Chris Batterman Cháirez

Chris Batterman Cháirez headshot
Cohort Year: 2019
Research Interests: Latin America; sound studies; critical race and Latina/o studies; death, dying, and violence; affect; philosophy
Education: BA, Emory University, 2019


As an ethnomusicologist, I am interested in music and sound’s intersection with the political, broadly defined. Drawing widely from sound studies, music studies, critical theory, Latina/o studies, ethnic studies, and anthropology, my work examines questions of race/ethnicity, nationalisms and cosmopolitanisms, (post)coloniality, and modernity in Latin American sonic contexts (specifically in Brazil and Mexico). To that end, much of my past work has interrogated questions of subjectivity, racialization, and affective politics in Brazil and greater Mexico. Past contexts for this research have included hip-hop and rap, Brazilian opera, and the protest music of the Chicano Movement. More recently, my work has explored music and sound’s material and affective functions at the interstices of death, dying, violence, and racial politics in indigenous, Afro-Latin American, Chicanx/Latinx communities. Here, I am interested in using affect theory, performance studies, and posthumanism as lenses toward developing theories and approaches to sound that allow us to unsettle and turn over our notions of music, affect, death, and, ultimately, humanism. 

As a musician, I’ve performed, recorded, and toured in various capacities with artists from the United States, Mexico, Brazil, and Korea. I continue to perform sporadically in jazz, Latin, hip-hop, and other popular music contexts.