30 May 2023 17:00 - 19:00 Online & Room SG1, Alison Richard Building, 7 West Road, Cambridge


An event organised by the Futures in Question research network.

This will be a hybrid event. Cambridge-based participants are invited to join us in person in room SG1 at the Alison Richard Building. Participants who would like to join us online, please register to receive the Zoom link.


  • Benjamin Fogarty-Valenzuela (Leiden University, Netherlands)
  • Maria Fernanda Tourinho Peres (University of Sao Paulo, USP)

About the speaker

Benjamin Fogarty-Valenzuela is a multimodal ethnographer and photographer. He joined Leiden University as Assistant Professor of Cultural Anthropology and Development Sociology after receiving his PhD in Anthropology from Princeton University, and working as a Mansueto Institute Fellow at the University of Chicago. His recent bi-lingual photo-ethnography, Art of Captivity (University of Toronto Press 2020), builds on four years of ethnographic research in Guatemala. His current book project, Pedagogies of Occupation: Free Time, Professionalization, and Protest in Brazil examines the politics, pedagogy, and policing of youth in urban Brazil, and is based on research that has been published in Current Anthropology and Cultural Anthropology. Building on two years of ethnographic fieldwork in Rio de Janeiro, the book explores three meanings of ‘occupation’, contributing to debates on the politics of time, work, citizenship, education and activism. His research has been funded by the Princeton Institute for International and Regional Study, Open Society Foundations, and the National Academy of Education/Spencer Foundation.

Maria Fernanda Tourinho Peres holds a BA in Medicine from the Federal University of Bahia (1994), an MA (1997) and PhD (2001) in Public Health from the Federal University of Bahia. She is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Preventive Medicine at the School of Medicine of the University of Sao Paulo (USP) and research coordinator at the Center for the Study of Violence at USP. She has experience in Public Health, focusing on Epidemiology, and is particularly interested in the following subjects: homicides, adolescence and youth, prevention of violence.


Since the very concept of ‘adolescence’ emerged in the early 20th century, it has been imbued with deep societal anxieties and hopes about the future. On the one hand, there is a long tradition of social scientists, medical experts, politicians and the media framing adolescents as dangerous subjects whose deviance portends of future crises and civilisational decay. In equal measure, however, adults have also framed adolescents as subjects that are full of potential and as portents of a brighter future. Poised between danger and promise, adolescents have accordingly been subjected to multiple modes of surveillance and knowledge-making practices.

In this session we will explore two different approaches to studying adolescents and their futures. Anthropologist Benjamin Fogarty-Valenzuela will share insights from his ethnographic study of a 64-day student-led protest occupation of a public high school in one of Rio de Janeiro’s working-class neighbourhoods. Epidemiologist and medical doctor Maria Fernanda Peres will share insights from Sao Paulo’s Study on the Social Development from Childhood to Adolescence, an interdisciplinary research project on the risk and protective factors of violent behaviour and victimisation in Brazil. Join us as we explore how ethnographic and epidemiological approaches to the study of adolescence can both complement and complicate each other!

For enquiries please contact the Research Networks Programme Manager.

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