CIPR | Center For Inter-American Policy & Research

Tulane University

Arachu Castro

Senior Associate Research Fellow - Samuel Z. Stone Chair of Public Health in Latin America

Contact Info
acastro1@tulane.edu

Department Affiliation
School of Public Health and Tropical Medicine

Arachu Castro, Ph.D., M.P.H., is Samuel Z. Stone Chair of Public Health in Latin America at Tulane University and Senior Research Affiliate at CIPR. Her major interests are how social inequalities are embodied as differential risk for pathologies common among the poor and how health policies may alter the course of epidemic disease and other pathologies afflicting populations living in poverty. As a medical anthropologist trained in public health, Dr. Castro works mostly on health systems responses to infectious disease and women’s health in Latin America and the Caribbean. She has worked in Mexico, Argentina, Haiti, Cuba, Puerto Rico, Venezuela, Colombia, Peru, the Dominican Republic, Brazil, Nicaragua, and Honduras. Prior to joining Tulane in 2013, she was Associate Professor of Global Health and Social Medicine in the Department of Global Health and Social Medicine at Harvard Medical School, Senior Advisor for Mexico and Guatemala at Partners In Health, and Medical Anthropologist in the Division of Global Health Equity in the Department of Medicine at Brigham and Women‘€™s Hospital in Boston. Among other awards, Dr. Castro is the recipient of the 2005 Rudolf Virchow Award of the Society for Medical Anthropology and the 2010 Guggenheim Fellowship for her work on Women and AIDS in Latin America and the Caribbean. In 2012, she was named Fellow of the Society for Applied Anthropology. She has worked as consultant for PAHO, WHO, UNICEF, UNAIDS, UNDP, and the World Bank. More information here

Degrees
  • M.A., University of Barcelona, History/Social Anthropology, 1988
  • R.D., Polytechnic Institute, Barcelona, Nutrition, 1989
  • M.A., École des Hautes Études en Sciences Sociales (EHESS), Social Anthropology & Ethnology, Paris, 1992
  • Ph.D., EHESS, Social Anthropology & Ethnology, 1996
  • Ph.D., University of Barcelona with credits from University of California, Berkeley, Sociology, 1997
  • MPH, Harvard School of Public Health, International Health, 1998
Academic Experience
  • Samuel Z. Stone Chair of Public Health in Latin America, Tulane University, 2013-
  • Associate Professor of Global Health and Social Medicine Harvard Medical School, Department of Global Health and Social Medicine, 2011-2012
  • Assistant Professor of Social Medicine Harvard Medical School, Department of Global Health and Social Medicine, 2004-11
  • Instructor in Medical Anthropology, Harvard Medical School, Department of Global Health and Social Medicine, 2001-04

Research & Teaching Specializations: Infectious disease, women‘€™s health, primary health care in low-and middle-income settings, maternal and child Health, infectious disease, social inequality, health policy, health equity, medical anthropology, Latin America and the Caribbean

