UT’s Digital Scholarship in the Americas series

On Friday, November 2, 2018, Recovery’s CLIR-Mellon Postdoctoral Fellow, Dr. Lorena Gauthereau will be presenting “(Digital) Methodology of the Oppressed: Decolonial Theory and US Latina/o Digital Humanities” at the University of Texas at Austin. The lecture is sponsored by LLILAS Benson Latin American Studies and Collections and the Center for Mexican American Studies. It will take place from 12:00-1:30 pm at the Benson Library. Registration is required before 5:00 pm November 1st at decolonial_theory_latina_dh.eventbrite.com.

In this talk, Dr. Gauthereau draws on Chela Sandoval, Cherríe Moraga, and Emma Pérez to discuss the implications and applications of Chicana decolonial theory and affect theory for the Digital Humanities and minority collections. By focusing on the emerging US Latina/o Digital Humanities initiative at Recovering the US Hispanic Literary Heritage, she examines the structural colonial problems encountered in US Latina/o DH and the stakes of digital decolonial praxis.

UT2

A Discussion on the US Immigration Crisis

Join Recovering the US Hispanic Literary Heritage’s graduate student research assistant, Sylvia Fernández, and her fellow graduate student, Maira E. Álvarez, on Thursday, Oct. 18, 2018 for a discussion on US immigration policy, family separation, and the collaborative digital project, Torn Apart/Separados. This event is sponsored by our colleagues at the UH Center for Mexican American Studies (CMAS).

When: Thursday, October 18, 2018

Where: Agnes Hall 322

Time: 1:00pm

TornApartFlyer

Sylvia Fernández: is a Ph.D. Candidate in Hispanic Studies at the University of Houston and a Research Fellow with Recovering the US Hispanic Literary Heritage. Her research interests include U.S. Latina/o Literature with a focus on U.S.-Mexico Border, Women’s, Gender and Sexualities Studies, Archives and Digital Humanities. She is co-creator of Borderlands Archives Cartography.

Maira Álvarez: is a Ph.D. Candidate and currently a Research Assistant for the Center for Mexican American Studies at the University of Houston. Her research interests include the study of U.S. Latino, U.S.-Mexico Border, and Latin American Literature as well as Women’s Studies, Latinx Art and Digital Humanities. She is co-creator of Borderlands Archives Cartography.

Borderlands of Southern Colorado

El Pueblo History Museum in Colorado is kicking off their Fall Borderlands Lecture Series today, October 4, 2018. Among the 2018 Fall line up is Recovering the US Hispanic Literary Heritage Graduate Research Assistant and University of Houston Hispanic Studies doctoral candidate, Sylvia Fernández. She will be presenting “Understanding US-Mexico Borderlands: Newspapers Mapping Geographical Boundaries” with her colleague, Maira Álvarez, on Wednesday, November 7, 2018 at 6:00 pm.

Abstract: “Understanding US-Mexico Borderlands: Newspapers Mapping Geographical Boundaries,” Maira Álvarez and Sylvia Fernández (University of Houston) Abstract cross-posted from El Pueblo History Museum website (See original page here.)

National discourses about the border continue to generalize, stereotype and invisibilize the history of communities along the region. But many are unaware that borderland identities have emerged throughout history as a result of the loss of territory, immigrations, exile and deterritorialization. Borderlands Archives Cartography was created to visualize, document and analyze the junction of several cultures and the diverse histories of borderlands “to embrace our past and honor the multiple experiences of our communities.” The project uses a digital map to display a U.S.-Mexico border cartography that records the geographic locations of 19th- and mid-20th-century periodicals in order to conceptualize this region before and after the current division line. BAC’s objective is to understand the complexity of borderlands history, identities and cultures to resist the continuing discourses against this extensive region.

COStateUni

El Pueblo History Museum is located in Pueblo, Colorado. For more information, visit: https://www.historycolorado.org/el-pueblo-history-museum

Sylvia Fernández: is a Ph.D. Candidate in Hispanic Studies at the University of Houston and a Research Fellow with Recovering the US Hispanic Literary Heritage. Her research interests include U.S. Latina/o Literature with a focus on U.S.-Mexico Border, Women’s, Gender and Sexualities Studies, Archives and Digital Humanities. She is co-creator of Borderlands Archives Cartography.

Maira Álvarez: is a Ph.D. Candidate and currently a Research Assistant for the Center for Mexican American Studies at the University of Houston. Her research interests include the study of U.S. Latino, U.S.-Mexico Border, and Latin American Literature as well as Women’s Studies, Latinx Art and Digital Humanities. She is co-creator of Borderlands Archives Cartography.

MITH’s Digital Dialogues

The Maryland Institute for Technology in the Humanities (MITH) has announced their Fall 2018 Digital Dialogues lineup. Among the speakers is Recovery’s Postdoctoral Fellow, Dr. Lorena Gauthereau. She will be presenting “Elaborating a (Digital) Methodology of the Oppressed in US Latina/o Digital Humanities” on September 25th at 12:30 EST (1:30 CST). (You can read her abstract below or on the Digital Dialogues page). For those unable to attend in person, MITH will be live streaming video and live tweeting via @digdialog and the hashtag #mithdd. Please be sure to visit MITH’s official page for the full Digital Dialogues line up!

