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Maria Cruz-Torres

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Associate Professor
Faculty, TEMPE Campus, Mailcode 6303
Senior Sustainability Scientist
Faculty, TEMPE Campus, Mailcode 6303
Assoc Professor
Faculty, TEMPE Campus, Mailcode 6303
Biography

Maria Cruz-Torres is a socio-cultural anthropologist who specializes in environmental, applied and economic anthropology. Her areas of teaching and research are gender and globalization; gender, sustainability and the environment; political ecology; women and work in the informal economic sector; impact of globalization upon local communities and households; and the environmental and social aspects of fisheries and aquaculture development. Professor Cruz-Torres geographic areas of interest are Latin America and the Caribbean. Currently she is conducting research on the topic of gender, globalization, and the environment in Mexico, and is also involved in a National Science Foundation interdisciplinary, transnational collaborative research project focusing on the links between human and biophysical processes in coastal marine ecosystems in Baja California, Mexico. She is an affiliated faculty member with the Center for Biodiversity Outcomes.

Professor Cruz-Torres' teaching reflects many of her research interests and she has developed and taught the following undergraduate and graduate courses: (1) Gender, Culture and Development (2) Gender and Globalization in Latin America; (3) Gender, Sustainability and Social Justice,; and (4) Gender, Globalization and Sustainability. These courses examine current issues facing women in Third World Countries, the manner in which gender shapes and is shaped by globalization processes, and promoting and achieving sustainability and social justice.

 

Education
  • Ph.D. Rutgers University 1991
  • M.A. Rutgers University 1987
  • B.S. University of Puerto Rico 1985
Research Interests

Professor Cruz-Torres is an ecological anthropologist whose research focuses on the role of the state, transnational economy, and natural resource exploitation, and their interrelated impacts on the physical environment and the formation of regional coastal areas and local level communities and households. For more than a decade, she has carried out intensive longitudinal empirical research in coastal Western Mexico treating different aspects of these interests. Dr. Cruz-Torres has developed a long-term intellectual and methodological program that now incorporates aspects of economic and political anthropology with an emphasis in understanding the globalizing links of colonial expansion on Latin America to the most recent transnational expansion of post-modern capitalism on the physical, social, economic, political, and cultural environments of human populations. Within this broad construct, she concentrates great attention to the evolving colonial, national, and post-revolutionary state policies that support these expansions and their ultimate impact on local-level community formations and the households of which they are comprised.

The resulting dynamics create new settlement and community forms, as well as redefinitions and negotiations of gender and class that affect the distribution and access to economic and natural resources. These various interests are expressed in her published articles and in her book "Lives of Dust and Water: An Anthropology of Change and Resistance in Northwestern Mexico" (University of Arizona Press). Her most current research, funded by the Wenner-Gren Foundation for Anthropological Research, examines the relationship between gender, natural resources and grassroots social movements in Northwestern Mexico.