Related Experience
  • Consultant, World Bank, 2012-
    Consultant, UNDP Regional Center for Latin America and The Caribbean
  • Consultant, UNICEF, 2007- (intermittent)
  • Consultant, Pan American Health Organization, 2001-2011 (intermittent)
  • Medical Anthropologist, Division of Global Health Equity, Dept. Medicine, Brigham and Women‘€™s Hospital, Boston, 2004-2012
  • Secretary-Treasurer, Society for Medical Anthropology, American Anthropological Association, 2003-06
  • Mexico and Guatemala Projects Director, Partners In Health, Boston, 2001-08
  • Chair, Critical Anthropology of Health Caucus, Society for Medical Anthropology, 1998-2002
Distinctions
  • Fellow, Society for Applied Anthropology, 2012
  • Guggenheim Fellowship, Medicine and Health, United States and Canada Competition, 2010
  • Burke Global Health Fellowship, Harvard Initiative for Global Health, 2009
  • Bacardi Family Eminent Scholar Chair in Latin American Studies, University of Florida, Gainesville, 2009
  • Rudolf Virchow Award, Professional Prize, Critical Anthropology of Health Caucus, Society for Medical Anthropology, American Anthropological Association, 2005
  • Dean’s Letter, Excellence in Teaching (Freshman seminar), Faculty of Arts and Sciences, Harvard University, 2005
  • Conmemorative Medal for the Centenary of Professor Pedro Kourí. Institute of Tropical Medicine Pedro Kourí. Havana, Cuba, 2001
Languages:
  • Spanish
  • French
  • Catalan
  • Portuguese
  • Haitian Creole
Overseas Experience
  • Dominican Republic
  • Cuba
  • Haiti
  • Mexico
  • Nicaragua
  • Colombia
  • Venezuela
  • Peru
  • Argentina
Selected Publications
  • 2019. “Childhood asthma from a health equity perspective: The case of Latin America and the Caribbean.” Annals of allergy, asthma & immunology : official publication of the American College of Allergy, Asthma, & Immunology. 122(5):445-446.e2.
  • 2019. “Obstetric Violence as Reproductive Governance in the Dominican Republic,” with Savage, V. Medical anthropology. 38(2):123-136.
  • 2018. “How social inequalities are embodied as differential risk for pathologies among the poor: Trends in HIV incidence among youth and adolescent pregnancy in Latin America and the Caribbean.” American journal of physical anthropology. 165(S66):44.
  • 2017. “Measuring mistreatment of women during childbirth: a review of terminology and methodological approaches,” with Savage, V. Reproductive health. 14(1):138.
  • 2015. “Assessing equitable care for Indigenous and Afrodescendant women in Latin America,” with Kaufman, H. and Savage, V. Revista panamericana de salud publica = Pan American journal of public health. 38(2):96-109.
  • 2013. “Health insurance for the poor decreases access to HIV testing in antenatal care: Evidence of an unintended effect of health insurance reform in Colombia.” With Allison Ettenger and Till Bärnighausen. Health Policy and Planning 1-7; doi: 10.1093/heapol/czt021
  • 2012. “Quality of Life of People with HIV/AIDS Receiving Antiretroviral Therapy in Cuba: A Cross-Sectional Study of the National Population.” With Carlos Aragonés-López, Jorge Pérez-Ávila, and Mary C. Smith Fawzi. American Journal of Public Health 102(5):884-892.
  • 2011. Análisis Regional Consolidado de los Informes UNGASS Presentados por 17 Países de América Latina en 2011. Panama: UNAIDS Regional Support Team for Latin America.
  • 2011. “En estado de buena esperanza: Análisis de la experiencia reproductiva en mujeres con VIH en Cuba.” In Jesús Armando Haro (ed.) El planteamiento de una epidemiología sociocultural: Un diálogo en torno a su sentido, métodos y alcances. Buenos Aires: Lugar Editorial and El Colegio de Sonora.
  • 2010. “Social Inequalities and Dengue Transmission in Latin America.” With Yasmin Khawja and James Johnston. In Plagues and Epidemics: Infected Spaces Past and Present. Eds. Ann Herring and Alan Swedlund. New York, Oxford: Berg Publishers, pp. 231-249.
  • 2009. (Ed.) Challenges Posed by the HIV Epidemic in Latin America and the Caribbean 2009. Washington, DC: Pan American Health Organization, UNICEF, and UNAIDS.
  • 2009. “Prevention of Mother-to-Child Transmission of HIV and Syphilis in Latin America and the Caribbean,” in Challenges Posed by the HIV Epidemic in Latin America and the Caribbean 2009. Washington, DC: Pan American Health Organization, UNICEF, and UNAIDS.
  • 2004. (Ed.) Unhealthy Health Policy: A Critical Anthropological Examination. With Merrill Singer. Walnut Creek, CA: Altamira Press.

