Millions of people every year are forcibly displaced from their homes. Because of the extent of the phenomenon throughout the Americas today, migration is seen by politicians and lawmakers as a problem that needs regulation and control. This symposium examines human stories of displacement and the histories, relationships, and interests underlying the politicization of migration in the Americas.
Panelists will examine what makes migration unique in regions throughout Central, North and South America. They will provide historical, political and socio-cultural analysis to examine the contexts of immigration in these regions. In particular, we will focus on:
- The current refugee crisis in Central America, and Venezuela;
- The experiences of migrant women and children detained in U.S. detention centers;
- Migration and labor in the Midwest;
- What might U.S. immigration reform look like in the future?
Driven by violence, migration faces militarization and criminalization, which is accompanied by social dispossession of indigenous and poor communities, transnational capital involvement, and results in the shifting of sexual and gender relations.
New Steps, Old Routes
Migration in the Americas
Wednesdays, 4:00 to 5:30 pm CT
September 9: Gender, Sexuality, and Migration in the Americas
Welcome by LACIS Director Kata Beilin; Moderator, Associate Professor of Geography Jenna Loyd; Speakers, Eithne Luibheid, Sandibel Borges and Dario Valles.
Our first seminar, “Gender, Sexuality, and Migration in the Americas”, features panelists Sandibel Borges (Assistant Professor, Women’s and Gender Studies, Loyola Marymount University), Eithne Luibhéid (Professor and Director of Graduate Studies, Gender & Women’s Studies, University of Arizona) and Dario Valles (ACLS Emerging Voices Fellow, Columbia University, Dept. of Anthropology, Institute for Research on Women, Gender and Sexuality) in conversation with moderator Jenna Loyd, Associate Professor of Geography at UW-Madison.
Migration policy and infrastructures of enforcement—from visas to borders to detention facilities—are entangled with gendered and sexualized power relations. Feminist, queer, and trans scholarship have demonstrated that sex, gender, and sexuality are key arenas through which to understand state policy and practice, neocolonial patterns of labor migration, the politics of inclusion and exclusion, and much more. Contributors to this panel will share field-advancing scholarship on the centrality of gender and sexuality for people on the move, migration politics, and technologies of migration control. Their centering of feminist and queer analyses broadens understandings of the stakes and terms of contemporary debates over mobility, migration policy, and citizenship.
September 16: Women, Youth, and Violence in the Borderlands
Welcome by CLACS Director Natasha Borges Sugiyama (Associate Professor of Political Science, UW-Milwaukee)
Speaker/Moderator: Kristin Pitt (CLACS Fellow, Associate Professor, Women’s and Gender Studies and French, Italian & Comparative Literature, UW-Milwaukee), “An Impossible Story to Tell: Representing Feminicide in Desert Blood: The Juárez Murders”
Speaker: Cynthia Bejarano (Regents Professor, Interdisciplinary Studies, New Mexico State University) & Ma. Eugenia (Maru) Hernández Sánchez (Autonomous University of Ciudad Juárez), “The Migrant as Encounter: Constructing a Duality of ‘Other’ness along the U.S.-Mexico Border”
How do we represent the experiences of migration and living in the U.S.-Mexico borderlands? This panel examines competing discourses of migrants and the border and how these shape our ability to understand the region or characterize the experiences of migrants in art, academia, and conversation.
Pitt: This talk examines Alicia Gaspar de Alba’s 2005 detective novel, a prominent work of contemporary Chicana literature depicting the ongoing epidemic of feminicide in Ciudad Juárez, Mexico. Since its publication, Desert Blood has been celebrated for its use of what Gaspar de Alba has called the “anti-detective novel” to portray the successful rescue of a kidnapped and nearly-murdered teenager through the combined efforts of a queer and feminist community. However, as some scholars have also noted, the teenaged girl who is rescued is a U.S. citizen, setting up a problematic dynamic in the novel whereby U.S. citizens cross the border to rescue other U.S. citizens while unnamed and unrescued Mexican women and girls continue to die. I explore the ways in which generic requirements of both the detective novel and sentimental fiction drive Desert Blood toward this unsatisfactory conclusion, allowing U.S. citizens to benefit from the productive and reproductive capacities of Mexican women in ways similar to those that the novel condemns.
