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A Chilean-Italian-American sociocultural anthropologist, whose life's work focused on Mexico, passed away on April 19, 2013 at the age of 84 after battling a lengthy illness. A Professor of Cultural Anthropology at the University of Pittsburgh for nearly a half a century, Dr. Nutini was passionate about his work, teaching and prolific in his writing, including 16 comprehensive books written in both Spanish and English. "Hugo leaves behind an amazing scholarly legacy of great breadth and theoretical sophistication...
examining just about every layer of Mexican society." * Nutini received his first bachelor's degree at the age of 18 (in Civil Engineering) from the Chilean Naval Academy. An accomplished runner, he was a member of Chile's Track Team, winning medals at international competitions. Hugo attended UCLA to study philosophy, where he continued to excel in track and field while earning a 2nd B.A. (1955) before serving in the US Armed Forces in the Far East, and then an MA (1958). He had completed half of his doctoral dissertation when he switched disciplines to anthropology, receiving his Ph.D. in Anthropology from UCLA in 1962. Nutini joined the Center for Latin American Studies and the University of Pittsburgh's Anthropology Department in 1963, where he taught for 50 years, making annual trips to complete fieldwork in the Tlaxaca region of Mexico. A mentor and steadfast friend to colleagues and students too numerous to mention, Nutini was most generous with his wealth of knowledge and was glad to teach anyone who asked to learn. A former student, Roland Armando Alum writes, "Hugo's life history demonstrates a contagious passion for mentoring, meticulous scholarship, and the Mexican people whose society he has been examining for 54 years." A devoted husband, Nutini is survived by his wife of 44 years, Jean Forbes Nutini; his sons, Jean-Pierre (Lisa), Christian (Marta) and Alexis (Michelle); his grandchildren, Christian (Brandi), Aleksander, Kai and Desi; and his great-grandchildren Nadia, Ethan, Christian and Monique (Rouleau). A memorial service was held in Fortin de las Flores, Veracruz, Mexico on April 20, 2013, where Dr. Nutini spent his last days. A memorial will be held in Pittsburgh, with a date to be determined later. Cards and letters of condolence may be mailed to: 1205 Shady Avenue, Pittsburgh, PA 15232. *Special thanks to Rolando Armando Alum and Doren L. Slade for their contributions to this obituary.
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Published in Pittsburgh Post-Gazette on Apr. 23, 2013
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