Sociology Faculty

Naya Jones
  • Pronouns she, her, her, hers, herself
  • Title
    • Assistant Professor & Core Faculty in Global and Community Health Program
  • Division Social Sciences Division
  • Department
    • Sociology Department
  • Affiliations Environmental Studies Department
  • Phone
  • Email
  • Website
  • Office Location
    • Rachel Carson College Academic Building, 322
  • Mail Stop Rachel Carson College Faculty Services
  • Mailing Address
    • 1156 High St.
    • Santa Cruz CA 95064
  • Faculty Areas of Expertise African Diaspora, African American / Black Studies, Environmental Studies, Critical Race and Ethnic Studies, Latin American and Latino Studies, Social Justice
  • Courses SOCY 143: Black Botanical Medicine in the Americas; SOCY 135: Healing Justice; SOCY 196S: Race, Somatics, and Food Pedagogy; SOCY 240: Inequality and Identity; SOCY 290: Autoethnography

Summary of Expertise



Research Interests

Black diaspora geographies of community health, healing, and food justice (global, but especially North and Latin America); Black ecologies; Black feminist geographies; relational approaches to Black, Latinx, and Indigenous geographies; Black diaspora botany; human-plant relationships; critical food studies; healing justice; ancestral healing ways and activism; practice and politics of Traditional and Indigenous ecological knowledge; critical pedagogies; somatic or embodied pedagogies; autoethnography and testimonio; arts-based methods.

Biography, Education and Training

Postdoctoral Fellowship in Primary Care Research - Medical College of Wisconsin

PhD, Geography & the Environment -  University of Texas at Austin

MA, Latin American Studies - University of Texas at Austin


Honors, Awards and Grants

Selected Recent Awards/Grants

2021-2022 | Sprout Grant (UCSC Institute for Social Transformation)


2020-2021 | Anne S. Chatham Fellowship for Medicinal Botany (Garden Club of America) 


2020-2021 | Folk Arts Apprenticeship Grant w/ Ms. Angela Smith (Wisconsin Arts Board)


2017-2020 | Culture of Health Leader (Robert Wood Johnson Foundation)

Selected Publications

  • Jones, N. 2023. "Reimagining Freire: Beyond Human Relations." Cultural Studies of Science Education, 18.


  • Hirsch, L. and Jones, N. 2021. "Incontestable: Imagining Possibilities through Intimate Black Geographies." Transactions of the Institute of British Geographers, Access >>   


  • Jones, N. 2021. "Prologue: Black Dream Geographies." Part of themed intervention in Transactions of the Institute of British GeographersAccess>>


  • Jones, N. 2020. "Intervention: Corner Stores, Surveillance, and All Black Afterlives." In Antipode OnlineOpen Access>>


  • Jones, N. 2019. "Dying to Eat? Black Food Geographies of Slow Violence and Resilience." In ACME: An International Journal for Critical Geographies, 18 (5), 1076-99. Open Access>> 


  • Cotter, E, and Jones, N. 2019. "Review of Latino/Latinx Participants in Mindfulness-Based Intervention Research." Mindfulness, 11.


  • Thomas, KD and Jones, N. 2019. "Critical Reflexivity: Teaching About Race and Racism in the Advertising Classroom." Advertising & Society Quarterly, 20 (2).


  • Jones, N. 2018. "'It Tastes Like Heaven”: Critical Food Pedagogy with Black Youth in the Anthropocene." In Policy Futures in Education, 17(7), 905-923.  


Selected Exhibitions

Virtual Exhibit & Article: Dying to Eat? Black Food Geographies of Slow Violence and Resilience