Recently-Taught Latin American-Related Courses: LAST-6200: Health & Inequality in Latin America, GCHB-6860: Public Health in Cuba

Number of Dissertations or Theses Supervised in the Past 5 Years: 5

Full CV or Website
Departmental Biography
NCBI Website

Class:
School:
RE/Special:
Region:
Countries:

LATEST SITE UPDATES

NEWS

EVENTS

PEOPLE

RESOURCES

All Events

Upcoming Events

Latin American Writers Series: Andrea Palet (Editorial Laurel)--POSTPONED

View Full Event Description

Due to the current unrest in Chile, this event has been postponed until further notice. More details coming soon.

Editorial Director Andrea Palet presents the history, philosophy, and ongoing projects of Editorial Laurel, a publishing house founded in Santiago, Chile in 2014. Her presentation sheds light on the changing landscape of literature in the Americas today. It will be followed by a reception. This event will be held in Spanish.

About the Latin American Writers Series

This series brings together Latin America’s most representative creative voices and the editorial entrepreneurs that publish them. By way of interviews conducted by renowned Ecuadorian writer Gabriela Alemán and presentations of various editorial missions, the guests will shed light on a literary world shaped by the contemporary issues of the continent. Moving forward, their conversations will comprise the centerpiece of a digital archive that introduces their ideas to a global audience.

Este serie reúne a los autores más representativos de la escritura continental y los editores que los publican. A través de entrevistas con la reconocida escritora ecuatoriana Gabriela Alemán y presentaciones de proyectos editoriales, los invitados explorarán los vínculos entre el mundo literario y la realidad continental. Sus conversaciones se convertirán después en el eje de un archivo digital que busca llevar estas ideas a un público global.

About the Speaker

Andrea Palet is the founding editorial director of Editorial Laurel, established in 2014 in Santiago, Chile. Under her leadership, the house has released the works of more than 20 novelists, essayists, and chroniclers. Paleta also oversees the Master of Editing program at the Universidad de Diego Portales. A collection of her columns, Leo y olvido, was released in 2018 by Ediciones Bastante.

Latin American Writers Series: Power Paola

View Full Event Description

Ecuadorian author and Tulane Visiting scholar Gabriela Alemán interviews Colombian writer and visual artist Power Paola about her life, interests, and influences. Their discussion will be followed by an open Q&A and an informal reception. This event will be held in Spanish.

About the Latin American Writers Series

This series brings together Latin America’s most representative creative voices and the editorial entrepreneurs that publish them. By way of interviews conducted by renowned Ecuadorian writer Gabriela Alemán and presentations of various editorial missions, the guests will shed light on a literary world shaped by the contemporary issues of the continent. Moving forward, their conversations will comprise the centerpiece of a digital archive that introduces their ideas to a global audience.

Este serie reúne a los autores más representativos de la escritura continental y los editores que los publican. A través de entrevistas con la reconocida escritora ecuatoriana Gabriela Alemán y presentaciones de proyectos editoriales, los invitados explorarán los vínculos entre el mundo literario y la realidad continental. Sus conversaciones se convertirán después en el eje de un archivo digital que busca llevar estas ideas a un público global.

About the Author

Powerpaola was born Paola Andrea Gaviria Silguero in Cali, Colombia. Writer, visual artist, and filmmaker, she has published the graphic novels Virus Tropical (2011), Por Dentro_ (2012), _Diario_ (2013), _qp_ (2014), _Todo va a estar bien (2015), and Nos vamos (2016). She also collaborated on the film adaptation of Virus Tropical, which won the 2019 Quirino award for Best Ibero-American Animation Feature Film. Her artwork has been exhibited in museums and galleries in Europe, Austrialia, and the Americas.

Latin American Writers Series: Martín Fernández (Casa Editorial HUM/Estuario Editora)

View Full Event Description

Martín Fernández, editorial director of Casa Editorial HUM and Estuario Editora in Montevideo, Uruguay, presents the houses’ histories, missions, and ongoing projects. His presentation sheds light on the changing landscape of literature in the Americas today. It will be followed by an informal reception. Note: This event will be held in Spanish.

