Ana Mariella Bacigalupo, 2009–10; 2023–24 | National Humanities Center

Ana Mariella Bacigalupo (NHC Fellow, 2009–10; 2023–24)

Project Title, 2023–24

The Subversive Politics of Sentient Mountains: Collective Ethics and Climate Justice in Northern Peru

Burroughs Wellcome Fund Fellowship in the Humanities, Arts, and Sciences Fellowship, 2023–24

Professor of Anthropology, University at Buffalo

Project Title, 2009–10

Shamanic Memory and Historical Consciousness: The Making of Francisca Colipe and Her Mapuche Community in Chile

University at Buffalo

Ana Mariella Bacigalupo is professor of anthropology at the University at Buffalo. She received her PhD at the University of California, Los Angeles and conducted postdoctoral work at Harvard University. Through her work on the consciousness and transformational politics of more-than-humans (sentient landscapes, spirits, co-gendered shamans, the undead), Bacigalupo rethinks previously theorized assumptions about the nature and organization of the word, politics, and forms of power to decolonize the production of knowledge and create new methodologies. She shows how shamans and more-than-human places challenge traditional ideas of personhood, gender, time, history, and memory, as well as drive collective ethics and social and environmental justice.

Bacigalupo’s research has been funded by the John Simon Guggenheim Memorial Foundation, the Max Planck Institute, the Radcliffe Institute for Advanced Study, the National Endowment for the Humanities, the National Humanities Center, the School for Advanced Research, the Rockefeller Foundation, the Stanford Humanities Center, the Netherlands Institute for Advanced Study, the Fulbright Foundation, the Wenner-Gren Foundation, the American Association of University Women, Fundación Andes, Fundación Conycit, PontificiaUniversidad Católica de Chile, and the Divinity School and the Center for World Religions at Harvard University, among others.

Bacigalupo has published five books: Thunder Shaman: Making History with Mapuche Spirits in Patagonia (2016); Shamans of the Foye Tree: Gender, Power and Healing Among Chilean Mapuche (2007); The Voice of the Drum in Modernity: Discourses of Tradition and Change in the Practice of Seven Mapuche Shamans (2001); and Hybridity in Mapuche Healing: The Practice of Contemporary Shamans (1996). She also coauthored Modernization and Wisdom in Mapuche Land (1995). Her work has been published in the journals American Ethnologist, Journal of Anthropological Research, Anthropology and Humanism, Journal of Latin American and Caribbean Anthropology, and American Religion, among others. She is currently writing a book titled, The Subversive Politics of Sentient Lands: Collective Ethics and Climate Justice in Northern Peru and is coediting a special issue of the journal American Religion titled, “Subversive Religiosities and More-than-Human Materialities in Latin America.”

Selected Publications

Thunder Shaman

  • Bacigalupo, Ana Mariella. “Pan-ethnic Moral Cosmopolitics: Subversive Mountains and Climate Justice in Northern Coastal Peru.” American Religion (2023). Forthcoming.
  • Bacigalupo, Ana Mariella. “The Mapuche Undead Never Forget: Traumatic Memory and Cosmopolitics in Post-Pinochet Chile.” Anthropology and Humanism 43, no. 2 (2018): 1–21.
  • Bacigalupo, Ana Mariella. Thunder Shaman: Making History with Mapuche Spirits in Chile and Patagonia. Austin: University of Texas Press, 2016.
  • Bacigalupo, Ana Mariella. “The Paradox of Disremembering the Dead: Ritual, Memory, and Embodied Historicity in Mapuche Shamanic Personhood.” Anthropology and Humanism 41, no. 2 (2016): 139–57.
  • Bacigalupo, Ana Mariella. “The Potency of Indigenous Bibles and Biography: Mapuche Shamanic Literacy and Historical Consciousness.” American Ethnologist 41, no. 4 (2014): 648–63.
  • Bacigalupo, Ana Mariella. Shamans of the Foye Tree: Gender, Power, and Healing among the Chilean Mapuche. Austin: University of Texas Press, 2007.

Fellowship Work Report, 2009–10

Ana Mariella Bacigalupo made substantial progress on her book Shamanic Memory and Historical Consciousness: The Making of Francisca Colipe and Her Mapuche Community in Chile, under contract with University of Texas Press. She also contributed chapters for two edited volumes: “Mapuche Shamans in Chile: Ritual Gendered Relationships and Forms of Personhood” in Indigenous Women and Religion (ABC-CLIO/Praeger Press) and “Las Mujeres Machi en el Siglo XX-XI: ¿Personificación de la Tradición o Desafío a las Normas de Género?” in Historia de la Mujer en Chile Siglos XX-XI (Editorial Taurus). In addition, she wrote “Mobile Spirits and the Merging and Mythologizing of Individual Histories: Machi Rosa, the Mapuche–German Patagonian Shaman Who Saved the World” for the Journal of the Royal Anthropological Institute; “The Life, Death, and Rebirth of a Mapuche Shaman: Remembering, Forgetting and the Willful Transformation of Memory” for the Journal of Anthropological Research (2010); “El Hombre Mapuche que se convirtió en Mujer Chamán: Individualidad, Transgresión de Género y Normas Culturales en Pugna” for Chungara, Revista de Antropología Chilena; and “Relaciones de Género Ritual: Parentesco, Matrimonio, Dominio y Modalidades de Persona de los Chamanes Mapuche” for Scipta Ethnologica.

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