Publications
  • . . Review of: Where the River Ends (2014).
  • Cruz-Torres, María L. and Pamela McElwee. Gender and Sustainability:Lessons from Asia and Latin America. (2012).
  • Cruz-Torres, María L. Contested Livelihoods: Gender, Fisheries, and Resistance in Northwestern Mexico. Gender and Sustainability: Lessons from Asia and Latin America (2012).
  • Cruz-Torres, María L. and Pamela McElwee. Introduction: Gender and Sustainability. Gender and Sustainability: Lessons from Asia and Latin America (2012).
  • Cruz-Torres, María L. Una Visión Antropológica del as Comunidades Costeras del Sur de Sinaloa. (2012).
  • Maria Cruz-Torres, Ramón Angulo. Fisheries and Sustainable Development in Northwestern Mexico. (2007).
  • Maria Cruz-Torres, Ramón Angulo. Gender, Work and Globalization: The Shrimp Traders of Mazatlan, Mexico. Fisheries and Sustainable Development in Northwestern Mexico (2007).
  • Maria Cruz-Torres. Lives of Dust and Water: An Anthropology of Change and Resistance in Northwestern Mexico. (2004).
  • Maria Cruz-Torres. Street of the Shrimp Ladies. Yemaya (International Collective in Support of Fishworkers, Newsletter on Gender and Fisheries) (2004).
  • Cruz-Torres, Maria. Lives of Dust and Water: An Anthropology of Change and Resistance in Northwestern Mexico. (2004).
  • Cruz-Torres, Maria (Author) . The Rural People of Mexico's Northwest Coast. Endangered Peoples of Latin America:Struggles to Survive and Thrive (2002).
  • Maria Cruz-Torres. Local-Level Responses to Environmental Degradation in Northwestern Mexico. Journal of Anthropological Research (2001).
  • Maria Cruz-Torres. Pink Gold Rush: Shrimp Aquaculture, Sustainable Development and the Environment in Northwestern Mexico. Journal of Political Ecology (2001).
  • Maria Cruz-Torres. The Dynamics of Natural Resource Degradation:Rural Households and Women's Strategies for Survival in Northwestern Mexico. Women in International Development Publication Series (2000).
Research Activity
Presentations
  • Maria L. Cruz-Torres. The Local Dimensions of a Global Commodity:Women and Work in the Mexican Shrimp Industry. University of New Mexico, Latin American and Iberian Institute Lecture Series (Nov 2014).
  • Maria L. Cruz-Torres. The Local Dimensions of a Global Commodity:Women and Work in the Mexican Shrimp Industry. University of New Mexico, Latin American and Iberian Institute Lecture Series (Nov 2014).
  • Cruz-Torres María L. The Human ecology of Vulnerability and Exclusion in Northwestern Mexico’s Shrimp Fisheries. Annual meeting of the Society for Applied Anthropology (Mar 2014).
  • Cruz-Torres Maria L. Engaged Anthropology, testimonies, and Women's Resistance in Northwestern Mexico. Institute for Humanities Research-Latin American Research Cluster Series (Jan 2014).
  • Cruz-Torres, María L. Engaged Anthropology, Testimonies, and Women's Resistance in Northwestern Mexico. Latin American Research Cluster, Institute for Humanities Research (Jan 2014).
  • Cruz-Torres, María L. So that they know who we are" Gender, Engaged Anthropology, and Quality of Life in Northwestern Mexico. Annual Meeting of the American Anthropological Association (Nov 2013).
  • Cruz-Torres, María L. Imagining Communities, Technologies, Responsibilities, and Justice in the Anthropocene. Mellon Humanities for the Environment Workshop, Institute for Humanities Research (Nov 2013).
  • Cruz-Torres, María L. Gender, Fisheries, and Sustainability in Northwestern Mexico. Course on Human Dimensions of Environmental Systems (Sep 2013).
  • Cruz-Torres, María L. Fisheries, Food Security and Sustainability in Northwestern Mexico. School of Fisheries, University of Alaska at Fairbanks and Juneau (Sep 2013).
