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Amy Cooper, Ph.D.

Assistant Professor

Courses Taught

Medical Anthropology; Public Health; The Body; Citizenship; Latin American and Caribbean Studies; Urban Ethnography


Ph.D., The University of Chicago, Department of Comparative Human Development, 2012

Practice Areas

  • Pleasure and politics in Venezuelan health care
  • ADHD and stimulant use
  • Homelessness and mental health
  • Psychiatry and the stigma of mental illness
More Information on Research

Publications and Media Placements

Under contract, University of California Press
In Excess of Medicine: Pleasure and Citizenship in Venezuelan Health Care.

2012.  Vital Politics: Medicine and Citizenship in Venezuela. Doctoral dissertation, University of Chicago. Click here for a review.

In Press
“At such a good school, everybody needs it.” Contested meanings of prescription stimulant use in college academics. EthosClick here for PDF.

Moving medicine inside the neighborhood: Health care and sociospatial transformation in Caracas, Venezuela. Medicine Anthropology Theory special issue 4(1):20-45. Click here for PDF.

The Doctor’s Political Body: Doctor-Patient Interactions and Political Belonging in Venezuelan Neighborhood Clinics. American Ethnologist 42(3):459-474. Click here for PDF.

What does health activism mean in Venezuela’s Barrio Adentro program? Understanding community health work in political and cultural context. Annals of Anthropological Practice special issue 39(1):58-72. Click here for PDF.

Protests and Polarization in Venezuela After Chávez: Introduction; Life After Hugo Chávez (editorial; co-authors Robert Samet and Naomi Schiller). Field Sites – Hot Spots.

Time Seizures and the Self: Institutional Temporalities and Self Preservation among Homeless Women. Culture, Medicine, and Psychiatry 39:162-185. Click here for PDF.

Psychiatrists’ Attitudes Toward Involuntary Hospitalization (co-authors Dan Luchins, Patricia Hanrahan, and Ken Rasinski). Psychiatric Services 55:1058-1060. Click here to download PDF

Mental Illness and Dangerousness: Fact or Misperception, and Implications for Stigma (co-author Patrick Corrigan). In On the Stigma of Mental Illness: Practical Strategies for Research and Social Change. Corrigan, P.W., Ed. pp. 165-179. Washington, DC: American Psychological Association. Book

Mental Illness Stigma and Care Seeking (first author; co-authors Patrick Corrigan and Amy Watson). Journal of Nervous and Mental Disease 191:339-341. Click here to download PDF

Edited Collections
Protests and Polarization in Venezuela After Chávez (co-editors: Robert Samet and Naomi Schiller). Field Sites – Hot Spots. Cultural Anthropology online.

Book Chapters
Becoming a community person: Stories of motivation and transformation in Barrio Adentro’s volunteer health committees [Spanish]. In De la Participación en Salud a la Construcción de Poder Popular: Experiencias para el Debate. Eds. Miguel Malo and Johanna Levy. Maracay, Venezuela: Instituto de Altos Estudios Dr. Arnoldo Gabaldón, 99-111. Click here to download PDF

God’s Laboratory: Assisted Reproduction in the Andes. By Elizabeth Roberts (Berkeley: University of California Press).

Revolutionary Medicine: Health and the Body in Post-Socialist Cuba by P. Sean Brotherton (Durham: Duke University Press).

Love, Sorrow, and Rage: Destitute Women in a Manhattan Residence. By Alisse Waterston (Philadephia: Temple University Press). Medical Anthropology Quarterly 20:261-262.

Honors and Awards

Awards and Fellowships

  • 2010: Irmgard Coninx Foundation Essay Competition, Berlin Roundtables on Transnationality
  • 2009: National Association for the Practice of Anthropology Student Paper Prize (1st runner up)
  • 2008: Fulbright-Hays Doctoral Dissertation Research Abroad (DDRA) Program, U.S. Dept. of Education
  • 2007: Fulbright-IIE U.S. Student Program, U.S. Department of State (declined)
  • 2007: Society for Applied Anthropology Spicer Award
  • 2004: National Science Foundation Graduate Research Fellowship (Honorable Mention)
  • 1994: Houston Endowment Jones Scholar Program

University Awards and Fellowships

  • 2017: Mellon Faculty Development Award, Saint Louis University
  • 2016: Innovative Teaching Fellowship, Reinert Center for Transformative Teaching and Learning, Saint Louis University
  • 2014: Faculty Summer Research Grant, Muhlenberg College
  • 2014: Multicultural Center Course Development Grant, Mapping Intersections of Power, Muhlenberg College
  • 2013: Faculty Summer Research Grant, Muhlenberg College
  • 2013: Multicultural Center Course Development Grant, Intersections and Alliances, Muhlenberg College
  • 2011: Bernice Neugarten Lectureship Prize, University of Chicago
  • 2010: Gianinno Dissertation Writing Fellowship, University of Chicago
  • 2010: Martín Baró Lectureship Prize, Center for Latin American Studies, University of Chicago
  • 2006: Chicago Center for Contemporary Theory Pre-Doctoral Fellowship, University of Chicago
  • 2006: Center for Latin American Studies Field Research Grant, University of Chicago
  • 2006: Center for the Study of Race, Politics, and Culture Graduate Research and Travel Grant, University of Chicago
  • 2004: Center for Latin American Studies Tinker Research Grant, University of Chicago
  • 2004: Unendowed University Fellowship, University of Chicago