CSRC Fellows & Visiting Scholars 2007-2008

Institute of American Cultures Postdoctoral Fellow

Ellie Hernandez, Assistant Professor of Women’s Studies, UC Santa Barbara
Hernandez received her Ph.D. from UC Berkeley in English Literature. She will be completing work on her book length manuscript entitled “Postnationalism: Nationalist Discontent in Chicana/o Culture.” This is an interdisciplinary project that draws on archival historical research, media, film, anthropology (cultural studies), as well as gender and sexuality as the preferred method and direction of analysis. She has secured an advance contract with the University of Texas Press and her time at UCLA will facilitate the completion of the project.

Postdoctoral Fellows & Visiting Scholars

Deborah Vargas, Ford Foundation Postdoctoral Fellow
Vargas is an assistant professor in Chicano/Latino Studies at UC Irvine. She received her Ph.D. from UC Santa Cruz in Sociology with an emphasis in Feminist Studies. Professor Vargas’ research focuses on Chicana/o identity—particularly the intersection of gender, ethnicity, sexuality, and region (predominantly South Texas)—and how these are expressed through popular culture. In her dissertation, “Las Tracaleras: Texas-Mexican Women, Music, and Place,” Vargas examined the lives of Texas-Mexican women who made important yet unrecognized contributions through the public culture of music. Her project is to complete revisions on her book manuscript entitled Decolonial Divas, and to submit the book for publication to a scholarly press. Decolonial Divas will be the first interdisciplinary scholarly analysis of Chicana/Mexican-American women singers to pay critical attention to the ways in which popular music stages discourses of citizenship, nationalism, and family through non-normative constructions of sexual agency, gender and desire.
Dr. Vargas will draw on the music archives of UCLA’s Chicano Studies Research Center under the guidance of Professor Chon Noriega and her completion of the project will strengthen her academic record at UCI.
David G. Garcia, Lecturer, Cesar E. Chavez Department of Chicana/o Studies, UCLA
Garcia received his Ph.D. from UCLA in History. As a Chicano Studies Research Center Visiting Scholar, he plans to conduct new research that extends on his dissertation, chronicling the twenty-three year evolution of Chicano-Latino theater trio, Culture Clash. Building on his oral histories of Culture Clash members and content analysis of four plays, he will focus on the group’s ethnographic, site-specific plays since 1994 (Radio Mambo, 1994; Bordertown, 1998; Nuyorican Stories, 1999; Mission Magic Mystery Tour, 2001; Anthems, 2002; Chavez Ravine, 2003). These six plays and the corresponding anthology show Culture Clash in AmeriCCa calls for further inquiry to analyze the ways cultural material provides human testimony of historical actions. Culture Clash’s ethnographic playwriting process of recovering and recounting urban community histories reveals issues of race, gender, ethnicity, sexuality, immigration and social class rarely included in mainstream theater venues or historical texts. These artistic expressions are linked to colonial and postcolonial histories, and grounded in the urgency of contemporary sociopolitical contexts.
Nao Bustamante, Associate Professor of New Media and Live Art, Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute
Bustamante will be taking a sabbatical leave and has received a Lambent Fellowship for the Arts to support her research while a visiting scholar at UCLA. She will be working on a new video project, Earth People 2507, a project that will provide for the preservation of Bustamante’s performance and video works for a “time capsule” that will be open in 500 years.
Luis Ortiz-Franco, Professor, Department of Mathmatics and Computer Science, Chapman University.
As a Visiting Scholar at the research center during 2007-08, from February 2008 through May 2008, Dr. Ortiz-Franco will implement a research plan, including:
  • Conducting archival research of the empirical literature (experimental and quasi-experimental studies) on the teaching and learning of mathematics among Chicano/Latino K-12 students in the U.S. in the 20th century.
  • Conducting archival research on mathematics education in California before 1848.
Alvaro Ochoa-Serrano, Professor of History, El Colegio de Michoacan
Ochoa-Serrano received his Ph.D. from UCLA. During his stay as a Visiting Scholar at the research center Ochoa-Serrano will implement a project, A Mexican Tradition in the United States: Mariache music and musicians 1910-1960. The central focus of the research is Mexican popular music and the first mariachi recordings. Ochoa-Serrano has already undertaken a survey of several musical ensembles (orquestas típicas, duos, and mariacheros) from the period of 1906 to 1960 and presented the findings in a book (Mitote, Fandango y Mariacheros, 1994, 2000 and 2005) and in several articles (“El Mariache resuena: tradicion e identidad del occidente mexicano en California”. 2002. Aztlan, Volume 27, Number Two; “María cumbe che: Mestizo charros, and Mariacheros”. 2003. Musical Cultures of Latin America: Global Effects, Past and Present. Editor Steven Loza. Selected Reports in Ethnomusicology, Volume XI). The research has several key objectives: visiting and consulting the Frontera Web Page at the Chicano Studies Research Center, the Music Library and the Ethnomusicology Archive located in the University of California at Los Angeles; conducting interviews with singer Maria Padilla (Padilla Sisters); doing field work at the Mercadito and at the Mariachi Plaza of Boyle Heights to interview mariachi performers and informants.
Angela Ixkic Duarte Bastian, Postdoctoral Fellow, Centro de Investigaciones y Estudios Superiores en Antropologia Social (CIESAS).
Duarte Bastian received a UC MEXUS postdoctoral grant to conduct research at UCLA in collaboration with Professor Maylei Blackwell. During her stay at the Chicano Studies Research Center she will re-write her dissertation for publication. Her work adds to research on the construction of democracy in Mexico, emphasizing the analysis of the intersection points between culture, politics and identities. The democratic transition in Latin America is usually studied parting from the electoral issues; its links with the cultural and social transformations are rarely studied. In dialogue with political and gender anthropology, with studies about social movements and with feminist theory, Dr. Duarte proposes to analyze the contributions of the indigenous movement and organized indigenous women to the young Mexican democracy, and their efforts to reorient the meanings and limitations of the political system.