  • Cruz-Torres, María L. Gender, Fisheries, and Sustainability in Northwestern Mexico. Course on Human Dimensions of Environmental Systems (Sep 2013).
  • Cruz-Torres, María L. Gender, Fisheries, and Sustainability in Northwestern Mexico. Course on Human Dimensions of Environmental Systems (Sep 2013).
  • Cruz-Torres, María L. Not Just Any Old Place: The Importance of Ecological Diversity in Native American Resource Use and Management, a Presentation by Dr. Nancy Turner, University of Victoria, B.C. Resilience and Adaptation Program, University of Alaska-Fairbanks (Sep 2013).
  • Cruz-Torres, María L. Globalization, Sustainability, and Food Security. Pueblo Indian Doctoral Cohort (Apr 2013).
  • Cruz-Torres, María L. Hacia una Etnografía Feminista: Un estudio sobre el Género y la Economía Informal en Mazatlán, Sinaloa. Escuela de Ciencias Antropológicas-Universidad Autónoma de Sinaloa (Culiacán) (Dec 2012).
  • Cruz-Torres, maría L. Ethnographies of Place and Space: Culture, politics, and Identity in Urban Mexico. Annual Meeting of the American Anthropological Association (Nov 2012).
  • Cruz-Torres, María L. Gendered Space, Livelihoods and Telenovelas in Mazatlán, Mexico. Annual Meeting of the American Anthropological Association (Nov 2012).
  • Cruz-Torres, María L. Etnografía, Género y la Economía Informal: El Caso de las Camaroneras de Mazatlán, Sinaloa. Centro de Investigaciones Superiores en Antropología Social (CIESAS-Guadalajara) (Oct 2012).
  • Cruz-Torres, María L. Developing Measures of Well-Being for Evaluating projects. Annual Meeting of the Society for Applied Anthropology (Mar 2012).
  • Cruz-Torres, María L. Adaptive Challenges Facing Coastal Communities. Annual Meeting of the Society for Applied Anthropology (Mar 2012).
  • Cruz-Torres, Maria. San Juan- NSF ULTRA. San Juan ULTRA NSF-funded Research Grant (Jun 2011).
  • Cruz-Torres, Maria L. Artisanal Fisheries Research Network. Workshop (May 2011).
  • Cruz-Torres, Maria L. The Global Food Industry of Sinaloa, Mexico. ASU Cronkite Carnegie Lecture (Apr 2011).
  • Cruz-Torres, Maria L. From Shrimp Trader to Politician: The Life and Work of Doña Josefina Ponce. Annual Meeting of the Society for Applied Anthropology (Mar 2011).
  • Cruz-Torres, María L. Gender, Globalization, and Sustainability: A Feminist Anthropology Perspective. Seminario Internacional de Sustentabilidad Social, Migración, Género y Tráfico de Mujeres (Dec 2010).
  • Cruz-Torres, Maria L., McElwee, Pamela and Eder, Jim. Gender and Sustainability: Case Studies from Asia and Latin America. School of Politics and Global Studies (Nov 2010).
  • Cruz-Torres, Maria L. Ethnography and Fishing Communities: Case Studies from Southern Sinaloa. Methodological Approaches for the Study of Fishing Communities (May 2010).
  • Cruz-Torres, María L. To Live Well: Researching Quality of Life among Shrimp Traders in Northwestern Mexico. Annual Meeting of the Society for Applied Anthropology (Mar 2010).
  • Cruz-Torres, María L. The Political Ecology of Mexico under Neoliberalism, Parts 1 and 2. Annual Meeting of the Society for Applied Anthropology (Mar 2010).
  • Cruz-Torres, Maria L. Gender, Work and Globalization. Brophy College Preparatory's Summit on Human Dignity (Feb 2010).
  • Cruz-Torres, Maria L. La Ecología Politica y su Aportación al Entendimiento de los Sistemas Socio-Ecológicos. Instituto de Ciencias del Mar y Limnologia( National University of Mexico), Mazatlan Campus Speaker (Jun 2009).
  • Cruz-Torres, Maria L. La Cultura y el Medio Ambiente en las Comunidades del Sur de Sinaloa. Rotary Club-Mazatlan Speaker Series (May 2009).
  • Cruz-Torres, Maria L. Neoliberalism and the Shrimp Industry: Social Protest and Deterritorialization in Sinaloa, Mexico. The Society for Applied Anthropology- Annual Meeting (Mar 2009).
