is a Postdoctoral Researcher and Instructor in the Department of Race, Diaspora, and Indigeneity at the University of Chicago.
Maya's work is broadly about how people navigate violence across generations. Their recent research deals with crime, capital, and mutual aid in African and Chinese diasporic populations. Their current book project is an ethnographic and historical study of African American and Chinese American self- and community defense in New York City and the histories of extralegal neighborhood protection (e.g. gangs, neighborhood patrols and associations, etc.) that inform these present-day efforts towards safety.
Maya received their PhD in anthropology from Harvard University. They previously held a postdoctoral fellowship in the Center for the Study of Race and Ethnicity in America and the Watson Institute for International and Public Affairs at Brown University. They have taught in Department of Anthropology at Harvard and in the Management Communication Program in the Stern School of Business at New York University. Maya holds MA degrees in anthropology from Harvard University, the social sciences from the University of Chicago, and humanities and social thought from NYU. They received their undergraduate degree in social and cultural analysis from NYU.