Matthew Abel

Graduate Student of Sociocultural Anthropology

Research Interests

My research focuses on the cumulative impacts of government policy on rural social organization in Brazil's Amazon estuary region, and how smallholder farmers adapt social institutions to manage their relationship to new cycles of state developmentalism. Alongside previous ethnographic work with North American alternative agrifood activists, this project constitutes part of a broader interest in building links between political and environmental anthropology to examine how cycles of state intervention articulate with local social organization to constrain and enable possibilities for collective action over time.


Fulbright Fellow IIE, US State Department and Brazilian Fulbright Commission

Samuel Hughes Scholarship, Washington University

Beinecke Fellowship, Sperry Fund


contact info:

mailing address:

  • Washington University
  • CB 1114
  • One Brookings Drive
  • St. Louis MO 63130

research interests:

  • Environmental Anthropology
  • Development Politics
  • Social Movements
  • Amazon
  • Brazil
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