About the Latin American Writers Series

This series brings together Latin America’s most representative creative voices and the editorial entrepreneurs that publish them. By way of interviews conducted by renowned Ecuadorian writer Gabriela Alemán and presentations of various editorial missions, the guests will shed light on a literary world shaped by the contemporary issues of the continent. Moving forward, their conversations will comprise the centerpiece of a digital archive that introduces their ideas to a global audience.

Este serie reúne a los autores más representativos de la escritura continental y los editores que los publican. A través de entrevistas con la reconocida escritora ecuatoriana Gabriela Alemán y presentaciones de proyectos editoriales, los invitados explorarán los vínculos entre el mundo literario y la realidad continental. Sus conversaciones se convertirán después en el eje de un archivo digital que busca llevar estas ideas a un público global.

About the Speaker

Martin Fernández is the Editorial director of the publishing houses Casa Editorial HUM and Estuario Editora in Montevideo, Uruguay. He founded HUM in 2007 after leaving his previous project, the underground publishing house ArteFato, which he co-directed between 2004 and 2007. HUM and Estuario publish contemporary Uruguayan literature in high-quality, aesthetically distinct editions. They have collectively released more than 400 titles.

CIPR Fall Speaker Series

View Full Event Description

Please join us Mondays at noon for our Fall speaker Series
Markets, the State, and Democracy in Latin America
October 14, October 21, November 11, and November 18.

In the 2019 fall series, Markets, the State, and Democracy in Latin America, speakers will discuss emerging issues that have surfaced as the result of the opportunities and challenges to democratic governance that markets have brought to the region. Latin America experienced a major influx of investment, particularly in the resource sector, over the past several decades. While this foreign investment helped hasten economic development, it also brought a backlash of resource nationalism and increased calls for redistribution. Moreover, Latin America is now a model in its own right, with other countries in the Global South adopting its state-sponsored development strategies in the resource sector. These presentations will also explore how Latin America is navigating a sea change in geopolitics, with China emerging as a challenger to the United States as the region’s main trade partner and ally.

For more information, check out our Fall Series Poster

Latin American Writers Series: Alberto Barrera Tyszka

View Full Event Description

Ecuadorian writer and Tulane Visiting Scholar Gabriela Alemán interviews Venezuelan writer Alberto Barrera Tyszka about his life, interests, and influences. Their discussion will be followed by an open Q&A and an informal reception. This event will be held in Spanish.

About the Latin American Writers Series

This series brings together Latin America’s most representative creative voices and the editorial entrepreneurs that publish them. By way of interviews conducted by renowned Ecuadorian writer Gabriela Alemán and presentations of various editorial missions, the guests will shed light on a literary world shaped by the contemporary issues of the continent. Moving forward, their conversations will comprise the centerpiece of a digital archive that introduces their ideas to a global audience.

Este serie reúne a los autores más representativos de la escritura continental y los editores que los publican. A través de entrevistas con la reconocida escritora ecuatoriana Gabriela Alemán y presentaciones de proyectos editoriales, los invitados explorarán los vínculos entre el mundo literario y la realidad continental. Sus conversaciones se convertirán después en el eje de un archivo digital que busca llevar estas ideas a un público global.

About the Author

Born in Caracas, Alberto Barrera Tyszka has published over a dozen works of poetry, short story, chronicle, novel, and biography. His most recent publications include the novels Patria o Muerte (2015) and Rating (2011), the poetic anthology La inquietud (2013), the collection of chronicles Un país a la semana (2013), and the short story collection Crímenes (2009). In 2005, he collaborated with Cristina Marcano to write the definitive biography of Hugo Chávez, Hugo Chávez sin uniforme: una historia personal (2005). Patria o muerte won the 2015 Premio Tusquets de Novela, and his novel La enfermedad, translated into English as The Sickness (2010), received the 2006 Herralde Award. Barrera also writes for television and has scripted soap operas for Venezuelan, Mexican, Colombian, and Argentinian networks.