Bejarano/Hernández Sánchez: In the present talk, we will discuss disparate constructions (Sandoval, 2000) of the migrant imaginary (Schmidt-Camacho, 2007) at the U.S.-Mexico border. Popular competing constructions of migrants do not capture the urgent and emergent (Laddaga, 2006) migrant narratives that are surfacing at the border. Our guiding question for this talk is how do we address the dual construction of migrants in Mexico and in the U.S., while migration remains a constant series of encounters and experiences that enter and exit such dual constructs of (mis)conceptions? We situate our discussion accordingly between an academic analysis and an intimate space of pláticas (Flores-Carmona, Hamzeh, Bejarano, Hernandez Sanchez and El Ashmawi, 2018) that escape fixed constructions of knowledge regarding migrants and borders.
September 23: Panel on Central America
Refugees from the Central American states of Guatemala, El Salvador, and Honduras are currently leaving their countries in record number. Citing unprecedented levels of violence and precarity due to the presence of complex criminal organizations, an ineffective system of law and security, dim economic opportunities, and weak social welfare structures, refugees from these countries move north with the hope that there may be more stable and secure conditions elsewhere. Neighboring countries have witnessed asylum applications rise four-fold in the last few years, leading some asylum granting countries of the region—the United States in particular—to implement restrictive refugee and immigration protocol. Panelists on this program explore all aspects of this dynamic—from the contextual elements that force movement, to the experiences that refugees negotiate on their path, to the dehumanizing state responses. The goal of this panel is to give audience members a closer look at the shifting nature of migration in the region.
September 30: Crossing U.S. Borders
Rachel Ida Buff, Moderator (CLACS Fellow, Professor, History UW-Milwaukee), “A is for Asylum Seeker: Words for People on the Move”
Adam Goodman (Assistant Professor, Latin American & Latino Studies, University of Illinois at Chicago), “Deportation without Due Process: The American Way”
Nicole Ramos (Director, Border Rights Project, Al Otro Lado), “Sanctuary, Solidarity & the Rule of Law at the US-Mexico Border”
A group of second and third year law students along with the Director of the Immigrant Justice Clinic at the University of Wisconsin Law School will describe their volunteer work at the South Texas Family Residential Center in Dilley, Texas. They volunteered for a week with women and children in a detention center to help them prepare for Credible Fear Interviews, one of the first steps in the asylum process. They will describe the current state of detention and the new regulatory asylum bars that have almost closed our southern border to all asylum seekers.
October 14: Trends in Immigration Reform
Moderated by Michael Light, Associate Professor of Sociology and Chicano/Latino Studies at the University of Wisconsin-Madison.
Jens Manuel Krogstad, senior writer and editor at Pew Research Center and former reporter for such newspapers as The Des Moines Register and USA Today, will speak about whether Americans view immigration as a top issue for the 2020 presidential election, their views on Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) and, more broadly, how they view immigrants and their contributions to the country.
Luisa Feline Freier presents “Understanding the Venezuelan Displacement Crisis in times of COVID-19”
By mid 2020, over 5 million people had fled Venezuela due to its political, economic, and social crisis. Most chose Latin American destinations, given the elevated economic and administrative costs of migrating to destinations in the global North: 1.76 million Venezuelan citizens officially resided in Colombia, 830,000 in Peru, 455,000 in Chile, 363,000 in Ecuador, and 265,000 in Brazil. This talk gives a broad overview of Venezuelan displacement and policy reactions in Latin America both prior to, and in the context of the COVID-19 pandemic
Diana Rodriguez-Gomez presents “Universal Citizenship and the Quest for Educational Access among Colombian Refugees in Ecuador”
Under Ecuador’s constitutional notion of universal citizenship, youth are not required to have previous academic records to enter the equivalent of K-12 education, regardless of their migratory status. Despite these constitutional guarantees, refugee youth still have great difficulty enrolling in school in Ecuador. In this presentation, I analyze how access to school for Colombian refugee youth is shaped by the official and unofficial rules that regulate the formal education system.
