Participant Info

First Name
Last Name
Florida International University
Website URL
Latin America, Brazil, Afro-descendants, women and gender, motherhood, public health
Additional Contact Information

Personal Info

About Me

Dr. Okezi T. Otovo is Associate Professor of History and African and African Diaspora Studies and Affiliate Faculty of the Kimberly Green Latin American and Caribbean Center and of the Center for Women’s and Gender Studies at Florida International University.  She is author of Progressive Mothers, Better Babies: Race, Public Health, and the State in Brazil, 1850-1945 (University of Texas Press, 2016); a study that connects the history of cultural and medical ideas to the experiences of poor black families in institutions devoted to public health and social welfare within the context of abolition and state-building. Her current research investigates black maternity, racial disparities in health, and women’s life experiences in Miami (20th century). It analyzes black women’s bodily epistemologies in relation to their life histories, including experiences of sexuality, pregnancy, childbirth, and motherhood. At FIU, she teaches introductory, advanced, and graduate courses on Latin America, modern Brazil, and thematic topics such as gender, race, public health, and the social history of medicine. Dr. Otovo has published research articles in the Luso-Brazilian Review, Law and History Review, and the Revista da Associação Brasileira de Pesquisadores(as) Negros(as) as well as a number of book chapters and book reviews. She leads “The Black Mothers Care Plan” and “From Moments to Movements: Story-Telling as Epistemology in Black Maternal Health;” both are mixed research and community engagement projects.

Recent Publications
Media Coverage
Country Focus
Expertise by Geography
Latin America, United States
Expertise by Chronology
5, 8
Expertise by Topic
Emancipation, Family, Gender, Medicine, Race, Women