  • Cruz-Torres, María L. The Political Ecology, Environment and Sustainability of Coastal Communities in Eastern Puerto Rico. Center for Social Science Research-The University of Puerto Rico, San Juan (Feb 2009).
  • Cruz-Torres, María L. The Integration of Social and Natural Science Research Methods in the Study of Environmental Issues. Center for Social Science Research-The University of Puerto Rico, San Juan (Feb 2009).
  • Cruz-Torres, María L. Gender, Fisheries and Sustainability: A Case Study from Mazatlan, Mexico Gender, Fisheries and Sustainability: A Case Study from Mazatlán, Mexico. Annual Meeting of the Society for Applied Anthropology (Nov 2008).
  • Cruz-Torres, María L. Unruly Women and Invisible Workers: Shrimp Traders in Northwestern Mexico. Canadian Historical Association (Jun 2008).
  • Cruz-Torres, María L. Gender, Education and Social Development. Autonomous University of Sinaloa-School of Social Sciences (Jun 2008).
  • Cruz-Torres, María L. Workshop on Gender Studies. Autonomous University of Sinaloa-School of Social Sciences (Jun 2008).
  • Cruz-Torres, María L. Fisheries, Sustainability and the Environment in Sinaloa. Global Day for the Environment (Jun 2008).
  • Cruz-Torres, María L. The Rhythm of Daily Life: Music and Poetry in Rural Mexico. Annual Meeting of the Society for Applied Anthropology (Mar 2007).
  • Cruz-Torres, Maria. What's in a Context?:Comparative Lessons from Mexican Marine Protected Areas. Annual Meeting of the American Anthropological Association (Nov 2006).
  • Cruz-Torres, Maria, McCay, Bonnie. Explaining Sustainability: A View from Lower California. Annual Meeting of the American Anthropological Association (Nov 2006).
  • Cruz-Torres, Maria. Gender, Social Networks and Fieldwork in Mexico and in the U.S./Mexican Border. Annual Meeting of the Society for Applied Anthropology (Mar 2006).
  • Cruz-Torres, Maria. Trading Favores y Confianza: Gender, Work, and Social Networks among Mexican Shrimp Traders. Annual Meeting of the Society for Applied Anthropology (Mar 2006).
  • Cruz-Torres, Maria. La Antropología de las Comunidades Costeras en el Noroeste de México. Paper presented at the First Symposium on the Social Aspects of Fishing Communities, School of Marine Sciences, Universidad Autónoma de Sinaloa at Mazatlán (Dec 2004).
  • Cruz-Torres, Maria. Gender, Fisheries and Globalization: Women Shrimp Traders in Northwestern Mexico. International Conference 'Women in Fisheries and Aquaculture: Lessons from the Past, Current Actions and Ambitions for the Future'. Santiago de Compostela, Spain (Nov 2004).
  • Cruz-Torres, Maria. Illegality , Authenticity and Resistance: The struggle for Shrimp in Southern Sinaloa, Mexico. International Association for the Study of Common Property (IASCP), Tenth Biennial Conference, Oaxaca, Mexico (Aug 2004).
  • Cruz-Torres, Maria. Global Economies, Local Livelihoods: Gender, Labor and Migration in Rural Northwestern Mexico. Paper presented at the Annual Meeting of the Society for Applied Anthropology. Portland, Oregon (Mar 2003).
  • Cruz-Torres, Maria, Cruz-Torres, Maria. Environmental Degradation, Coastal Ecosystems and Human Communities in Northwestern Mexico. 15th Annual Meeting of the Society for Conservation Biology, University of Hawaii at Hilo (Jul 2001).
  • Cruz-Torres, Maria. 'Pink Gold' Rush: Shrimp Aquaculture, Economic Development and the State in Sinaloa, Mexico. Social Relations of Mexican Commodities Conference, Center for U.S.-Mexican Studies, University of California, San Diego (Apr 2000).
  • Cruz-Torres, Maria. Human Migration and Coastal Ecosystems in Mexico. Ecology in an Era of Globaliztion (The Ecological Society of America)
Professional Associations