Whether we consider migration to the U.S., within the US, or to alternative destinations in the Americas as result of barriers to entering the U.S., consideration of race is interwoven throughout. Blackness is both negotiated and navigated, as will be illustrated by the presentations on Haitian migrants to the U.S., Afro-Cubans in South Florida, and Senegalese migrants in Argentina.
Ermitte Saint Jacques, Moderator (Assistant Professor, African and African Diaspora Studies, UW-Milwaukee)
Monika Gosin, Associate Professor of Sociology at the College of William & Mary presents “Becoming (Afro) Cuban in Miami”
Jeffrey Kahn, Assistant Professor of Anthropology at the University of California, Davis presents “Haitian Migration and the History of the Present”
Ida Marie Savio Vammen, Post-Doctoral Fellow at the Danish Institute for International Studies presents “Contesting Borders: movement and friction in the lives of Senegalese migrants in Argentina”
November 4: South-South Migration
Anne Dressel, Moderator (CLACS Fellow, Assistant Professor, Nursing, UW-Milwaukee), “Attitudes toward immigrants and refugees in Ecuador”
Megan Sheehan (Assistant Professor, Sociology, College of Saint Benedict, Saint John’s University), “Urban Encounters: Migrant Settlement in Santiago, Chile”
Cristián Doña-Reveco (Associate Professor, Sociology & Anthropology, Office of Latino/Latin American Studies, University of Nebraska at Omaha), “Receiving Context and Policy Changes in the Transformation from Emigration Country to an Immigration Country. The case of Chile”
November 11: Immigration from LA to the Midwest
Immigration from Latin America to the Midwest has steadily increased over the last decade, and Wisconsin is no exception. Furthermore, Latin Americans, especially Mexicans, constitute the majority of new immigrant arrivals to the region. These developments are transforming the demographics of Midwestern cities and rural areas in ways that are familiar in traditional receiving states. The high birth rate among recent immigrants from Latin America accelerates this process. These population dynamics have been referred to as the “browning of America.” Many accounts homogenize distinct and unique populations from all over Latin America in ways that contribute to the narrative that Leo R. Chávez has termed, the “Latino Threat.” Our roundtable session challenges this narrative by examining the actual population dynamics behind it and exploring the complexities and challenges different Midwestern groups of Latin American descent face in the era of Trump.
November 18: Wisconsin/Milwaukee Ties
This webinar will focus on individual, day-to-day lives and work. By closing the series in this way, we are bringing the many migration issues discussed throughout the fall to reflect more fully on people’s stories and lived experiences.
Rachel Bloom-Pojar (CLACS Fellow and Associate Professor of English at UW-Milwaukee), “Navigating Rhetorics of Reproductive Justice with Promotores de Salud”
This talk will feature stories about navigating rhetorics reproductive justice with promotores de salud (community health promoters) who work in Milwaukee and across Wisconsin. Originally from various countries in Central and South America, these promotores de salud draw from their lived experiences with migration and communicative expertise to cultivate confianza (trust/confidence) when discussing reproductive and sexual health. They also navigate different aspects of reproductive justice with the varied institutional goals and funding constraints they face with their work in education and advocacy.
Jesús Salas (activist, ShopTalk speaker for the Wisconsin Humanities Council’s Working Lives Project, and former member of the University of Wisconsin System Board of Regents)
Margarita García-Rojas (LACUSL alumna, Graduate student, Department of History, University of Illinois)
LACIS Organizational Committee: Janel Anderson, Erin Barbato, Lesley Bartlett, Kata Beilin (Director), Laura Bunn, Armando Ibarra, Carolyn Kallenborn, Michael Light, Jenna Loyd, Benjamin Marquez, Sara McKinnon, Jenna Nobles, Anju Reejhsinghani, Sarah Ripp, Hernando Rojas, Alberto Vargas, Emmerich Mager
CLACS Organizational Committee: Julie Kline, Natasha Borges Sugiyama, Rachel Bloom-Pojar, Rachel Buff, Anne Dressel, Kristin Pitt, Chia Vang
More details coming soon!
