Camille Giraut, a first year Anthropology and Sociology PhD candidate, was recently awarded the Doc.ch Grant by the Swiss National Science Foundation (2019).
Camille's project, entitled 'Affirmative Action and Reconceptualization of Race: The positionnings of Black Collectives in Brazil', analyses the disputes around the meaning of 'race' in the context of the implementation of verification commissions. In the aftermath of the implementation of racial quotas in Brazilian public universities and civil servant positions, verification commissions were declared mandatory by a Federal law in 2016, in order to validate the self-identification of candidates who identify as black, brown or indigenous. Different sectors of the Brazilian black movement are engaged against frauds of white individuals, who are accused of taking advantage of miscegenation discourses to gain access to racial quotas. However, the implementation of the verification commissions is decentralised and discussed within each institution. The goal of Camille's research is to understand how debates between university administrators, faculty and the Black collectives lead to a reconceptualisation of race, and to what extent it modifies the relationships within the groups concerned by those politics.
At the intersection of different research fields, i.e. identity politics, racial inequalities, and social movements, her ethnographic project aims to understand how the institutionalisation of racial categories modifies the way individuals represent themselves individually and collectively.