Research Interests

My research interests, like those of many Latin American anthropologists doing anthropology “at home”, have oscillated between the classical topics of social and cultural anthropology –kinship and morality, power and authority, knowledge and personhood, to mention just a few- and the more contemporary and applied issues of economic and political anthropology -land tenure and use, regional markets, civil rights, and political struggles. My research on Amerindian philosophies of power, modes of knowledge and notions of personhood and sociality, on the one hand, and on colonization, regional economies and the building of local civil societies, on the other hand, reflects this duality; a duality that derives as much from personal preferences as from an attempt to conciliate the demands of academic anthropology with the very urgent needs of the Amazonian indigenous peoples, who are amongst the most marginal and ignored social groups in Latin America. Common to these two research fields is a permanent interest on historical processes and transformations, which has led me to investigate native Amazonian forms of slavery and servitude but also to focus on the configuration and development of Amazonian regional economies.

Current Research