Visiting Assistant Professor of Anthropology
Ph.D., Joint Medical Anthropology Program, University of California – Berkeley & San Francisco
M.P.H., Community Health Education, Division of Health and Social Behavior, School of Public Health, University of California – Berkeley
B.A., American Studies, University of California – Santa Cruz
Chris Roebuck is a medical anthropologist, engaged in critical studies of science, medicine, and the body. His work contends with problematizations of "the human" and its intertwined molecular and molar milieu.
He is concerned with questions of power, knowledge, personhood, and governance of the living. He has taught courses in the history and theory of anthropology; anthropology of medicine, science, and technology; urban ethnography; and in feminist, queer, and trans* studies.
His book project is entitled, Workin’ It: Trans* Lives in the Age of Epidemics. It is an ethnographic accounting of precarious entanglements, linking molecular and ecological lifeworlds during the ongoing HIV crisis. It explores trans*/gender public cultures; trans*, queer, and AIDS political movements; transnational migrations; and economic transformations in San Francisco. It draws attention to cultivations of the self, practices of kin-making, techniques of care, and modes of flourishing amid a biosocial crisis.
He co-edited a special edition of the journal, Body and Society, entitled “Medical Migrations: Global Quests for Health and Life” and authored, in collaboration with the Transgender Law Center, How to Start a Transgender Health Clinic, a guide for patients, providers, and advocates.
Currently, he is at work on two projects. The first, “Chimeras are we?” examines the social, biomedical, and ethical implications of the Human Microbiome Project (HMP) – an N.I.H. sponsored, multidisciplinary effort whose goals include (1) identifying the genetic and metabolic characteristics of the trillion or so microorganisms whose ecology is the human body, and (2) describing how these symbionts shape health, illness, and transspecies ontologies. “Chimeras are we?” asks (a) how are findings from HMP (re)connecting the fields of microbiology and ecology, and (b) what sorts of planetary (bio)ethics follow upon conceptualizations of “the human” as a microcosmos?
His second project is in partnership with the “HIV Stigma Index," a United Nation’s Joint Programme on HIV/AIDS investigation of discrimination, criminalization, and violence experience by people living with HIV and AIDS. The community-driven project is a mixed-methods study taking place in 50 nations. Chris is a member of the North America Steering Committee, whose stated goal is to end HIV-related stigma and to ensure justice and the right to health for those living with, and affected by, HIV and AIDS.