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Miranda Cady Hallett

Associate Professor of Anthropology and Human Rights Center Research Fellow, University of Dayton

Miranda Cady Hallett, Associate Professor of Cultural Anthropology and Human Rights Center Research Fellow, is a legal anthropologist who has conducted ethnographic fieldwork in El Salvador since 1998 and with Salvadoran immigrant communities in the US since 2004. Her interests, training and expertise lie at the intersection of Latin American studies (with a particular focus on El Salvador and the Central American region), migration studies and border theory, law and society, labor studies, research on Latinx identities, and the history and anthropology of state violence.

Her dissertation (Cornell University, 2009) examined Salvadoran migrants’ subjectivities and neoliberal ideologies in a small poultry industry town in central Arkansas. Her recent work focuses on mass detention and deportation as components of the regime of mass incarceration in the contemporary United States, exploring how these systems uphold broader mechanisms of labor exploitation and intersectional oppression. She has published on immigration and immigrants’ rights in numerous peer-reviewed journals, including Latino Studies and Law and Social Inquiry.

Hallett teaches courses in sex and gender, immigration, sustainability and place-based justice, and the anthropology of human rights. Her courses are center on provocation, dialogue, and experiential learning, requiring student participation and engagement. She is also an engaged public anthropologist with a commitment to human rights and social justice movements, and works to incorporate opportunities for community-based learning and social action into her courses.


  • –present
    Assistant Professor of Anthropology, University of Dayton


  • 2009 
    Cornell University, PhD/Sociocultural Anthropology