Diana Espírito Santo

Academic degree: Doctorate
Category: Associated researchers
Institutional subunit: NOVA FCSH
Research group: Circulation and Place-Making
Thematic line:
Research interests: Possesion | Personhood | Religious learning
Research contexts: Cuba | Brazil
Contact: gimmefish@yahoo.com
More information: link

Biographical note

Diana Espírito Santo studied psychology, philosophy and anthropology at the London School of Economics before completing her PhD in Social Anthropology at the University College London in 2009. In her doctoral dissertation, she focused on processes of learning and the construction of selfhood among mediunity practitioners of Cuban-Creole Spiritism. Her monograph, entitled “Developing the Dead: Mediumship and Selfhood in Cuban Espiritismo” was published by the University Press of Florida in 2015. Her recent postdoctoral work — based at the Instituto de Ciências Sociais (UL) from 2009 to 2012, and at CRIA/FCSH-UNL from 2012 to 2015 — examined the relationship between cosmology, social history and creative experience in the Afro-Brazilian religious practice of Umbanda in Rio de Janeiro and São Paulo. Her theoretical interests include the anthropology of knowledge and divination, cognition and learning, material culture and morality, dreams, and ontologies of the self. She now works as an assistant professor at the Pontificia Universidad Católica de Chile and is developing a project on Chilean and Argentinian parapsychologists.

