The Newberry Seminar in Borderlands and Latino Studies
Co-sponsored by Northwestern University’s Program in Latina and Latino Studies, the Institute for Latino Studies at the University of Notre Dame, the Center for Latino Research at DePaul University, and the Katz Center for Mexican Studies at the University of Chicago
Friday, September 24, 3:00 - 5:00PM
Commentator: Raúl Coronado, University of Chicago
All papers are pre-circulated electronically to those who plan to attend the seminar in person. For a copy of the paper, e-mail Heather Radke at firstname.lastname@example.org,or call (312) 255-3524.
Post-Nationalist Topographies: Critical Nostalgia and Queer Diasporic Subjects in Chicana Cultural Production
Micaela Diáz-Sánchez, Northwestern University
In this paper I conceptualize “critical nostalgia” in Cherríe Moraga’s “The Hungry Woman: A Mexican Medea” and Adelina Anthony’s “Mastering Sex and Tortillas.” Employing Moraga’s epic play and Anthony’s one-woman performance piece as discursive springboards, I explore the policing of gender and sexuality in narratives of Chicana/o nationalism and citizenship. Discussing the hegemonic pairing of heteronormativity and patriotism in post 9-11 United States I argue that the spaces crafted in both narratives function as sites for queer diasporic subjects to create and reconfigure “home.”
Chicago is the Homeland: Representations of Place, Race, and Labor in Ana Castillo's Sapogonia and Peel My Love Like an Onion
Olga Herrara, University of St. Thomas
This paper is part of a larger project in which I examine the ways in which canonical literary representations of Chicago, labor, and immigration have constructed a mythology of opportunity, and complicate this construction with Chicago Mexican narratives of racialization, transnational place, and citizenship. In “Chicago is the Homeland,” I argue that Ana Castillo’s Sapogonia and Peel My Love Like an Onion interrogate tropes of the racialized laboring body and the migrant worker in exile by imagining protagonists that use their bodies for the creation of art and in their transnational lives, are paradoxically always already at home.
Illegals and Criminals: Categorical Inequality in a Post-Racial Era
Ruth Gomberg-Muñoz, University of Illinois at Chicago
In the United States, increasingly punitive and enforcement-oriented immigration policies have been legitimized by a rhetoric of criminality that stigmatizes Latino/a immigrant workers and intensifies their exploitation. In this paper, I draw on my ethnographic research with undocumented immigrants in the Chicago area to explore the implications of “illegalization” of large segments of the Latino/a immigrant population. In particular, I review the political production of “illegal aliens” and examine how criminalizing rhetoric is interpreted, reproduced, and resisted in the lives of undocumented immigrants in Chicago.
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