Erin Pineda teaches courses in the history of political thought, democratic theory, race and politics, social movements and American political thought. Her research interests include the politics of protest and social movements, Black political thought, race and politics, radical democracy and 20th-century American political development. Her book Seeing Like an Activist: Civil Disobedience and the Civil Rights Movement (Oxford University Press 2021) shows how civil rights activists, in concert with anticolonial movements across the globe, turned to civil disobedience as a practice of decolonization in order to emancipate themselves and others, and in the process transform the racial order.
Pineda received her doctorate in political science from Yale University and her bachelor's degree from Barnard College. Her work has appeared in Contemporary Political Theory, European Journal of Political Thought, and History of the Present, along with the Boston Reviewand the London Review of Books blog. Prior to coming to Smith College in the fall of 2017, she was Provost's Postdoctoral Scholar in Political Science at the University of Chicago, and a faculty affiliate of the Center for the Study of Race, Politics and Culture.