Krista Van Vleet

Associate Professor of Anthropology and Chair of Sociology and Anthropology Department

Krista Van Vleet’s research investigates intimacy and inequality in everyday life, particularly in relation to gender, kinship, and youth in the highland Andes. Specializing in cultural and linguistic approaches to understanding the affective and embodied dimensions of interpersonal interactions, her scholarship is based in long-term ethnographic fieldwork in Bolivia (1995-present) and Peru (2009-present). She is the author of Performing Kinship: Narrative, Gender, and the Intimacies of Power in the Andes and of numerous articles that focus on the experiences of indigenous Andeans and rural-to-urban migrants in Bolivia. She is co-author of Making Families through Adoption. Currently, Professor Van Vleet is engaged in two ethnographic projects. The first explores the ways that caring for and caring by adolescent mothers produces moral hierarchies that are intertwined with neoliberal insecurities and broader discourses of gender, family, and citizenship in contemporary Peru. The second examines religion, personhood, and social transformation among native Andeans in Bolivia through six intertwined life histories.

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Krista Van Vleet


  • Biochemistry, Beloit, 1987
  • MA Anthropology, Michigan, 1994
  • PhD Anthropology, Michigan, 1999