Jaime Alves

Photo of Jaime Alves
Assistant Professor
Black Studies
Infrastructural violence | Racialized policing practices | Urban security dynamics | Colombia and Brazil


Jaime A. Alves holds a Ph.D. in Social Anthropology from the University of Texas at Austin. Before coming to UCSB, he taught Cultural Anthropology and Latin American Politics at the College of Staten Island of the City University of New York and was a visiting professor in the Center for African Diaspora Studies at Universidad Icesi. He is the author of The Anti-Black City: Police Terror and Black Urban Life in Brazil (University of Minnesota Press, 2018). His publications have also appeared in Antipode: a Radical Journal of Geography, PoLAR: Political and Legal Anthropology, and Third World Quarterly, among others. Jaime's current research focuses on geographies of policing and black spatial insurgency in the urban margins of Latin American cities. More specifically, he is interested in making ethnographically visible how black life is sustained and lived in the intersections of infrastructural violence, racialized policing practices, and broad urban security dynamics in Colombia and Brazil. The core of his long-term political project, which he names as Blackpolis, is to identify unapologetic forms of (black) ungovernability comprised by mundane outlawed practices - such as gang territorialities, informal housing settlements, bus fare-evasion, drug-dealing, and countless self-help-initiatives - that challenge the security state and that create conditions for livable black life within antiblack urbanities constituted by/in black (social) death.