Wesleyan portrait of Daniella  Gandolfo

Daniella Gandolfo

Associate Professor of Anthropology

Winchester House, 22

Chair, Anthropology

Winchester House, 22

Associate Professor, Latin American Studies

Co-Coordinator, Urban Studies

Winchester House,


BA Pontificia Universidad Catolica del Peru
MA University of Texas Austin
PHD Columbia University

Daniella Gandolfo

Since doing graduate fieldwork in Lima, my native city, I have been drawn to forms of sacred experience in everyday life. Whether through taboo and transgression, risk-taking and loss, or animal and self-sacrifice, my work examines the various forms of excess generated in events and actions at the limit of reasonableness and human sociality. I have written about transgression and politics in the context of urban renewal; urban policy and the so-called underclasses; risk, waste, and sovereign power in extra-legal markets; and the role of animality in social life and ritual.

Selected publications:

"Anti-Architecture and the Power of the Tellurian in Lima," forthcoming in Journal of Latin American and Caribbean Anthropology

"Crowds." Con-text-ure. Romero, Andrés and Megan J. Gette (Eds.). Visual and New Media Review, Fieldsights, October 3, 2019. https://culanth.org/fieldsights/crowds

"Lumpen Politics: A Day in The Pit." Comparative Studies in Society and History 60:3, 2018.

"Investigations of a Guinea Pig." Social Text 35: 3 (132), 2017.

"Conversations with a Hunter." Pandian, Anand and Stuart McLean (Eds.), Crumpled Paper Boat: Experiments in Ethnographic Writing. Durham, N.C.: Duke University Press, 2017.

"El alcalde y la barrendera: Georges Bataille, transgresión, y política en Lima." In Drinot, Paulo (Ed.), El Perú en teoría. Lima: Fondo Editorial del Instituto de Estudios Peruanos, 2017.

"The Street Sweeper and the Mayor: George Bataille, Transgression, and Politics in Lima." In Drinot, Paulo (Ed.), Peru in Theory. London: Palgrave, 2014.

"Formless: A Day at Lima’s Office of Formalization." Cultural Anthropology 28: 2, 2013.

The City at its Limits: Taboo, Transgression, and Urban Renewal in Lima. Chicago, Ill.: The University of Chicago Press, 2009.

Academic Affiliations

Office Hours

Spring 2024: Mondays 2-3pm via Zoom and Thursdays 1-2pm in person in my office. For either Zoom or in-person office hours, please sign up on calendly.com/dmgandolfo.


Spring 2024
ANTH 103F - 01
Anthro of Gifts and Giving FYS

ANTH 254 - 01
Self and Other (CLAC.50)

Fall 2024
ANTH 208 - 01
Crafting Ethnography

ANTH 249 - 01
Metropolis to Megalopolis