Alicia Re Cruz | Department of Anthropology

Alicia Re Cruz

Dr. Alicia Re Cruz
Professor of Anthropology
General Academic Building 110D

Alicia Re Cruz works in the multifaceted field of migration since 1986, when she started a lifelong relationship with indigenous Mayas in Chan Kom, Yucatan, and the transformations provoked by the impact of out migration, mainly towards Cancún, the major international tourist emporium in the peninsula. On 1992, as an assistant professor of Anthropology at the University of North Texas, Dr. Re Cruz initiates her research on transnational migration, approached from a multiplicity of angles: 1) gender, 2) the cultural construction of space and place by immigrant communities, and 3) immigrant students in the education system.

The applied scholarship framework in the field of indigenous communities, border studies and migration has brought Dr. Re Cruz to numerous collaborations with international scholarly teams (CSIC-Spanish Academy of Sciences; DIALOG-Aboriginal Peoples Research and Knowledge Network, Canada; UQROO-Quintana Roo University, Mexico), and with local NGOs serving the large and diverse immigrant communities in programs related to VAWA (Violence Against Women Act), Human Trafficking, and Pro Se Asylum Clinics, assisting asylum seekers with their asylum applications. These are the ethnographic inspirational scenarios in her applied scholarship agenda. The product of this work is Emergency Anthropology, an anthropological praxis that demands an urgent intervention in contexts of violence.

At UNT, Dr. Re Cruz is a founding member of La Colectiva (, and member of the LMAS executive board ( Dr. Re Cruz has served as Chair of the Anthropology Department (2007-11), director of the Women's and Gender Studies and the LGBTQ Studies Programs (2016-2021). She is the recipient of the prestigious UNT Foundation Eminent Professor Award received in 2021.


1996 Doctorado Antropología Social y Cultural. Universidad Complutense de Madrid, Spain

1992 Ph.D. Anthropology. State University of New York at Albany

1987 M.A. Anthropology. State University of New York at Albany

1985 Licenciatura Geografía e Historia; especialidad de Etnología y Antropología de América, Universidad Complutense de Madrid, Spain


Books and Visual Ethnographies

2008, Re Cruz, Alicia. Producer, The Mayan Dreams of Chan Kom. Tourism, Migration and Changing Identities in the Yucatán. Distributed by University of Illinois Press with double issue in Journal of Film and Video. Volume 60, No. 2 & 3, Summer/Fall, 2008

2007, Aguado Odina, Teresa; Ballesteros Velásquez, Belén; Núñez-Janes, Mariela, Re Cruz, Alicia et. al. Racism: What It Is and How to Deal with It. A Guide to Talking about Racism. Austria: Navreme Publications.

1996, Re Cruz, Alicia. The Two Milpas of Chan Kom: Scenarios of a Maya Village Life. Albany: SUNY Press.

Edited Volumes

2013, Re Cruz, Alicia. (Guest editor) Special Issue on Contributions and Challenges of Intercultural Education. Anthropology in Action, Journal for applied anthropology in policy and practice. Vol. 20 (3). Winter

2008, Levin, Melinda & Alicia Re Cruz (eds.) Conversations between Anthropology and Film Making. Journal of Film and Video. Volume 60, No. 2 & 3.

2007, Re Cruz, Alicia, Christina Wasson, & Tyson Gibbs (eds.) Organizational, Conceptual and Pedagogical Intricacies in the Making of the On-line Program in Applied Anthropology. The North Texas Case. Practicing Anthropology. Vol. 29 (1)

Journal Articles

2023, Re Cruz, Alicia. Viñetas narrativas de mujeres centroamericanas buscando asilo en la frontera de México con Estados Unidos. Antropología Iberoamericana en Red (AIBR). Num. 18.1

2021, Re Cruz, Alicia. The Objectification of Suffering as Policy. The Damage Wrought: Immigration Before, Under, and After Trump. Alvarez A., Xitlalli, Denise Brennan & Gabrielle Olveira (eds.). Hot Spots. The Society for Cultural Anthropology. October 19. (Online publication)

2021, Pritchett, Malaika, Shahla Alai, Alicia Re Cruz.& Traci Cihon. Social Justice is the Spirit and

Aim of an Applied Science of Human Behavior: An Examination and Reflection on the

Variables Related to Moving from Colonial to Participatory Research. Behavior Analysis

in Practice 1-19. (Online publication.)

