Elise Ann Geist Duwe (nee Meyers)

Section 1



User Photo

Contact Information

Specializations / Research Interest(s)

  • Sociology of Health and Illness; Indigenous Wellness; Sociology of Pain; Qualitative Methodology; Illness Representation; Causal Attributions; Patient-Centered Care

Research Description

  • In my dissertation research, I seek to discern relationship(s), particularly causal relationships, between chronic pain and colonization—a chronic history of US empire that I characterize through ongoing encounters with violence and trauma—in order to inform better care practices and policies for urban American Indian populations. Through a mixed methods study, I investigate chronic pain stories for American Indians, focusing on how American Indian chronic pain sufferers seek care, which modalities of care they use, and how they cope with an incurable illness. Research in this special population with a potent history of trauma enables me to explore a broader research concern regarding integrated critical theories of chronic pain that enable more patient-centered care. 


  • College of Wooster BA in Biochemistry and Religious Studies, 2009
  • University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, MD/PhD in sociology, expected May 2017

Distinctions / Awards

  • INTERSECT Fellow 2013-2015


Journal Articles

  • "Defining older adults’ perceived causes of hypertension in the Brief Illness Perception Questionnaire.." Health Education Journal (2014):
  • "Ecology of health care: the need to address low utilization in American Indians/Alaska Natives.." American Family Physician (2014):