Fall 2018 Mellon Visiting Professor

photo of Renzo Taddei

Renzo Taddei is assistant professor of anthropology at the Federal University of São Paulo, Brazil and a specialist in the social study of science and technology. An environmental anthropologist who has carried out field research in Argentina and Brazil, Dr. Taddei conducts research on the communication between climate scientists, meteorological institutions, and indigenous and other local populations in Latin America. He is interested in many dimensions of the subject: currently, these include both what non-Western collectives do, think, and feel when they say that they are manipulating the atmosphere (through rituals, for instance), and what climate engineers do, think, and feel when they say they are creating large geoengineering schemes to save us from climate change.

Dr. Taddei has spent many years trying to understand what meteorologists and the so-called “rain prophets” of rural Brazil do, think, and feel when they predict the future states of the atmosphere. Dr. Taddei obtained a PhD in anthropology from Columbia University, and is affiliated with Columbia’s Center for Research on Environmental Decisions as well as the Comitas Institute in New York. He has published widely in leading academic journals such as Latin American Research ReviewEthics, Policy and EnvironmentClimate and DevelopmentSocial Semiotics; and Agriculture and Human Values.  

During his time at Duke, he taught two courses, Water and Society: Concepts and Controversies in Latin America(LATAMER 390), and Whose Anthropocene?: Global South Perspectives on Environmental Crisis (LATAMER 590S).