Eugenia Rainey

|Research Associate
Academic Appointments

Andrew W. Mellon Postdoctoral Fellow, Research Associate, and Lecturer

Connect with Us

Eugenia Rainey studies religion as negotiated process. She explores this process at the intersection of Lucumí, an Afro-Cuban religion, (also referred to as La Regla de Ochá or Santería) and medicine. Her work focuses on how the cultural competency paradigm that emerged out of Lyndon B. Johnson's Great Society influenced the adaptation of Lucumí practice outside of Cuba and racial identity formation in south Florida. Rainey's identity as Cape Verdean and multiracial inform her scholarship on processes of racialization in the United States and Latin America. With her thorough grounding in religious practice, her work highlights devotees' experiences and perceptions of the medical encounter. Through this research she seeks to better understand how the healthcare infrastructure impacts lived religion and how Lucumí in the US accommodates the healthcare needs of devotees as well as the healthcare infrastructure. Her research is supported by the Mellon Foundation, the Reed Foundation, as well as Tulane University and Dartmouth College.


Thornton, Room 210
HB 6036




  • PhD Tulane University (2022), Anthropology
  • MA Tulane University, Anthropology
  • MFA University of Nebraska, Omaha, Creative Writing
  • BA University of Chicago, Anthropology

Selected Publications

  •  "On Seeking Guidance." In Spirited Diasporas: New Frontiers and Futures of Afro-Atlantic Religions, edited by Martin Tsang. Gainesville, FL: University of Florida Press (August 2023)

    "What the Ghost of Madame Lalaurie Teaches Us About Systemic Racism," Teen Vogue, Decemebr 04, 2023

    "Pigeons at the Bedside: Negotiations Around Ritual Space in the Hospital" (Nova Religio 27.3, February 2024)

Works In Progress

We're not in Cuba Anymore: Religion as Negotiated Practice (monograph)


Selected Works & Activities

"Regla de Ocha in the Hospital". Cuba Counterpoints: Public Scholarship about a Changing Cuba: Ariana Hernandez-Reguant, March 2017

Electric Santeria: Racial and Sexual Assemblages of Transnational Religion by Aisha M Beliso-De Jesús." Cuba Counterpoints: Public Scholarship about a Changing Cuba: Ariana Hernandez-Reguant, November 2016

"Ayurveda: An Indian Medical System for the Ages." Healthcare Journal of New Orleans/of Baton Rouge: Smith W. Hartley, March/April 2018