research, The Living Ancestors: Shamanism, Cosmology and Culture Change among the Yanomami of the Upper Orinoco, which he submitted to Berghahn Books. He is currently working as Research Assistant Intern in the Native Title Research Unit of the Australian Institute for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Studies (AIATSIS).