Loud in Bali

James E. Loudon

(PhD, University of Colorado, 2009)
Office: 211 Flanagan Building
Telephone: 252-737-1263
E-mail: loudonj@ecu.edu

About Me

I am holistically trained anthropologist who focuses on the behavioral ecology of nonhuman primates. I have several research foci including stable isotope ecology, nutritional ecology, primate parasitology, and ethnoprimatology.  My ethnoprimatological work focuses on the interconnections between humans and long-tailed macaques (Macaca fascicularis) in Ubud, Bali, Indonesia.  The population of macaques I study inhabit a sacred monkey forest that surrounds a Hindu temple complex that is approximately ~700 years old.  As a result, the local people have been in close contact with the macaques at this site for several centuries.  Today the Ubud Monkey Forest Sanctuary is a popular tourist destination allowing for unique studies that examine how the macaques at the site interact with tourists and the local Balinese people they live among.  This work also examines how macaques adapt to the pressures of living in large, complex nonhuman primate societies while inhabiting urban areas.  There are a number of research questions to pursue at the site and I am the co-director of the Balinese Ethnoprimatology Field Project.  Each year I take undergraduate and graduate students to the field site and teach them how to collect primatological and ethnographic data. This field school is coordinated through ECU’s Study Abroad Office.  For those interested in the field school click here for the Study Abroad Office:



For further information about the Ubud Sacred Monkey Forest Sanctuary, the macaques at the site, and the program click the following links:




When I am not teaching or chasing nonhuman primates, I live a fast paced life in an anthropology household. My wife, Michaela Howells is an Assistant Professor in the Anthropology Department at the University of North Carolina-Wilmington. Her research examines how psychological and social stress affects the health of pregnant mothers and their infants in American Samoa. Michaela and I are the proud parents of a brilliant mini Australian Shepard Mix named Uli (to be clear, Uli is not an anthropologist) who is more affectionately known as “Pants France.” Uli likes to swim in the Atlantic Ocean, chase squirrels, and eat meat.



Department News

There are a few GA positions available next year looking at enviro anth and climate change issues. If you are interested as an incoming grad student, See for more information.

 Dr. Ewen will be the featured speaker at the HCAS reception. See flyer for details

Gain valuable experience while earning school credit! There are numerous anthropology internship opportunities available to undergraduate and graduate students. Students can attain school credit through two undergraduate internship courses, ANTH 4990 and 4991. To see all the possibilities and learn more, click here.
Kristalyn Gill was named winner of the 2015 ECU Study Abroad Photo Contest. Check out the photo of Kristalyn on Mt. Huascaran in Peru!

 Dr, Bailey's article, "A New Online Strategy in Teaching Racial and Ethnic Health and Health Disparities to Public Health Professionals" was accepted by the Journal of Racial and Ethnic Health Disparities. It will appear in the 2016 issue of the Journal.

Excavations in the Western Negev Highlands: Results of the Negev Emergency Survey 1978-89  by Dr. Benjamin Saidel and co-author M. Haimon was published December 2014 by British Archaeological Reports. See here for more.


Haley Drabek translated the Tyrrell Water Management Study finalized in 2014 into 9 separate brochures, one for each proposed water management district. She spent six weeks visiting property owners in each district to explain the benefits of participating in the localized water management district and asking for signatures of intent to join.

Anna Claire researched existing oral history booklets at the Tyrrell Visitor Center and then interviewed elderly Tyrrell County residents who grew up in the county. She taped these interviews for safe keeping at the Visitor Center and is currently writing narrative reports of the collected information, one for each conversation partner. These reports will be bound and held at the Tyrrell County Visitor Center for interested readers. Anna Claire has also been involved with a group of children in the county with a diverse ethnic background. Under Anna Claire's direction the children are currently writing a newsletter that will report on the children's experiences of growing up in Tyrrell County, exploring their favorite places, activities, and hopes for their future.  
East Carolina ranks number one for the second consecutive year as the provider of graduate degrees for the Register of Professional Archaeologists registrants! Read more here

 Dr. Holly Mathews and Dr. Laura Mazow were recognized for their outstanding teaching methods by students during the Spring 2015 semester from the College STAR.

Student response for Dr. Mathews:

"She gives feedback and forces her students to expand their mind and explore alternate theories or explanations. She wants her students to discuss topics in class instead of just listening to her talk the entire time."

Student response for Dr. Mazow:

"We have a small class which allows many opportunities for a lot of class discussion...She always provides feedback and answers to our journal entries and is always available when we need help." 

Congratulations to them both!