Stella Nair is a scholar of the built environment of indigenous communities in the Andes. Trained as an architect and architectural historian, Nair’s publications explore a range of subjects and regions such as lithic technology, the design of Inca royal estates, eighteenth century woven roofs,, and Brazilian urbanism. Nair’s current book project, “Inca Architecture: Chapters in the History of a (Gendered) Profession,” often a new perspective on Inca architecture and the critical roles that ephemeral practices and women played in the built environment. Nair’s previous book, At Home with the Sapa Inca: Architecture, Space, and Legacy at Chinchero (University of Texas, 2015), examines the sophisticated ways in which the Inca manipulated space and architecture to impose their authority. Nair has also published (with Jean-Pierre Protzen) a book entitled The Stones of Tiahuanaco: A Study of Architecture and Construction (Cotsen Institute of Archaeology Press, 2013), which explores one of the world’s most artful and sophisticated carving traditions. Nair has received been awarded fellowships from the American Academy of Rome, the American Philosophical Association, the Center for the Study of the Visual Arts, Dumbarton Oaks, the Fulbright Institute, the Getty Foundation, the Guggenheim Foundation, and the John Carter Brown Library. Most recently, Nair received the “Research Excellent Award” from the UCLA Center for the Study of Women in support of her book manuscript on Inca architecture and women.

Paul Niell is a scholar of the architecture and cultural landscapes of the Hispanophone Caribbean in the late eighteenth and early nineteenth centuries. His work is informed by interests in colonial theory, material culture studies, cultural landscape studies, the history of slavery, and critical heritage studies. On the revival, use, and reception of Greco-Roman classicism in late colonial and early national Latin America, he is co-editor with Dr. Stacie G. Widdifield of Buen Gusto and Classicism in the Visual Cultures of Latin America, 1790-1910, published by the University of New Mexico Press in 2013. His single-authored book, Urban Space as Heritage in Late Colonial Cuba: Classicism and Dissonance on the Plaza de Armas of Havana, 1754-1828, was published by the University of Texas Press in 2015. This work considers the commemoration of Havana’s foundational site in the late colonial period through the lens of critical heritage studies. His other publications and projects include “Architecture of Colonizers/Architecture of Immigrants: The Gothic in Latin America from the 16th to the 20th Centuries,” a 2015 special edition of the journal postmedieval: a journal of medieval cultural studies, co-edited with Richard A. Sundt of the University of Oregon that offers the first comprehensive treatment of the appropriation of European Gothic style in Latin America. His work has been supported by the American Philosophical Society, the Carl and Marilynn Thoma Foundation, and the Society of Architectural Historians.


Shannon Speed is a tribal citizen of the Chickasaw Nation of Oklahoma. She is Director of the American Indian Studies Center (AISC) and Professor of Gender Studies and Anthropology at UCLA. Dr. Speed has worked for the last two decades in Mexico and in the United States on issues of indigenous autonomy, sovereignty, gender, neoliberalism, violence, migration, social justice, and activist research. She has published numerous journal articles and book chapters in English and Spanish, and has published seven books and edited volumes, including her most recent, Incarcerated Stories: Indigenous Women Migrants and Violence in the Settler Capitalist State, which won the Best Subsequent Book Award of the Native American and Indigenous Studies Association in 2019 and a CHOICE Outstanding Academic Title award in 2020. She has a new co-edited volume entitled, Heightened States of Injustice: Activist Research on Indigenous Women and Violence (University of Arizona Press). Dr. Speed currently serves as the Past President of the Native American and Indigenous Studies Association (NAISA). In recent years, she was awarded the Chickasaw Dynamic Woman of the Year Award by the Chickasaw Nation, and the President’s Award by the American Anthropological Association.