• Race and Ethnicity Studies Symposium, Dr. Cristina Alcalde
    Kelly Lessard

Dr. M. Cristina Alcalde
Marie Rich Endowed Professor of Gender and Women’s Studies and Associate Dean of Inclusion and Internationalization, College of Arts and Sciences, University of Kentucky, Lexington

Talk detailed description: In Peruvian Lives across Borders, M. Cristina Alcalde examines the evolution of belonging and the making of home among middle- and upper-class Peruvians in Peru, the United States, Canada, and Germany. Alcalde draws on interviews, surveys, participant observation, and textual analysis to argue that to belong is to exclude. To that end, transnational Peruvians engage in both subtle and direct policing along the borders of belonging. These acts allow them to claim and maintain the social status they enjoyed in their homeland even as they profess their openness and tolerance. Alcalde details these processes and their origins in Peru’s gender, racial, and class hierarchies. As she shows, the idea of return–whether desired or rejected, imagined or physical–spurs constructions of Peruvianness, belonging, and home. Deeply researched and theoretically daring, Peruvian Lives across Borders answers fascinating questions about an understudied group of migrants.

Speaker bio: M. Cristina Alcalde is Professor of Gender and Women’s Studies and Marie Rich Endowed Professor.  She serves as Associate Dean of Inclusion and Internationalization in the College of Arts and Sciences. She is also Director of the new Online Graduate Certificate in Diversity and Inclusion. Between 2011 and 2015, she served as Faculty Co-Director of A&S Wired Residential College. She served as Director of Graduate Studies in Gender and Women’s Studies until Spring 2017. She is an affiliate faculty member in Social Theory, Latin American, Caribbean, and Latino Studies, and Anthropology. Her research areas include gender violence, migration, exclusion, and race and racialization. 

Her most recent book is Peruvian Lives across Borders: Power, Exclusion, and Home (2018, University of Illinois Press). It is based on multi-sited research in Peru, the U.S., Canada, and Germany. Her other publications include The Woman in the Violence: Gender, Poverty, and Resistance in Peru (2010), La mujer en la violencia (Spanish edition, published in 2014 by the Instituto de Estudios Peruanos and the Fondo Editorial de la Universidad Católica del Perú), and a co-edited book (with J. Zavala), Visiones del Perú de académicos peruanos en Estados Unidos (Visions of Peru of Peruvian Academics in the United States (2008). She is also co-editor, with Susan Bordo and Ellen Rosenman, of Provocations: A Transnational Reader in the History of Feminist Thought (2015, University of California Press).

She has also published articles in the journals Meridians: Feminism, Race, Transnationalism; the Journal of Latin American and Caribbean Anthropology; Latin American Perspectives; Journal of Consumer Culture; Latino Studies; Sexualities; JARM: Journal of the Association for Research on Mothering; Men and Masculinities; the Journal of Popular Culture; Journal of Gender Studies; Chicana/Latina Studies; Feminist Formations; Global Networks; and Sexualities. Her work has also appeared in book chapters in collections including Local Violence, Global Media: Feminist Analyses of Gendered Representations, Anthropology at the Front Lines of Gender-Based Violence, and Teacher, Scholar, Mother: Re-Envisioning Motherhood in the Academy.

During April-July 2013, she was an invited visiting professor in the Gender Studies Program at the Pontificia Universidad Católica in Lima, Perú, where she taught a seminar on feminicide and intersectionality. During June 2018, she was an invited visiting professor in the Gender Studies Program at the Ludwig Maximilians University in Munich, Germany, where she taught a seminar on gender and migration. Her current research project examines contemporary Chinese-Peruvian experiences of identity, belonging, and exclusion both in Peru and transnationally.

Dr. Alcalde also provides expert witness testimony for domestic violence asylum cases, and is a member of the Kentucky Advisory Committee of the U.S. Commission on Civil Rights.

About this lecture series: Race and Ethnicity Studies Symposium is held annually during the Martin Luther King Jr Week of Celebration