Amy Krauss

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Amy Krauss received her Ph.D. in Anthropology from Johns Hopkins University in 2016. Before joining the Pozen Family Center for Human Rights, she was a Postdoctoral Fellow in the Center for Health and Wellbeing at Princeton University. At the Pozen Center, she teaches courses on human rights and reproductive justice movements, and the politics of representation at stake in ethnographic, literary, and visual depictions of pain and social suffering. 

Her current book project examines feminist practices of care and solidarity across rivaling state jurisdictions of abortion rights and criminalization in Mexico. In 2007, Mexico City inaugurated a public health program to provide the “Legal Interruption of Pregnancy” free-of-cost to women in the capital. In a sweeping backlash, the majority of the other 31 Mexican states made laws to protect “life at the moment of conception.” This new juridical status of life increased the surveillance and prosecution of abortion practices among women without the resources to travel to the city or access private clinics. Drawing on ethnographic research conducted with a Mexico City-based accompaniment network, the book traces how feminist activists and women seeking safe abortion navigate conditions of profound reproductive injustice and inequality. Focusing on the fleeting intimacies and embodied collectivity that emerge through accompaniment encounters and around the public clinic space, it theorizes feminist solidarity as a micro-movement of social connections that create vital counter-points to governmental logics of legality and criminalization. 

Krauss’s broader scholarly interests hinge on situating contemporary abortion debates within philosophical and anthropological questions about the relational context of ethical life, and more specifically, what it means to care for others in spite of moral and epistemological uncertainty. Building a comparative perspective between the U.S. and Mexico, her research traces how constructs of legality, race, class and the body politic cohere in violent regimes of reproductive governance, and the transient forms of political collectivity and moral imagination through which women contest and recast that violence.

Krauss’s research and writing have been supported by the Wenner Gren Foundation for Anthropological Research, the National Science Foundation, and the Woodrow Wilson Fellowship in Women’s Studies. Her work has appeared in Medical Anthropology, Feminist Theory, Luso-Brazilian Review, and Current Anthropology.


Publications: 

(2019) Racial Inequality and the Dissolution of Kinship. Book Review of Contingent Kinship: The Flows and Futures of Adoption in the United States by Kathryn Mariner. Current Anthropology, Vol. 60, No. 5. (link)

(2019) The ephemeral politics of feminist accompaniment networks in Mexico City. Feminist Theory 20, no. 1: p.37-54. (link)

(2018) Book review of Zika: from to the Brazilian Backlands to Global Threat by Debora Diniz. Luso-Brazilian Review Vol. 55, no. 2. (link)

(2018) Luisa’s Ghosts: Haunted Legality and Collective Expressions of Pain, Medical Anthropology, 37:8, 688-702. (link)