2019, Miller, Kristin, Alicia Re Cruz, & Shahla Alai-Rosales. Inherent Tensions and Possibilities: Behavior Analysis and Cultural Responsiveness. Behavior and Social Issues.

2017, Kober, Ryan & Alicia Re Cruz. Fluid Vulnerabilities of the Living Border: Central America Asylum Seekers in Texas. In Maintaining Refuge: Anthropological Reflections in Uncertain Times. Hines, D., Howell, J., and Keles F. A Publication of the Committee on Refugees and Immigrants (CORI). Society of Urban, National and Transnational/Global Anthropology. American Anthropological Association.

2017, Re Cruz, Alicia. Antropología de Emergencia en el trabajo con menores y mujeres centroamericanas en busca de asilo. Astrolabio. Revista Internacional de Filosofía, Universidad de Barcelona.

2013, Re Cruz, Alicia. "Why do they talk about Spirits": Anthropological Interventions in Classroom Settings with Latin@ Immigrant Students. Anthropology in Action, Journal for applied anthropology in policy and practice. Vol. 20 (3). Winter, pp.32-42.

2012, Re Cruz, Alicia. El Negro y el Café son Colores Feos. In Racismo y Educación. De la Invisibilidad a la evidencia. Hernández, Caridad. (ed.) Madrid: Complutense Publisher. ISBN: 978-84-9938-114-5

2009, Re Cruz, Alicia. When Immigrants Root and Transnational Communities Grow. Urban Anthropology (special issue on Transnational Mexican Migration). Volume 38 (2, 3, 4): 121-135.

2006, Re Cruz, Alicia. Turismo y Migración entre los Mayas de Yucatán: Las Nuevas Milpas de Chan Kom. In Revista Española de Antropología Americana. Universidad Complutense de Madrid, Spain 36(1):151

2005, Re Cruz, Alicia. Taquerías, Laundromats and Protestant Churches, the Landmarks of the Hispanic Barrios in Denton, Texas. In Urban Anthropology and Studies of Cultural Systems and World Economic Development 34(2-3):281-303.

2003, Re Cruz, Alicia. Milpa as an Ideological Weapon: Tourism and Maya Migration to Cancún. In Ethnohistory50(3):489-502.

2003, Re Cruz, Alicia. Milpa as an Ideological Weapon: Tourism and Maya Migration to Cancún. In Ethnohistory50(3):489-502

1998, Re Cruz, Alicia. Maya Women, Gender Dynamics, and Modes of Production. In Sex Roles, A Journal of Research 39 (7/8):573-587

1998, Re Cruz, Alicia. Migrant Women Crossing Borders. A Comparison of Internal and External Mexican Migration. In Journal of Borderland Studies XIII (2):83-97

1996, Re Cruz, Alicia. The Thousand and One Faces of Cancún. In Urban Anthropology and Studies of Cultural Systems and World Economic Development 25(3):283-310

Book Chapters

2022, Prittchet, Malika., Traci Cihon, Shahla Alai-Rosales & Alicia Re Cruz. From Fuller to Fawcett: A Human Rights History of Research Ethics In Behavior Analysis. In (Eds). Cox, Syed, Brodhead, & Quigley) Research Ethics in Behavior Analysis: From Laboratory to Clinic and Classroom

2021, Alai, Shahla. & Alicia Re Cruz. Finding Spirit: Teaching in Nepantla. (In Sadavoy & Zube, Eds.) Metacontingencies: Behavior Analysis of Compassion, Social Justice, & Being Human. Taylor Francis Publishing

2019, Nuñez-Janes, Mariela, Amelia Kraehe, Alicia Re Cruz, Valerie Martinez-Ebers, and Bertina H. Combes. "Collective Bravery: La Colectiva." In Counternarratives from Women of Color Academics: Bravery, Vulnerability and Resistance. Whitaker, M. and E. A. Grollman (eds.). London: Routledge/Taylor & Francis.