American Anthropological Association

Political Ecology Society

Society for Applied Anthropology

Service
  • Graduate Selection Committee, School of Sustianbility, member (2012 - Present)
  • Graduate Selection Committee, member (2012 - Present)
  • Tenure Committee, member (2011 - Present)
  • ASU Chicana(0)/Latina(o) Faculty Association, Representative for the Women Faculty Association (2011 - Present)
  • Conservation and Society Journal, Board Member (2007 - Present)
  • Society for Applied Anthropology, Fellow (2007 - Present)
  • Phoenix Country day School (Project Excellence), panelist (2006 - Present)
  • Society for Applied Anthropology, Member, Board of Directors (2014 - 2016)
  • Barrett's the Honors College, Honors Faculty Advisor (2014 - 2016)
  • ASU, School of Sustainability, Center for Biodiversity Outcomes, Affiliated Faculty (2014 - 2016)
  • Advisory Board, Institute for Humanities Research, Member (2014 - 2016)
  • Barrett's the Honors College, Honors Faculty Advisor (2014 - 2016)
  • Institute for Humanities Research-ASU, Advisory Board Member (2014 - 2016)
  • Society for Applied Anthropology, Member, Board of Directors (2014 - 2016)
  • Conservation and Society (Journal), Associate Editor (2013 - 2015)
  • Conservation and Society, Associate Editor (2013 - 2015)
  • History and Anthropology Journal, Reviewer (2014 - 2014)
  • Latino Studies, Reviewer (2013 - 2014)
  • Maritime Studies Journal, Reviewer (2014 - 2014)
  • Study Abroad Program in Puerto Rico, organizer/coordinator (2013 - 2014)
  • Conservation and Society, Subject Editor (2014)
  • PAC Committee, member (2014)
  • Language, Culture, and Learning Search Committee, member (2013 - 2014)
  • Probatory Faculty Review Committee, Chair (2013 - 2013)
  • Conservation and Society, Advisory Board (2007 - 2013)
  • Radio Campesina Network, Discussant (2013 - 2013)
  • Conservation and Society, editorial board member; subject editor (2007 - 2013)
  • Political ecology Society, Chair, Eric Wolf Prize Committee (2012 - 2013)
  • Hidrobiologica, Reviewer (2012 - 2012)
  • Search Committee/Health Position, Chair (2012 - 2012)
  • The Journal of Latin American and Caribbean Anthropology, Reviewer (2012 - 2012)
  • Gendered Perespectives on International Development Working Paper Series (Michigan State University), Editorial Board (2009 - 2012)
  • Gendered Perspectives on International Development Working Paper Series (Michigan State University), Editoria Board Member (2009 - 2012)
  • Gendered Perspectives on International Development Working Paper Series (Michigan State University), Editorial Board Member (2009 - 2012)
  • temas Antropológicos: Revista Científica de Investigaciones Regionales, Reviewer (2012 - 2012)
  • Eric Wolf Prize Committtee-Political Ecology Society, Chair (2011 - 2012)
  • Conservation and Society, Subject Editor (2011 - 2011)
  • Language Requirement Committee for the Ph.D. Program, Chair (2011 - 2011)
  • Conservation and Society Journal, Board Member (2007 - 2011)
  • Health Position Search Committee, Chair (2010 - 2011)
  • Eric Wolf Prize Award of the Political Ecology Society, Chair (2010 - 2011)
  • Graduate Selection Committee, School of Sustainability, member (2011 - 2011)
  • Program Review, member (2010 - 2010)
  • External Review Committee, member (2009 - 2010)
  • Applied Economist Search Committee, Chair (2009 - 2010)
  • Political Ecology Society, President (2007 - 2010)
  • School of Human Evolution and Social Change (Environmental Social Science Ph.D.), Graduate Selection Committee (2010 - 2010)
  • School of Sustainability, Graduate Selection Committee (2010 - 2010)
  • The Political Ecology Society, President (2007 - 2010)
  • Academic Personel, member (2008 - 2009)
  • Personel Committee, member (2008 - 2009)
  • Political Ecology Society, President (2007 - 2009)
  • Graduate Committee, Member (2008 - 2008)
  • Academic Senate, Senator (2007 - 2008)
  • CLAS Senate, Seantor (2007 - 2008)
  • Political Ecology Society, Vice-President, Treasurer (2006 - 2008)
  • Journal of Political Ecology, Reviewer (2005 - 2008)
  • Academic Senate, Senator (2006 - 2007)
  • CLAS Academic Senate, Senator (2006 - 2007)
  • Graduate Committee, Member (2006 - 2007)
  • Academic Senate, representative from my unit (2005 - 2006)
  • Personnel Committe, member (2005 - 2006)
  • Political Ecology Society, Board Member (2005 - 2006)