Dr. Hector M. Callejas is an IDEAL Provostial Fellow in the Department of Anthropology at Stanford University. He received his Ph.D. in Ethnic Studies from the University of California, Berkeley. He researches and teaches on race and racism in contemporary society, with a regional focus on Latin America.

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Academic Appointments

  • Lecturer, Anthropology

Current Research and Scholarly Interests

Hector investigates the governance of race and racism across contexts, scales, and processes. He uses ethnography, cultural analysis, and historical research to uncover why racial inequalities persist, and what the possibilities are for resistance, justice, and change.

Hector’s current project, "Limits of Indigeneity: Race, activism, and the state in El Salvador," explains how, why, and to what effects activists articulate discourses and visual images of Indigenous peoples to shape state action on race relations in the Central American country of El Salvador. It argues that this activism institutionalizes Indigeneity as a subject of modern governance in ways that limit advocacy, expand state power, and reinforce racial inequality in Salvadoran society. The project shows how this process unfolded between key institutions, actors, and publics during the 2010s, the decade when activists and officials established state recognition of Indigenous peoples under an emerging regime of national multiculturalism. The project foregrounds the limits of Indigeneity for resisting racism and the state, and the need for alternative political subjectivities to challenge colonial power structures in Latin America and beyond.

Hector has begun a new project on race and security in El Salvador. It focuses on the régimen de excepción, or state of exception. This relatively new and highly controversial governmental regime has received praise for making the country safe for ordinary citizens and foreigners, and criticism for imprisoning alleged gang members without due process. The project investigates how the production of national security intersects with race relations and related issues, such as Indigeneity, human rights, memory, territory, sovereignty, tourism, development, welfare, and the environment.

Hector's research is grounded in his lived experiences. He is from the Mexican community in Sacramento, California. His parents immigrated from El Salvador and Guatemala.

2023-24 Courses