2018, Re Cruz, Alicia. Cuando fronteras y testimonios se confabulan para el surgimiento de una Antropología de Emergencia. In Género, migraciones y derechos humanos. Cortés, Almudena and Josefina Manjarrez (eds.) Barcelona: Editions Bellaterra.

2014, Re Cruz, Alicia. Ética y poder en la intervención antropológica. Gestión del acceso al campo y devolución de los resultados. Osuna, C. and P. Mata-Benito (Eds.). Madrid: Traficantes de Sueños.

2010, Re Cruz, Alicia. De Responsabilidades, Compromisos y otras Reflexiones que llevan a la Antropología Aplicada. In Dilemas Éticos en Antropología. Las Entretelas del Trabajo de Campo Etnográfico. Margarita del Olmo (ed). Ed. Trotta., Madrid.

2009, Nuñez-Janes, Mariela and Alicia Re Cruz. El Uso de Historias Digitales como Herramienta Pedagógica. In Integración Escolar a Debate. Madrid: Editorial Pearson-Prentice Hall.

2008, Re Cruz, Alicia. Chan Kom, Tourism and Migration in the Making of the New Maya Milpas. In Yucatan in the Era of Globalization. Blakanoff, E. (ed.) University of Alabama Press.

2007, Re Cruz, Alicia. Maya Watching Japanese Telenovelas; The Other too Close. In Alternative Orientalism in Latin America and Beyond. Cambridge Scholars Press.

2006, Re Cruz, Alicia. La Ética en el Discurso Académico y de Investigación Antropológica. In IV Congreso de Investigadores del Instituto Nacional de Antropología e Historia, Lopez-Razagado, M.I., Morales, C. and Lechuga, C. (eds.) Delegación D II IA1. Secc. 10 del SNTE, México D.F.

2006, Re Cruz, Alicia. Corn Milpas and Tourism Milpas: Maya Migration in Cancún. In Lifeways in the Lowlands: New Approaches to Maya Archaeology. Mathews, Jennifer and Bethany Morrison (eds.) University of Arizona Press.

2004, Re Cruz, Alicia. Working with Peoples and Places through Action. In Rights, Resources, Culture and Conservation in the Land of the Maya. Anderson, G. and B. Faust (eds.) Greenwood Publishing Group Inc.

2001, Re Cruz, Alicia. Fortunes and Misfortunes in "The Other Cancún". In Contemporary Cultures and Societies of Latin America. A Reader in the Social Anthropology of Middle and South America. Third Edition Heath (ed.) Waveland Press.

Courses Taught at UNT

Undergraduate Courses

ANTH 3101 American Culture and Society

ANTH 3200 Latin America

ANTH 3210 Mesoamerica

ANTH 3220 Maya Culture

ANTH 4021 Development and Anthropological Thought

ANTH 4300 Migrants and Refugees

ANTH 4770.001 Ethnographic Field School in Mexico

ANTH 4701.001 Borderlands: The U.S.-Mexico Border (experiential learning course with 1 week stay with NGO in El Paso. Co-taught with Andrew Nelson and Mariela Nuñez-Janes.

Graduate Courses

ANTH 5021Thought and Praxis II (online)

ANTH 5050 Pre-Practicum (online)

ANTH 5300 Migrants and Refugees

ANTH 5710 Symbolic/Cognitive Anthropology

WGST 5400 Human Trafficking and Gender