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The primary focus of my research to date has been the ethnographic study of Christianity and the intersecting themes of gender, cultural change, and religious authority.  My recently published book Negotiating Respect: Pentecostalism, Masculinity, and the Politics of Spiritual Authority in the Dominican Republic (University Press of Florida 2016), which was awarded the 2017 Barbara T. Christian Literary Award for the Best Book in the humanities by the Caribbean Studies Association, is an ethnographic investigation of Pentecostal Christianity—the Caribbean’s fastest growing religious movement—in the context of urban poverty in the Dominican Republic.  Based on extensive fieldwork in a barrio of Villa Altagracia, Negotiating Respect examines the everyday practices of Pentecostal community members and the complex ways in which they negotiate legitimacy, recognition, and spiritual authority within the context of religious pluralism and Catholic cultural supremacy.  Probing the interconnections of gender, faith, and identity from an anthropological perspective, I consider in detail the lives of young male churchgoers and their struggles with conversion and life in the streets.  I show that conversion offers both spiritual and practical social value because it provides a strategic avenue for prestige and an acceptable way to transcend personal history.  By demonstrating how this particular theology shapes gender roles and identities, I highlight one of the primary contributions of Pentecostal Christianity to processes of social and cultural change today.  An exploration of the church and its relationship to barrio institutions like youth gangs and Dominican vodú, further draws out the meaningful nuances of lived religion and provides new insights into the social organization of spiritual authority locally and the cultural significance of Pentecostal growth and popularity globally.  By focusing on the cultural politics of belief and the role religious identity plays in poor urban communities, Negotiating Respect illuminates the social dynamics of Pentecostal culture in practice and offers a fresh perspective on religious pluralism and contemporary religious and cultural change.