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Selina R. Gallo-Cruz


Associate Professor
Sociology and Anthropology

Gender, Sexuality, and Women's Studies
Latin American and Latino Studies
Peace and Conflict Studies


Ph.D. Emory University


Fields: culture; global political and economic change; social movements and peace movements; gender and women’s movements; NGOs; nonviolence; methods; social theory

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Office Phone: 508-793-3468
Office: Beaven 223
PO Box: 214A
Office Hours


I am a cultural and political sociologist working in the fields of globalization, conflict, and social movements studies. My research has focused on how changing narratives and belief systems fold into the development of political conflicts and movements for social change. My book manuscript is entitled, (In)visibility and Resistance, and comparatively examines the effects of political invisibility on three women’s movements against state violence in Argentina, Serbia, and Liberia. In the manuscript, I identify the social attributes of invisibility that significantly shape the distinctive outcomes for different actors mobilized in periods of high repression and violence. The trajectories of these three movements, which developed in culturally and politically distinctive contexts, illuminate how political invisibility and social status can present unique opportunities to marginalized resisters, especially as they move into an international arena, where they experience amplified authority as human rights leaders. I have also conducted research on the role of international NGOs in the global spread of nonviolence, on developments in US foreign military training in Latin America, on gender and stratification in social movement studies, and developments in social theory.

My research has been published in International Sociology, Research in Social Movements, Conflict, and Change, Sociological Forum, Social Movement Studies, Sociology Compass, The International Studies Compendium, The European Journal of Cultural and Political Sociology, Interface: a journal for and about social movements, Advances in Medical Sociology, and Social Theory and Health, among other edited volumes. I have served as a Gender, Conflict, and Peacebuilding Fellow at the Kroc Institute for International Studies at Notre Dame and as a Visiting Research Fellow at the University of New Mexico. I earned my BA in Sociology from Wellesley College and my Master’s and PhD degrees in Sociology from Emory University where I held a Laney Diversity Fellowship and an American Sociological Association Minority Dissertation Fellowship. I actively serve the Collective Behavior and Social Movements and Peace, War and Social Conflict sections of the American Sociological Association, I serve as the coordinator for the Global and Transnational Sociology Social Movements research cluster, and I am the book review editor for Humanity & Society.

At College of the Holy Cross I teach a number of courses on general and special topics in Sociology, including a Montserrat first-year seminar on Global Inequality, The Sociological Perspective, Gender and Society, Developments in Social Theory, Social Movements and Social Change, and an upper level seminar entitled Women and Nonviolence. In 2017 my seminar students collected and contributed interviews with Worcester Women peace activists to Worcester Women’s History Project Oral History Archives housed at the Schlesinger Library at Harvard University. I am currently a member of the Steering Council of the Worcester Women’s History Project and direct Holy Cross students’ community-based learning with the WWHP. In the 2019-2020 academic year, I am working with local community organizers to pilot a Mellon Scholarship in Action funded program to bring grassroots civics education into Worcester public schools. I am also undertaking a year-long teacher training program through the Shelburne Farms Climate Resiliency Fellowship.  I enjoy working with students at all levels, from the first-year transition into college to the development of Honors theses, independent research, and preparation for professional development and post-graduate study.

Recent Publications

Gallo-Cruz, Selina.  2018 . “American Mothers of Nonviolence: Action and the Politics of Erasure in Women’s Nonviolent Activism” in 100 Years of the Nineteenth Amendment: An Appraisal of US Women’s Activism, edited by Holly J. McCammon and Lee Ann Banaszak, eds. Oxford: Oxford University Press.

Cormier Nick, Gallo-Cruz, Selina, and Beard, RenĂ©e. 2017. “Navigating the New, Transplanted Self: Recipients Manage the Cognitive Risks of Organ Transplantation”
Sociology of Health and Illness 39 (8): 1496 - 1513.

Gallo-Cruz, Selina. 2016. “The Insufficient Imagery of Top Down, Bottom Up in Global Analysis.” Social Movement Studies Vol 16 (2).

Gallo-Cruz, Selina. 2016. “More Powerful Forces? Gender, Nonviolence, and Mobilization” Sociology Compass. September (1-13).

Gallo-Cruz. 2016. “Weaving Political Fields: Nonviolent INGOs and the Global Grassroots” European Journal of Cultural and Political Sociology 3(2-3): 243-279.

Gallo-Cruz, Selina. 2015. “Protest and Public Relations: The Reinvention of the US Army School of the Americas.” Interface: a journal for and about social movements 7(1): 322- 350.

Gallo-Cruz, Selina. 2013. “Cleansing Our Hands of the Dirty War: The Colombian Domestication of Human Rights.” Pp. 181-196 in National Policy Making: Domestication of Global Trends, edited by Pertti Alasuutaari and Ali Qadir. New York: Routledge.

Gallo-Cruz, Selina. 2012. “Organizing Global Nonviolence: The Growth and Spread of Nonviolent INGOs, 1948-2003.” Research in Social Movements, Conflict, and Change, 34: 213-256.

Gallo-Cruz, Selina. 2012. “Negotiating the Lines of Contention: Counterframing and Boundary-work in the School of the Americas Debate.” Sociological Forum 27 (1): 21-45.

Boli, John, Selina Gallo-Cruz, and Matthew Mathias. 2011. “World Polity Theory.” In The International Studies Compendium Project, edited by Robert A. Denemark. Oxford: Blackwell Publishing Ltd.