Sandibel Borges is currently a postdoctoral fellow in the Center for Mexican American Studies at the University of Texas at Austin. She received her Ph.D. in Feminist Studies from the University of California, Santa Barbara and was faculty in the Women’s, Gender, and Sexuality Studies Program at the University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire from 2017 to 2019. Her work investigates how heteronormativity, white supremacy, and exploitation are naturalized and institutionalized within migration processes, and their impact on Latinx LGBTQ migrants in Los Angeles, California and Mexico City, Mexico. Using oral histories and ethnography, Sandibel then examines the concepts of hope, survival, home, and queer family and friendship in the everyday lives of her participants/narrators.
Dr. Borges’s work has appeared in Women’s Studies Quarterly, the Journal of Lesbian Studies, Chicana/Latina Studies: The Journal of Mujeres Activas en Letras y Cambio Social, and Diálogo.
Noelle Brigden, Ph.D. (Cornell 2013) is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Political Science at Marquette University, where she teaches courses on international relations, human security, international migration, and politics of street gangs. She was a 2018-2018 Visiting Research Fellow at the Princeton Institute for International and Regional Studies, and held a 2013-2014 postdoctoral fellowship at the Watson Institute for International Studies. Her current project compares and contrasts the social imagination of multiple borders, including boundaries imposed by nation-states, street gangs and gated communities, in urban El Salvador, and their implications for citizenship.
Dr. Alfredo Carlos was born in Jerez, Zacatecas, Mexico and grew up in the Harbor Area of Los Angeles in a working-class immigrant community. As immigrants he and his family, like many other immigrants and working people lived in a barrio, experiencing life as people who were working poor. This experience of living in poverty has come to influence and to a large extent define his work as a scholar, an activist, a mentor and a father. He is a proud product of California public school systems. He holds a Ph.D. in Political Science from the University of California, Irvine where he specialized in the fields of Political Economy, Political theory, and American Racial and Urban Politics. He earned his M.A. in Political Science from California State University, Long Beach with a focus in Comparative Politics and International Relations and his B.A. is in History and Chicano Studies from the University of California, Santa Barbara. Dr. Carlos is currently a Faculty member in Political Science and Chicano and Latino Studies at California State University, Long Beach. He is also the Executive Director of the Foundation for Economic Democracy. His articles have appeared in Latin American Perspectives and Ethnicities. He is the co-author of The Latino Question (Pluto, 2018). His research and teaching interests are in Latino political economy, economic democracy, labor, inequality, immigration, race/ethnicity, and social movements in the U.S. and Mexico/Latin America.
Lauren Heidbrink is a cultural anthropologist who focuses on the anthropology of childhood and migration in Central America. Her research and teaching interests include childhood and youth, transnational migration, performance and identity, engaged methodologies, and Central America. Her manuscript, Migrant Youth, Transnational Families, and the State: Care and Contested Interests (University of Pennsylvania Press, 2014), examines the experiences of migrant children in U.S. federal facilities for unaccompanied children and following release. With support of the National Science Foundation and the American Council of Learned Societies, her forthcoming manuscript Migranthood: Youth in a New Era of Deportation (Stanford University Press, 2020) examines the impacts of the securitization of development on indigenous Guatemalan youth (Mam and K’iche’) following deportation from the U.S. and Mexico. Dr. Heidbrink is co-founder and editor of Youth Circulations, a curated digital exhibit tracing the real and imagined circulations of global youth.
