Light Carruyo

Associate Professor and Chair of Sociology

Light Carruyo is an Associate Professor of Sociology and Latin American/Latinx Studies and is currently Chair of the Sociology Department.   

Dr. Carruyo studies the gendered and racialized dimensions of nation building and economic development. This stream of research in Venezuela, the Dominican Republic and the United States has led to publications that include the book Producing Knowledge, Protecting Forests: Rural Encounters with Gender, Ecotourism, and International Aid in the Dominican Republic, (Penn State University Press 2008) and articles such as, “El conocimiento local ¿es local?” In Construcción de Conocimientos para la Igualdad (INTEC, 2012) and “La Gaita Zuliana: Music and the Politics of Protest in Venezuela” in Latin American Perspectives (reprinted in Ian Peddie’s Music and Protest (Ashgate 2012). 

Carruyo is also interested in comparative racialization, gender and work, qualitative methods, and critical pedagogies. Most recently she has delved into Vassar College’s Archives and Special Collections to research Lucy Maynard Salmon’s contributions to the social sciences during her time as a Vassar professor from 1887-1927. From this research Carruyo has published “Gender, Race and the Status of Household Labor in Lucy Maynard Salmon’s Domestic Service (1897).”  Carruyo’s book manuscript in progress, tentatively titled Teaching and Learning at Certainty’s Edge, brings together her commitment to critical pedagogies and interdisciplinary methods. At Vassar, she has served as Co-Chair of the Committee on Inclusion and Excellence (2010-2012), Director of Exploring Transfer (2013-2015); Director of the Latin American and Latinx Studies Program (2014-2017) and Faculty House Fellow, Milo P. Jewett House (2014-2018). 

BA, Oberlin College; MA, PhD, University of California-Santa Barbara
At Vassar since 2002


Blodgett Hall
Box 517
Tuesday 12–1pm; Thursday 3:15–4:15pm


Regularly Taught Courses

  • Introduction to Sociology (SOCI 151)
  • Transnational Perspectives on Women and Work (SOCI/LALS/WFQS 214)
  • Feminism, Knowledge, Practice (SOCI/WFQS 321)
  • First Year Writing Seminar (LALS 106; SOCI 113)

Experimental Intensives

  • Border(s): Visually Representing Human Rights and Personhood (originating in the Latin American/Latinx Studies Program)
  • Latina Writers and the Sociological Imagination


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