Christine Folch


Areas of Interest: Environmental Humanities, Latin America, Sustainability, Water, Political Economy

2015-   Assistant Professor of Anthropology and Environmental Science and Policy, Duke University, NC.

2012-15   Assistant Professor of Anthropology, Wheaton College, IL.

Ph.D.   The Graduate Center, City University of New York, Anthropology.

B.A.     Harvard College, History. Graduated cum laude.

2019    Hydropolitics: The Itaipú Dam, Sovereignty, and the Engineering of Modern South America (Princeton University Press).

In Preparation
The Book of Mate: A Stimulating Cultural History

Refereed Articles
2016    The Nature of Sovereignty in the Anthropocene: Hydroelectric Lessons of Struggle, Otherness, and Economics from Paraguay. Current Anthropology 57:5, 565-585.

2015   The Cause of All Paraguayans? Defining and Defending Hydroelectric Sovereignty. Journal of Latin American and Caribbean Anthropology 20:2, 242-263.

2013    Surveillance and State Violence in Stroessner’s Paraguay: Itaipú Hydroelectric Dam, Archive of Terror. American Anthropologist 115:1, 44-57.

2010    Stimulating Consumption: Yerba Mate Myths, Markets, and Meanings from Conquest to Present. Comparative Studies in Society and History 52:1, 6-36.

2008    Fine Dining: Race in Pre-Revolution Cuban Cookbooks. Latin American Research Review 43:2, 205-223.

Book Chapters in Peer-Reviewed Edited Volumes
2018    Ciudad del Este and the Common Market: A Tale of Two Economic Integrations. In Big Water: New Histories of the Triple Frontier, 1550-2000, edited by Jacob Blanc, Frederico Freitas. University of Arizona Press. Pp 267-284.

Other Publications
2019    The ITAIPU energy uproar continues on both sides of the Paraná. Global Americans. August 19.

2019    Behind Paraguay’s secret deal and the resulting political crisis over ITAIPU. Interview with Pedro Ferreira. Global Americans. August 19.

2014    Sustainability: Lessons from Latin America. Wheaton Magazine. Autumn.

2014    Arab Eyes and Arab Voices: A Review. Books and Culture. March/April: 22-23.

2013    Why the West Loves Sci-Fi and Fantasy: A Cultural Explanation. The Atlantic.

2012    A Tale of Two Quintessential Argentine Beverages: wine and yerba mate. Slate.

2012    Trouble on the Triple Frontier. Foreign Affairs.

2010   An Intimate Chat with The Figurine’s Kunle Afolayan and Ramsey Noah. MTV Iggy.

2010    Review of “The Figurine.” MTV Iggy.

2001    Cinderella Redux: Seeking True Beauty with Latin America’s Most Popular Soap Opera. Regeneration Quarterly (April).

2012    Presidential Management Fellowship Finalist

2010    Mellon/ACLS Dissertation Completion Fellowship

2008    IIE Fulbright Dissertation Research Grant

2008    Wenner-Gren Foundation Dissertation Fieldwork Grant

2007    Foreign Language and Area Studies Fellowship (intensive Guaraní), Summer

2004-08 CUNY Chancellor’s Fellowship

Invited Lectures
2015     “Power is Politics”: Engineering Energy Sovereignties in the Anthropocene. Center for Latin American and Caribbean Studies (CLACS), Duke University. January 30.

2014     “ZanaAfrica: Making a Difference as a Business School Case Study.” Chicago Africa Business Group Guest Lecture, University of Chicago Booth School of Business. March 5.

Conference Papers
2013     “All That Is Water: Engineering Energy Sovereignties and Electricity Nationalities” presented at the 112th Annual Meeting of the American Anthropological Association, Chicago. Nov. 20-24.

2013     “Contested Accounts and Conspiracy Theories: Protesting Energy Debt, Narrating the Paraguayan Nation” at the American Ethnological Society/Association for Political and Legal Anthropology Joint Spring Meeting, Chicago, April 11-13.

2012     “Speaking of Paraguay: The Legacy of the Robertson brothers’ Letters from Paraguay” at Rethinking Inheritance Conference, The New School for Social Research. April 28.

2011     “Managing Expectations: Spectacles of Corruption, Rituals of Patronage” at the 110th Annual Meeting of the American Anthropological Association, Montreal, Nov. 15-20.

2011    “Journeys of Empire: the Robertson brothers’ Letters on Paraguay” at the Annual Meeting of the Association of American Geographers, Seattle, April 12-16.

2010    “Paraguayan Nation-State Making: The Power Plays of Recovering Hydroelectric Sovereignty” at “The State: Fixity and Circulation” panel (co-organizer) at 109th Annual Meeting of the American Anthropological Association, New Orleans, Nov. 17-21.

2010    “The Stakes of a City: Ciudad del Este as Competing Territorial Strategies” at XXIX International Congress of the Latin American Studies Association, Toronto, Oct.r 6-9.

2009    “El Estado Paraguayo Opaco: la Corrupción y la Transparencia” at VIII Reunión de Antropología del Mercosur, Buenos Aires, Sept. 28-Oct. 2.

2009    “Tentaciones Hidroeléctricas y los Juegos del Poder: Interpretando el Estado Paraguayo en el Marco de Itaipú, como Frontera Binacional” at VIII Reunión de Antropología del Mercosur, Buenos Aires, Sept. 28-Oct. 2.

Other Presentations
2014    Panelist, Africa Business Forum at the Emerging Markets Summit, University of Chicago Booth School of Business. April 12.

2014    Panelist, Wheaton College Science Symposium “Nuclear Energy: Realizing the Promise.” March 26.

2013    “Sympathy for the Engineer,” presentation at the Wheaton College Science Lunch Seminar, Oct. 8.

2011    “Stakes of a Triple Frontier City: the Untold History of Ciudad del Este, Paraguay.” The New York Public Library’s Research Study Rooms’ public lectures on History. New York. Jan. 21.

2009    Radio interview with Democráticamente Online. Ciudad del Este, Paraguay. July 28.

2009    “Itaipú: The Power to Redefine Paraguay.” Presentation to Emory Executive MBA International Trip Module. Asunción, Paraguay. April 18.

American Anthropological Association, Member

American Friends of ZanaAfrica, Chairwoman (2007-2015)

Association of American Geographers, Member

Latin American Studies Association, Member

New York Public Library, Wertheim Study, Writer in Residence 2010

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