Jens Manuel Krogstad
Jens Manuel Krogstad is a senior writer and editor at Pew Research Center. He has authored or edited hundreds of studies on topics that include global migration, Latino public opinion, Hispanic demographic trends and U.S. border enforcement. Prior to joining Pew Research Center, Krogstad spent nine years as a reporter at newspapers such as The Des Moines Register and USA Today. He is a graduate of the University of Minnesota. Krogstad regularly talks with the media about the Center’s findings in both English and Spanish.
Eithne Luibhéid is Professor of Gender and Women’s Studies at the University of Arizona (UA). She served as the Director of the Institute for LGBT Studies at UA from 2007-2011. She holds a PhD in Ethnic Studies from the University of California, Berkeley, and her research focuses on the connections among queer lives, state immigration controls, and justice struggles. She has been an invited speaker at universities including Harvard, Oxford, the Open University, the University of Amsterdam, and the National University of Singapore.
Luibhéid’s current book manuscript, ‘Why Don’t They Just Get in Line?’ Immigration, Deportability, and Queer Intimacies, explores how deportability is being extended and resisted through intimate ties between undocumented migrants and U.S. citizens. With Karma Chávez, she is co-editing Queer Migrations 2: Illegalization, Detention and Deportation (University of Illinois Press, forthcoming). She is also editing a special issue of the Journal of Lesbian Studies on “Lives That Resist Telling: Migrant and Refugee Lesbians.” Luibhéid participates in a research collaboration, “Managing Citizenship, Security, and Rights,” organized by Dr. Anne Marie D’Aoust at the Université de Québec in Montreal, Canada, and serves as the Social Sciences Review editor for the journal GLQ.
Professor of English, University of Wisconsin Oshkosh
UWM CLACS Regional Faculty Associate & UW Madison CHE Community Associate
Author of Every Day We Live Is the Future: Surviving in a City of Disasters (U of Texas Press, 2017)
Wendy Vogt, PhD
Department of Anthropology
Indiana University-Purdue University Indianapolis
CLACS Fellow, Professor, History UW-Milwaukee; “A is for Asylum Seeker: Words for People on the Move”
Assistant Professor, Latin American & Latino Studies, University of Illinois at Chicago; “Deportation without Due Process: The American Way”
Refugee Program Director, Al Otro Lado
Michael T. Light is an Associate Professor of Sociology and Chicano/Latino Studies at the University of Wisconsin-Madison. He is also affiliated with the Institute for Research on Poverty, the Center for Demography and Ecology, the LaFollette School of Public Affairs, the Center for Law, Society & Justice, the Center for German and European Studies, the Tommy G. Thompson Center on Public Leadership, the Global Legal Studies Center and has been a visiting researcher at the Max Planck Institute for Foreign and International Criminal Law in Freiburg, Germany.
Aissa Olivarez is the Managing Attorney at the Community Immigration Law Center (CILC). She joined CILC in August 2017 and as a part of the organization provides deportation defense. Aissa has represented many clients in removal and bond proceedings, and appeals.
Prior to joining CILC, Aissa was a Staff Attorney at the Pro Bono Asylum Representation Children’s Project (ProBAR), where she represented unaccompanied minor children who were placed in removal proceedings by the Department of Homeland Security in Harlingen, Texas. During law school, Aissa participated in the Immigrant Justice Clinic and the Defenders Project at the University of Wisconsin Law School. In September 2018, Aissa was awarded the Belle Case LaFollette Award by the Wisconsin Law Foundation for her work with under-served communities.
An Associate Professor with the School for Workers, Armando Ibarra holds a BA in Sociology and Spanish, as well as a Master’s in Public Administration, and a PhD in Political Science from the University of California, Irvine. Armando joined the School for Workers faculty in January 2011. Dr. Ibarra has extensive and diverse teaching, research and organizing experience. His research and fields of specialization are Chicano/a Latino/a working communities, adult education on issues of diversity in the workplace, international labor migration, leadership development, organizing workplaces, and applied research. He has taught for the CLS Program since 2011 and held the Director position since 2018. For more information, see his website.
