Ph.D. 2008, University of Texas
Areas of Interest
Transnational gender theories & politics, race/ethnicity, social movements, indigenous rights, anthropology of the state & nationalism, Mexico & Latin America, ethnography & collaborative research methodologies
Melissa M. Forbis received her Ph.D. from the University of Texas at Austin in Social Anthropology and an M.A. from Temple University in Visual Anthropology. She is currently working on her book manuscript, tentatively titled Engendering Autonomy: Indigenous Women’s Struggles and the State in Mexico, which examines the Zapatista Army of National Liberation's local autonomy project in Chiapas, Mexico. The multi-sited ethnography--located in communities in Chiapas, but attentive to global discourses and economic processes--focuses on local changes in gender equity and relations of power, and the way that these changes strengthened the movement's challenge to neoliberal multiculturalism in Mexico. She has published several book chapters and articles on gender and indigenous rights in Latin America. Her research interests include transnational feminist theory, race/ethnicity, indigenous rights, anthropology of the state and nationalism, immigration, and Latin America. One of her key interests is in theorizing and developing engaged and collaborative research methodologies. Her teaching includes courses on gender, social movements and Latin America, and an engaged research seminar and practicum.