I am a professor on the Postgraduate Program in Social Anthropology (PPGAS) at the National Museum, UFRJ (Federal University of Rio de Janeiro). I am a lead researcher for the National Scientific and Technological Development Council (CNPq). With Fernando Rabossi, I coordinate the Centre for Research on Culture and Economy (NuCEC). I trained in Social Anthropology in Mexico, completed by MA in Buenos Aires and my PhD at the National Museum in Rio de Janeiro. I have carried out field research in Mexico, Argentina, Brazil and Haiti. At the present moment most of my interests are concentrated in three main lines of investigation (in each of which I have cultivated a spirit of collective work, bringing together teams formed by more experienced colleagues and young researchers):
. The Haiti Project. Begun in 2007 with the participation of a team of MA, doctoral and postdoctoral researchers, aims to comprehend the social dynamics of Haiti’s national space within a comparative perspective. Topics covered include currencies and markets, family and political dynamics, mobility and the circulation of people, objects and money.
. Economic Emergencies and the Real Economy. The aim of my research and book project is to analyze the contemporary and multi-scalar relationships between economic emergencies and the real economy, two key concepts deployed to realize and govern the economy in contemporary times. It will problematize the entanglements between moral values, cognitive crises, and the socio-technical-legal devices marshalled during economic emergencies. My proposal is situated at the intersection of the social studies of economy/ics, politics and government. It develops a comparative, ethnographic and historical critique of this contemporary blend of economic and legal devices that, founded on moral judgments and values, aim to urgently mitigate social suffering. I draw from and problematize cases in which economic emergencies are couched in a rhetoric of preserving human life – in the double sense of biological life and of a good life. These situations include food shortages that demand interventions in supply mechanisms; deep economic depressions that require extreme measures to stimulate employment; hyperinflations leading to radical monetary stabilization policies; or debt crises and the collapse of banks and insurance companies, which require instruments to correct ‘systemic risks’ and thus prevent turbulence in the so-called real economy. I shall sketch a social and cultural genealogy of economic emergencies and produce an in-depth assessment of four national universes—Brazil, Venezuela, Argentina, and Haiti—in an effort to decenter or de-Westernize our understanding of the productivity of economic emergencies. Drawing from my long term ethnographic research in Brazil, Argentina, and Haiti and conducting a new research in Venezuela, my book will illuminate the fine articulations between economic devices, legal devices, moral justifications and temporal perspectives. I will develop this project as a fellow of the Institute fo Advanced Study IAS, Princeton) 2019-20.
. Governing uncertainty: territories, houses, markets.The aim of this project is to develop a groundbreaking research into the ways in which people and social collectives deal with uncertainty in various social and cultural settings. The project is an environment for the training of young researchers, inserted in a dense network of international collaboration. Governing the uncertainty designates a set of ways of people and groups deal with present and future uncertain. The project aims to understand the articulations between daily ordinary practice and conceptualization and public policies related to three axes: territories, houses and markets. The project is developed within the framework of an international cooperation agreement CAPES-COFECUB and coordinated with Professor Benoît de l'Estoile (École Normale Supérieure, Paris).
. Debts and moralities.The objective of this project is to contribute to the understanding of the moral universe of debts and indebtedness. It aims to shows entanglements between public policies, macroeconomic processes, practices and pedagogies, indebted (or ‘over-indebted’) flesh and blood people, consumers incensed by the financial institutions and public defenders committed to dealing with banks to protect the rights of the people they assist, teach them their rights and good financial behaviours. The project is part of the Dignity & Debt Global Network, based at Princeton University and coordinated by Professor Frederik Wherry.
My recent publications include:
Conversas Etnográficas Haitianas, Papéis Selvagens, Rio de Janeiro 2019.
The Cultural History of Money in The Age of Empires 1820-1920, organizado junto a Nigel Dodd (London School of Economics) e Bill Maurer (University of California, Irvine), London: Bloomsbury, 2019.
“The Real Economy”, número especial da revista Hau, Journal of Ethnmographic Theory, organizado com Jane Guyer volumes, 7 (3)e 8 (1-2), 2017 e 2018.
“Serendipitous Involvement. Making Peace in the Guèto." No prelo em Didier Fassin (org). If True be Told. The Politics of Public Ethnography. Duke University Press, 2017.
“A true coin of their dreams: Imaginary monies in Haiti (The 2010 Sidney Mintz Lecture)”. Hau. Journal of Ethnographic Theory (6) 1: 75-93 2016.
Some of my publications can be found at:
My complete CV is at: http://buscatextual.cnpq.br/buscatextual/visualizacv.do?id=K4784793Y