Erin M. Barbato is the Director of the Immigrant Justice Clinic at the University of Wisconsin Law School. She teaches second and third year law students to represent individuals in removal proceedings and with humanitarian-based immigration relief. Previously, Erin was founding member of Barbato Immigration law and the Executive Director of, and Staff Attorney at the Community Immigration Law Center (CILC). Prior to joining CILC, Erin managed a boutique immigration law firm’s Madison office, and was as a staff attorney with Catholic Charities, Legal Services for Immigrants.
Prior to attending law school, Erin volunteered as a teacher at El Centro del Muchacho Trabajador, a non-profit organization in Quito, Ecuador. While in Quito, she worked with families and recently resettled refugee families living at or below the poverty line.
Juan Jose Fonseca Angel: Third Year Law Student
Angela O’Brien: Associate Attorney at Quarles & Brady
Julia Jagow: Associate Attorney at Boardman and Clark
Perla Rubio Terrones: Clinical Instructor at the Immigrant Justice Clinic at UW Law School
Margaret Morris: Third Year Law Student
Nancy Cruz: Associate Attorney at Michael Best
Naomi Smith: Third Year Law Student
Ramuel Figueroa: Third Year Law Student
UW-Madison Sociology PhD Student
Luisa Feline Freier
Assistant Professor of Social and Political Sciences at the Universidad del Pacífico (Peru). She holds a Ph.D. in Political Science from the London School of Economics and Political Science (LSE). Her research focuses on immigration and refugee policies in Latin America and South-South migration from countries in Africa, Asia, and the Caribbean. Her work has been published by different academic journals, including the International Migration Review (IMR), and she co-edited a first volume on migration policies in Latin America “A Liberal Tide? Immigration and Asylum Law and Policy in Latin America” (2015). She has provided advice to various international institutions and organizations such as the Naumann Foundation for Freedom, the International Organization for Migration (IOM) and the European Union (EU).
Diana Rodríguez-Gómez is an assistant professor in the Department of Educational Policy Studies at the University of Wisconsin, Madison. Her research agenda engages with the fields of anthropology of the state, refugee studies, education in emergencies, and comparative and international education to examine the internal workings of educational systems concerning peace-building efforts. With a regional focus on Latin America, through qualitative and ethnographic methodologies, she explores the everyday experiences of education stakeholders.
Lesley Bartlett is a Professor in Educational Policy Studies. She is also affiliated with Anthropology, Curriculum and Instruction, and Latin American, Caribbean, and Iberian Studies (LACIS). An anthropologist by training who works in the field of International and Comparative Education, Professor Bartlett does research in literacy studies (including multilingual literacies), migration, and educator professional development. In 2019, Professor Bartlett was named Faculty Director of the Institute for Regional and International Studies at University of Wisconsin-Madison. She currently co-edits the Anthropology and Education Quarterly with her colleague, Professor Stacey Lee.
Associate Professor of Sociology at the College of William & Mary
Jeffrey Kahn is a sociocultural anthropologist and legal scholar with an interest in issues of migration, mobility, border policing, maritime worlds, sovereignty, law, and ritual economies. His research on these topics has focused geographically on Haiti, the Guantánamo Naval Base, the United States, and the Republic of Bénin. Prior to joining the Anthropology Department at UC Davis, Professor Kahn was an Academy Scholar at the Harvard Academy for International and Area Studies, an Associate Research Scholar in Law/Robina Foundation International Human Rights Fellow at Yale Law School, and a law clerk to the Hon. Judith W. Rogers of the United States Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit. Professor Kahn’s work has been funded by the National Science Foundation, the Fulbright program, and the American Society for Legal History. He is currently a Stephen M. Kellen Term Member of the Council on Foreign Relations.
Post-Doctoral Fellow at the Danish Institute for International Studies
Assistant Professor of African and African Diaspora Studies at UW-Milwaukee
Megan Sheehan received her PhD in Anthropology from the University of Arizona. She comes to CSB/SJU from Lehigh University where she held a Postdoctoral Research Fellowship in Latin American Studies. Megan’s research examines the recent influx of Latin American migrants to Chile, exploring how migration impacts and changes urban areas. She has conducted extensive fieldwork in Chile, the Arizona – Sonora border region, and northern Arizona. Her research and teaching interests include: migration, urbanization, food studies, ethnographic research methods, and applied anthropology.
