Catherine’s research interests centre on: social change, social mobility and social differentiation in late twentieth and twenty-first century Vietnam and Australia.
Her doctoral project titled Longing and belonging: an ethnographic study of migration, cultural capital and social change among Ho Chi Minh City’s re-emerging middle classes (2008) was based on fifteen months of ethnographic fieldwork conducted in Vietnam in 2000-2001, 2004 and 2005. Recent research based on fieldwork in Ho Chi Minh City since 2008 focuses on university students, education mobility and social change in post-conflict society.
Recent commissioned oral histories include a history of a Gippsland-based regional community health service and a Melbourne-based ethnic women’s community organization.
Current research projects
- Student Voices in Transition, a teaching-led research project (with Stuart Levy) investigating challenges faced by non-traditional and ‘first-in-family’ students commencing university study in Australia and South Africa
- Urban youth culture in contemporary Vietnam, an ongoing anthropological project centering on youth culture, social space and class mobility in Ho Chi Minh City
- Levy, Stuart and Earl, Catherine, Faculty of Arts Teaching Led Research Projects 2009: Student Voices in Transition (Diploma of Tertiary Studies Book Project) – $8,723.36
- Earl, Catherine, Latrobe Community Health Service: Commissioned Oral History of Latrobe Community Health Service – $20,000 + $2,500
- social change in 20th and 21st century Vietnam
- post-conflict society
- gender, sexuality and culture
- oral history
- social theory
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- School of Applied Media & Social Sciences, Gippsland Campus