Areas of Expertise & Civic Involvements
Gálvez is a cultural anthropologist specializing in immigration, Mexico, public health and reproductive health. She is especially interested in the efforts of immigrants to achieve the rights of citizenship and belonging and the ways that U.S. institutions work to welcome or to discourage such efforts. Founder of the Mexican Studies Institute at the City University of New York—first on the East Coast— and founder of a faculty network to support undocumented students, Gálvez is an advocate for immigrant students and their families. As a public intellectual, she strives to bring people-centered, inquiry-based and inductive research methods to the public sphere.
Examines the public health consequences of the North American Free Trade Agreement, noting the ways that US and Mexican social and economic policy have produced an epidemic of diet-related illness, even while the most marginalized members of society disproportionately affected by chronic disease bear the blame.
Argues that rather than a stable, static system for assigning rights and responsibilities, citizenship in the United States changes with the times, expanding and contracting with sentiments about racialized minorities and immigrants.
Traces the relationship between immigrant activism in the late 1990s and early 2000s to the undocumented youth movement two decades later, showing that youth were inspired by their parents’ generation to come out as undocumented, unafraid and unapologetic.
Examines the experiences of Mexican immigrant women in New York City’s public prenatal care system and finds that their healthful approach to pregnancy is challenged by care that overlooks their knowledge and echoes xenophobic discourses from the broader society.
Explores the ways that Mexican immigrants in New York strive for the rights and respect of citizenship through involvement in religious organizations and Catholic ritual activities.