John Hartigan, Professor of Anthropology and Director of the Americo Paredes Center for Cultural Studies, University of Texas at Austin

John Hartigan Jr., professor of Anthropology and director of the Americo Paredes Center for Cultural Studies at the University of Texas at Austin, will present a talk titled, "Looking for Race in the Mexican Book of Life: INMEGEN and the Mexican Genome Project," on Thursday, Sept. 23, at 4 p.m. in rm. 105 of the Hibben Center on UNM's main campus.

His talk will be about recent efforts to map the "Mexican genome," undertaken by the Instituto Nacional de Medicina Genómica (INMEGEN), a government-funded enterprise that aims to advance Mexico's participation in global genomic science.  Central claims made by INMEGEN are that the people of Mexico, and likely of all from Latin America, evidence a form of genetic distinctiveness that marks them off from the three populations – European, Asian, and African- sampled by the International Hap Map project.

Furthermore, Mexicans have their own genetic structure, characterized by an array of private alleles that were not found in the populations of Europe, Asia or Africa.  Hartigan examines these claims via a series of ethnographic interviews with lead geneticists at INMEGEN.  He poses a series of questions about how to critically evaluate the role of racial thinking in this genetic research project, given the different meanings that race entails in the U.S. and in Mexico.

For more information about the colloquium, contact Rebecca Schreiber at (505) 277-4524 or or Ronda Brulotte,

This lecture was sponsored by the Departments of American Studies, and Anthropology, the Anthropology Graduate Student Union, and LAII as well as the Alfonso Ortiz Center for Intercultural Studies.