Daniella Mascarenhas

2024 Unstoppable Voters Faculty Fellow Daniella Mascarenhas

Daniella Mascarenhas (she/they) has her PhD in political science and currently serves as an assistant professor of political science at Xavier University of Louisiana where she teaches courses on political theory and public law. Her scholarly work addresses questions of freedom within political theory especially applied to state punishment and incarceration. She has notably focused on the civic republic tradition and has applied this ancient theory of freedom to modern problems of incarceration, focusing on the role of the private sector in incarceration. Her work also examines the role of civic engagement in normative theories of freedom. Currently she is working on a civic examination of the Constitution especially during the civil rights era in the United States. Her work has appeared in the Journal of Political Science Education and Academia Letters. She is especially enthusiastic about being an Unstoppable Voters 2024 Faculty Fellow because civic engagement is professionally and personally important to Daniella. She has previously organized several events related to civic engagement including a symposium on Morality and the Law hosted by the Institute for Humane Studies, a campus visit from former Congresspeople funded by the Stennis Center for Public Service, and an independently organized Constitution Day campaign for Xavier University of Louisiana. Daniella looks forward to collaborating with the Center for Artistic Activism and contributing towards a more civically engagement community in the New Orleans area. When not in the classroom or working on research, Daniella enjoys competitive powerlifting and playing with her two cats Lu and Julien. She also enjoys learning how to work with clay from her husband Ronald Tolie who is a an artist and ceramics instructor in the New Orleans area.

Daniella Mascarenhas. Photo by Ronald Tolie.
Daniella throwing on the potter’s wheel under her husband’s expert instruction. Photo by Ronald Tolie.

About Xavier University of Louisiana

Established in 1925, Xavier University of Louisiana is a private, historically black, Catholic university in New Orleans, Louisiana. The ultimate purpose of the University is to contribute to the promotion of a more just and humane society by preparing its students to assume roles of leadership and service in a global society. This preparation takes place in a diverse learning and teaching environment that incorporates all relevant educational means, including research and community service.

Faculty Fellowship Focus

Introduction to American Government: This class introduces scholars to issues of American politics, including the Constitution, federalism, interest groups, political parties and elections, presidency, congress, courts, the Bill of Rights, and political equality.

“I’m looking forward to collaborating with the Center for Artistic Activism and with my other Fellowship participants to create relevant and interdisciplinary avenues for civic engagement at this critical moment in democratic politics.”

– Daniella Mascarenhas, Assistant Professor of Political Science, Xavier University of Louisiana