Cristobal Bonelli is a post-doctoral fellow trained at the intersections of clinical psychology, social anthropology, and science and technology studies. After having worked for over ten years in mental health issues, democratic psychiatry, and systemic psychotherapy in Chile, Italy, Spain and Portugal, in 2008 he decided to pursue a Phd in Anthropology. His PhD thesis, finalized in October 2012, was a long-term ethnography that explores the relations between seeing and healing practices in different local settings. By pointing out the equivocal understandings of the visible and the invisible domains within intercultural relations, his thesis sought to explain why vision must be understood through ontological examination rather than through a multicultural approach. He showed how the co-existence of multiple healing practices ‘on the ground’ entails frictions and clashes, offering therefore important challenges to multicultural health policies.
Since October 2012, Cristobal works within ‘The Eating Body in Western Practice and Theory’ research team, led by Professor Annemarie Mol. Leading the team’s research line on ‘Radical Alterities’, his research has focused on the relations and interferences existing between anthropological generic-concepts and ethnographic materials concerning healing, seeing and eating practices.
Thanks to a Marie Curie Individual Fellowship hosted by UNESCO-IHE Institute for Water Education, Cristóbal’s future research project will develop an analytical framework to understand how social relations are affected by groundwater practices in the Atacama Desert of Northern Chile.