In my scholarship, I draw on techniques from across anthropology, archaeology, and history to investigate the durabilities of colonialism and other forms of political violence, and how they inform present day political consciousness and imaginations of the future. I'm committed to operationalizing public history to meet social justice needs, to working collaboratively with local communities, and to envisioning a praxis of heritage as liberation.
I teach and research in the Department of Anthropology at the University of Michigan where I am also a curator of historical and contemporary archaeology in the Museum of Anthropological Archaeology (UMMAA). After finishing my PhD in Anthropology at the University of Pennsylvania, I held a Cotsen Postdoctoral Fellowship in the Society of Fellows for the Liberal Arts at Princeton, where I also lectured in the Anthropology Department and Humanities Council. I have a number of ongoing research projects but my primary fieldwork is based in Quintana Roo, Mexico where I help facilitate a community heritage initiative called the "Tihosuco Heritage Preservation and Community Development Project."
Beyond academics, I love traveling, being outside, cooking, reading black and indigenous speculative fiction, making crafty things, and family time. You'll also see my work published and presented under Tiffany C. Cain.