Publications
AuthorID_filtro_tablepressYearTypePublication
Diana Espírito Santopub338*2013Edited bookBLANES, Ruy; ESPÍRITO SANTO, Diana (orgs.), 2013, The Social Life of Spirits, Chicago, University of Chicago Press, ISBN: 978-0-226-08177-9.
Diana Espírito Santopub338*2008ArticleESPÍRITO SANTO, Diana, 2008, "The power of the dead: spirits, socialism and selves in an Afro-Cuban universe", in Fieldwork in Religion, 3 (2): 161-177.
Diana Espírito Santopub338*2009Book chapterESPÍRITO SANTO, Diana, 2009, 'Cuba, Struggle for Independence from Spain, 1868-1898’, in Immanuel Ness (ed.), The International Encyclopedia of Revolution and Protest, London, Blackwell.
Diana Espírito Santopub338*2009ArticleESPÍRITO SANTO, Diana, 2009, "Making dreams: spirits, vision, and the ontological effects of dream knowledge in Cuban espiritismo", Suomen Antropologi (Journal of the Finnish Anthropological Society), 34 (3): 6-24.
Diana Espírito Santopub338*2012ArticleESPÍRITO SANTO, Diana, 2012, "Imagination, sensation and the education of attention among Cuban spirit mediums", Ethnos, 77 (2): 252-271, special issue 'Learning Possession’, edited by Vlad Naumescu and Arnaud Halloy, ISSN 0014-1844.
Diana Espírito Santopub338*2013ArticleESPÍRITO SANTO, Diana, 2013, "Fluid divination: movement, chaos and the generation of 'noise’ in Afro-Cuban spiritist oracular production", Anthropology of Consciousness, 24 (1): 32-56, E-ISSN: Online ISSN: 1556-3537.
Diana Espírito Santopub338*2013Book chapterESPÍRITO SANTO, Diana, 2013, "Materiality, cosmogony and presence among Cuban spirits and mediums”, in Diana Espírito Santo, Nico Tassi (orgs.), Making Spirits: Materiality and Transcendence in Contemporary Religions, London, I. B. Tauris, pp. 33-56, ISBN: 978-1-84885-796-4.
Diana Espírito Santopub338*2013Book chapterESPÍRITO SANTO, Diana, 2013, "Moralidade e materialismo: uma aproximação à cosmopolítica das relações entre espíritas 'científicos’ e 'cruzados’ em Cuba", in Gamaliel da Silva Carneiro, et al. (orgs.), Todas as Águas Vão para o Mar: Poder, Cultura e Devoção nas Religiões, São Luís, Editora da UFMA.
Diana Espírito Santopub338*2013ArticleESPÍRITO SANTO, Diana, 2013, "Observaciónes sobre la relación entre la ’cosmo-lógica’ y la construcción de la persona en el espiritismo cubano", Ateliers d’anthropologie (online journal), 38.link
Diana Espírito Santopub338*2014Book chapterESPÍRITO SANTO, Diana, 2014, "Developing the dead: an ethnographic account of spirits and selves in Cuban espiritismo", in J. Hunter, D. Luke (orgs.), Talking with the Spirits: Ethnographies from between the Worlds, Brisbane, Daily Grail Publishing, pp. 177-205, ISBN: 978-0987422446.
Diana Espírito Santopub338*2014ArticleESPÍRITO SANTO, Diana, 2014, "Plasticidade e pessoalidade no espiritismo crioulo cubano", Mana, 20 (1): 63-93, ISSN: 0104-9313.
Diana Espírito Santopub338*2015Book chapterESPÍRITO SANTO, Diana, 2015, "'Pa’que tu me llamas, si no me conoces?': spiritist performative technologies in the creation of cosmology", in Diana Espírito Santo, Anastasios Panagiotopoulos (orgs.), Beyond Tradition, Beyond Invention: Cosmic Technologies and Creativity in Contemporary Afro-Cuban Religions, Canon Pyon, Sean Kingston Publishing, pp. 56-80, ISBN: 978-1-907774-37-9.
Diana Espírito Santopub338*2015ArticleESPÍRITO SANTO, Diana, 2015, "Algumas observações em torno da renovação na Umbanda urbana contemporânea", Mneme: Revista de Humanidades, 15 (34): 122-150.link
Diana Espírito Santopub338*2015ArticleESPÍRITO SANTO, Diana, 2015, "Desagregando o espiritual: a fabricação de pessoas e de complexos espírito-matéria em prática mediúnicas afro-cubanas", Religião e Sociedade, 31 (1): 216-236.link
Diana Espírito Santopub338*2015ArticleESPÍRITO SANTO, Diana, 2015, "Liquid sight, thing-like words, and the precipitation of knowledge substances in Cuban espiritismo", Journal of the Royal Anthropological Institute, 21 (3): 579-596.link
Diana Espírito Santopub338*2015Book chapterESPÍRITO SANTO, Diana, 2015, "Purgando la otredad: muertos, visión, y self-scaping en el sueño dentro de la religión afro-cubana", in P. Di Giminiani, S. Gonzalez Valera, M. Murray, H. Risor (orgs.), Tecnologias en los Margenes: Antropología, Mundos Materiales y Técnicas en América Latina, Ciudad de México, Bonilla Artigas Editores, pp. 125-150, ISBN: 978-607-8348-78-7.
Diana Espírito Santopub338*2015ArticleESPÍRITO SANTO, Diana, 2015, "Turning outside in: infolded selves in Cuban creole espiritismo", Ethos, 43 (3): 267-285.link
Diana Espírito Santopub338*2015BookESPÍRITO SANTO, Diana, 2015, Developing the Dead: Mediumship and Selfhood in Cuban Espiritismo, Gainesville, FL, University Press of Florida, ISBN: 978-0-8130-6078-1.
Diana Espírito Santopub338*2016ArticleESPÍRITO SANTO, Diana, 2016, "Clothes for spirits: opening and closing the cosmos in Brazilian Umbanda", HAU: Journal of Ethnographic Theory, 6 (3): 85-106.link
Diana Espírito Santopub338*2016ArticleESPÍRITO SANTO, Diana, 2016, "Recursivity and the self-reflexive cosmos: tricksters in Cuban and Brazilian spirit mediumship practices", Social Analysis, 60 (1): 37-55.link
Diana Espírito Santopub338*2016ArticleESPÍRITO SANTO, Diana, 2016, "Spirits, spies and lies in Havana: unwitting and paranoid entanglements between ethnographer and field", Journal for the Study of Religious Experience, 2: 87-104.link
Diana Espírito Santopub338*2013Book chapterESPÍRITO SANTO, Diana; BLANES, Ruy, 2013, "Introduction: on the agency of intangibles”, in Ruy Blanes, Diana Espírito Santo (orgs.), The Social Life of Spirits, Chicago, University of Chicago Press, pp. 1-32, ISBN: 978-0-226-08177-9.
Diana Espírito Santopub338*2013ArticleESPÍRITO SANTO, Diana; KERESTETZI, Katerina; PANAGIOTOPOULOS, Anastasios, 2013, "Human substances and ontological transformations in the African-inspired religious complex of Palo Monte in Cuba”, Critical African Studies, 5 (3): 195-219, ISSN: 2168-1392, E-ISSN: 2040-7211.
Diana Espírito Santopub338*2015Edited bookESPÍRITO SANTO, Diana; PANAGIOTOPOULOS, Anastasios (orgs.), 2015, Beyond Tradition, Beyond Invention: Cosmic Technologies and Creativity in Contemporary Afro-Cuban Religions, Canon Pyon, Sean Kingston Publishing, ISBN: 978-1-907774-37-9.
Diana Espírito Santopub338*2015Book chapterESPÍRITO SANTO, Diana; PANAGIOTOPOULOS, Anastasios, 2015, "Inventive traditions: a short introduction to Afro-Cuban religiosity", in Diana Espírito Santo, Anastasios Panagiotopoulos (orgs.), Beyond Tradition, Beyond Invention: Cosmic Technologies and Creativity in Contemporary Afro-Cuban Religions, Canon Pyon, Sean Kingston Publishing, pp. 1-36, ISBN: 978-1-907774-37-9.
Diana Espírito Santopub338*2013Edited bookESPÍRITO SANTO, Diana; TASSI, Nico (orgs.), 2013, Making Spirits: Materiality and Transcendence in Contemporary Religions, London, I.B. Tauris , ISBN: 978-1-84885-796-4.
Diana Espírito Santopub338*2013Book chapterESPÍRITO SANTO, Diana; TASSI, Nico, 2013, "Introduction”, in Diana Espírito Santo, Nico Tassi (orgs.), Making Spirits: Materiality and Transcendence in Contemporary Religions, London, I. B. Tauris, pp. 1-32, ISBN 978-1-84885-796-4.
Projects

IDResearcherPositionProjTitleProject typeStatus+
pub338*Diana Espírito SantoResearcherproj10*"Selfing": contact, magic and the constitution of personhoodNational projectConcluded+
pub338*Diana Espírito SantoResearch scholarproj34*Cosmological innovation in contemporary Brazilian Umbanda and its impact on inter-religious self-definition and legitimationPost-doctoral researchConcluded+