Predoctoral/Graduate Fellows and Associates

Institute of American Cultures-Chicano Studies Predoctoral/Graduate Fellow
Lauryn Camille Salazar, PhD candidate, UCLA Department of Ethnomusicology
In addition to being a musician and conducting research on Mariachi music, Ms. Salazar has been a class reader and teaching assistant over five years for various courses, including Music of Mexico, Music of Latin America, The Development of Jazz, Chicano/Latino Music in the United States, and World Music Theory. She brings a wide breadth of research experience relevant to her dissertation topic. This is all fundamental to her goal of teaching at the college level and continuing to conduct research on mariachi music.
Salazar is investigating mariachi programs in three southwestern states that are offered to elementary, high school and college students who would not normally be exposed to music. These programs have value as a retention tool and a means of keeping at-risk and potential drop-out students in school. Through field research at various sites, she is constructing a history of mariachi music in the United States, and also providing a more complete study of the current status of academic programs in California and the Southwest. In addition, she has done extensive archival research in museums and relevant collections. Salazar has completed both archival and field-based research and will be writing dissertation chapters in 2007-08. Salazar’s work is strongly relevant to the goals and aims of the Chicano Studies Research Center and the Institute of American Cultures. Her research relates to the research conducted by the previous CSRC Director, Professor Guillermo Hernandez, and will add to the ongoing efforts of the Frontera Music collection, the largest public collection of Spanish-language music at any university.

UCCLR Latino Policy Studies (SCR-43) Associates

For more information on this program, click here.
Jose Luis Santos, Professor, UCLA Graduate School of Education
Project: "The Impact of Tuition Discounting Policies on Chicana/o Students in California"
Lindsay Perez Huber, PhD candidate, UCLA Graduate School of Education
Project: "Suenos Indocumentados: The Educational Experiences of Undocumented Chicanas in California Higher Education"