Professor Chris Loperena

Christopher Loperena

Associate Professor

Full-Time Faculty

(415) 422-6914 Kalmanovitz Hall 222A


Christopher Loperena is a sociocultural anthropologist (Ph.D. Texas) and Associate Professor in the International Studies Department at the University of San Francisco. His scholarship examines indigenous and black struggles for territorial autonomy in Central America, ethicality and subject formation, racialization, and the socio-spatial politics of economic development. His research has been published in American Quarterly, Current Anthropology, Geoforum, the Journal of Latin American and Caribbean Anthropology, and the Journal of Sustainable Tourism. He was the César Chávez Fellow at Dartmouth College before assuming his position at the University of San Francisco. He has received additional support for his research from the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation and the Inter-American Foundation.

His current book project is titled, A Fragmented Paradise: Blackness and the Limits of Progress in Post-Coup Honduras.

PhD, Social Anthropology, University of Texas at Austin
MA, Latin American Studies, University of Texas at Austin
BA, International Studies, University of Chicago
Black and indigenous social movements
Latin America
Race and gender
Environment, land and development
Ethnographic research methods
Anthropology of ethics and morality
Selected Publications

Forthcoming "Adjudicating Indigeneity: Anthropologist as Expert Witness in the Inter-American Court of Human Rights." American Anthropologist. Accepted April 2018

Forthcoming “Introducción: Dilemas del Peritaje Cultural.” Aida Hernández Castillo, Christopher Loperena and Mariana Mora, eds. Desacatos. Accepted February 2018.

2017 "Settler Violence: Race and Emergent Frontiers of Progress in Honduras." American Quarterly. Special Forum on Settler Colonialism in Latin America. Vol. 69(4).

2017 "Honduras is Open for Business: Extractivist tourism as sustainable development in the wake of disaster?" Journal of Sustainable Tourism. Vol. 25(5):618-633.

2016 "Conservation by Racialized Dispossession: The Making of an Eco-destination on Honduras’s North Coast." Geoforum. Vol. 69:184-193.

2016 "A Divided Community: The Ethics and Politics of Activist Research." Current Anthropology. Vol. 57(3):332-346.

2016 "Radicalize Multiculturalism? Garifuna Activism and the Double-Bind of Participation in Postcoup Honduras." Journal of Latin American and Caribbean Anthropology. Vol. 21(3): 517-538.

Awards & Distinctions

Cesar Chávez Fellow in Latin American, Latino, and Caribbean Studies (2011-12), Dartmouth College