Cristián Doña-Reveco is the Director of the Office of Latino and Latin American Studies (OLLAS) and Associate Professor of Sociology in the Department of Sociology & Anthropology at the University of Nebraska Omaha. He is also faculty affiliate with UNO’s Goldstein Center for Human Rights. Originally from Chile, he earned a Bachelor’s and professional degree in Sociology from Universidad de Chile, an MA in Political Sciences with a concentration in International Relations from Pontificia Universidad Católica de Chile, and an MA in Sociology and a PhD in Sociology and History both from Michigan State University (2012). Before coming to UNO in 2015, Dr. Doña-Reveco spent two years in Santiago, Chile doing field research on North-South Migration and teaching at Universidad Diego Portales and Universidad Alberto Hurtado. He has also worked as a consultant for the International Organization for Migration and for the Population Division of United Nations’ Economic Commission for Latin America and the Caribbean.
Anne is an Assistant Professor, who serves as Director of the Center for Global Health Equity. She also serves as Project Director of the Westlawn Partnership for a Healthier Environment.
Almita Miranda is an interdisciplinary cultural anthropologist with research interests in race/ethnicity, gender, political economy, (im)migration, citizenship, transnationalism, Latinx families and grassroots organizing in the U.S. and Mexico. She received her Ph.D. from Northwestern University in 2017 and recently completed a postdoctoral fellowship at Center for the Study of Race and Ethnicity in America and the Watson Institute for International and Public Affairs at Brown University. Her research focuses on the ways Mexican mixed-status families navigate the legal and social contraints they face. Almita’s new courses in Geography include Geog 475: Transnational Latinx Communities: Roots & Migration and U.S.-Mexico Borderlands. She has taught courses including Critical Latinx Ethnography at Northwestern University, Dartmouth College, and Brown University.
Alfredo Carlos is a Faculty member in the departments of Political Science and Chicano and Latino Studies at California State University, Long Beach. His interests revolve around understanding the nature of inequality in the U.S. and through praxis, organizing alternative economies that empower working communities, especially those of color. His particular specialization is in political economy with a focus in economic democracy, which consists in part of worker ownership, workplace and community democracy. He is also the founder and director for the Long Beach based Foundation for Economic Democracy that seeks to work towards a Long Beach and Los Angeles harbor area that promotes the expansion of an economy that is rooted in people over profits. The Foundation’s mission is to create democratically governed community projects and worker owned businesses where workers, their families and their communities can all thrive and live with dignity. He dedicates all of his work in all of its aspects to improving the quality of life for working people, people of color and developing other young critical scholars who challenge the systems and structures that create misery in our society for working people. He is a proud product of California public school systems.
Marla Ramírez is a historian of the U.S.-Mexico borderlands with specialization in oral history, Mexican repatriation, social and legal histories of Mexican migrations, and gendered immigration experiences. She completed a doctoral degree at the University of California, Santa Barbara in Chicana and Chicano Studies and an emphasis in Feminist Studies. Her current book project, “Contested Illegality: Mexican Repatriation, Banishment, and Prolonged Consequences Across Three Generations,” examines the history of citizenship and naturalization laws and immigration policies of the Great Depression era, focusing on the unconstitutional banishment of US-citizens of Mexican descent that tore apart thousands of families across the US-Mexico border. Her research has been supported by the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, the Mahindra Humanities Center at Harvard, the San Francisco State University’s Development for Research and Creativity Grant, the Ford Foundation, and the University of California’s Fletcher Jones Fellowship. For more information, see her faculty website.
José G. Villagrán, Ph.D.
Lecturer, Chican@ & Latin@ Studies, UW-Madison
The Conference on Migration: Latin America and the U.S. is sponsored by the Latin American Caribbean and Iberian Studies Program and the Center for Latin American and Caribbean Studies.
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