American Philosophical Society
Member History

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4. Humanities[X]
403. Cultural Anthropology[X]
1Name:  Dr. Larissa Adler Lomnitz
 Institution:  Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México
 Year Elected:  2011
 Class:  4. Humanities
 Subdivision:  403. Cultural Anthropology
 Residency:  International
 Living? :   Deceased
 Birth Date:  1932
 Death Date:  April 19, 2019
Larissa Adler Lomnitz is a pioneer in the study of social networks who earned her Ph.D. from the Universidad Iberoamericana, Mexico in 1974. Her classic study of poor families in Mexico City showed how they mobilize social capital to survive under marginal economic conditions by using fictive kinship to expand networks and gain access to resources while diversifying risks. Her study of a Mexican entrepreneurial family, in contrast, revealed that elites limit their social networks to conserve social capital and marshal trust. Her study of school teachers in Chile drew upon social networks in much the same way as lower class urban dwellers to survive in the wake of restructuring. Based on this work, she developed an influential theory of informal network exchange that formed the basis of network theory in migration studies and social capital theory. She has also done formative work on the socialization of scientists and professionals within developing country settings. She won the Mexican National Prize for Social Science in 1990. She is the author of a number of books, including: Migration and Networks in Latin America, 1974; Networks and Marginality, 1975; (L. Adler Lomnitz, et al) Culture & Ideology: Anthropological Perspectives, 1982; (with M. Perez-Lizaur) A Mexican Elite Family, 1820-1980: Kinship, Class, and Culture, 1988; (with L. Meyer) La Nueva Clase, 1988; (L. Adler Lomnitz, et al) Chile’s Middle Class: A Struggle for Survival in the Face of Neoliberalism, 1991; Redes Sociales, Cultura, y Poder: Ensayos de Antropología Latinoamericana, 1994; (with A. Melnick) Chile’s Political Culture and Parties: An Anthropological Explanation, 2000; (with R. Salazar Elena, I. Adler) Simbolismo y Ritual en la Política Mexicana, 2004. She was elected a member of the American Philosophical Society in 2011.
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