Digital Dialogues at the Maryland Institute for Technology in the Humanities (MITH)

Abstract: “Elaborating a (Digital) Methodology of the Oppressed in US Latina/o Digital Humanities,” Lorena Gauthereau, Ph.D. (University of Houston)

Abstract cross-posted from MITH’s Digital Dialogues. (See original page here: https://mith.umd.edu/dialogues/dd-fall-2018-lorena-gauthereau/)

Archives and Digital Humanities (DH) projects that showcase minority voices can disrupt the mainstream perceptions of history and the literary canon; yet all too often, large-scale DH projects and archives reinforce Western epistemology and ontology. In response, some postcolonial and feminist scholars have approached DH from the margins of cultural and political life in order to encourage DH scholars to create and adopt methodologies that engage decolonial theory. Such methodologies consider how digital scholarship frames knowledge and knowledge-production. While national archives help to structure knowledge through a state-sanctioned narrative, decolonial DH methodologies seek to address the silences not only in digital scholarship, but also in the official archive.

Drawing on Women of Color (WOC) theory such as Chela Sandoval’s Methodology of the Oppressed (2000), I discuss the digital implications and applications of “oppositional consciousness” and Affect theory. In this talk, I focus on the emerging US Latina/o Digital Humanities initiative at the Recovering the US Hispanic Literary Heritage project (aka “Recovery”) in order to examine structural colonial problems encountered in US Latina/o DH and the stakes of digital decolonial praxis.

 

¡Extra, Extra! The Hispanic Literary Heritage of Texas public exhibit

The University of Houston's Arte Público Press/ Recovering the US Hispanic Literary Heritage Presents: Extra, Extra! The Hispanic Literary Heritage of Texas at the Central Houston Public Library. September 7 through October 31, 2018. Free exhibit! Visit the Central Houston Public Library to view newspapers and rare books from the Arte Público Press/Recovery collection! Location: 2nd and 3rd floors of the Central Houston Public Library. 500 McKinney Street, Houston, Texas 77002. Visit Arte Puúblico Press website at atrepublicopress.com. Exhibit curated by Elena V. Valdez (Rice University) and supported by a grant frm the Rice University Humanities Research Center.

¡Extra, Extra! The Literary Heritage of Texas, on display Sept. 7-Oct. 31, 2018 at the Central Houston Public Library

¡Extra, Extra! The Hispanic Literary Heritage of Texas is an exhibit of Spanish-language newspapers and first-edition books from the Arte Público Press/Recovering the US Hispanic Literary Heritage collections. This is a free exhibit located on the 2nd and 3rd floors of the Central Houston Public Library (500 McKinney Street, Houston, Tex 77002). The exhibit includes rare books, newspaper facsimiles, and photographs.

On the 3rd floor, a special exhibit explains the editorial process for Piñata Books, an imprint of Arte Público dedicated to the publication—in English, Spanish and bilingual formats—of children’s and young adult literature focusing on US Hispanic culture.

This exhibit was curated by Elena V. Valdez (Rice University) and supported by a grant from the Rice University Humanities Research Center.  It will be on display from September 7 through October 31, 2018.

Digital components of this exhibit coming soon!

Next week: Recovery scholars in Mexico City

Recovery DH2018

The countdown has begun for DH2018, an international conference on Digital Humanities. Recovery scholars will be presenting on US Latino Digital Humanities on a variety of panels with other digital humanists concerned with social justice and minority archives. Make sure to follow the hashtags #DH2018 and #usLdh as well as our Twitter account, @AppRecovery for updates and live tweets!

Wednesday, June 27, 2:00 pm

De la teoría a la práctica: Visualización digital de las comunidades en la frontera México-Estados Unidos

Maira E. Álvarez and Sylvia Fernández

 

Thursday, June 28, 4:00 pm

Legado de las/los latinas/os en los Estados Unidos: Proyectos de DH con archivos de Recovery

Isis Campos, Annette Zapata, Sylvia Fernández, and Maira E. Álvarez,

 

Friday, June 29, 11:00 am

Social Justice, Data Curation, and Latin American and Caribbean Studies

Lorena Gauthereau, Hannah Alpert-Abrams (University of Texas-Austin), Alex Galarza (Haverford College), Mario H. Ramírez (Indiana University), and Crystal Andrea Felima (University of Florida)

 

Friday, June 29, 4:00 pm

Justice-Based DH, Practice, and Communities

Gabriela Baeza Ventura, Carolina Villarroel, Vika Zafrin (Boston University), Purdom Lindblad (University of Maryland), and Roopika Risam (Salem State University)

USLDH: US Latino Digital Humanities

Spring 2018: And that’s a wrap!

On Friday, May 18th, we wrapped up our Spring 2018 speaker series and workshops on Digital Humanities and Social Justice. The series brought leading scholars in digital humanities to the University of Houston campus. These scholars included: Jeremy Boggs (University of Virginia), Purdom Lindblad (Maryland Institute for Technology in the Humanities/MITH), María Cotera (University of Michigan), Alex Gil (Columbia University), Élika Ortega (Northeastern University), and Roopika Risam (Salem State University).

These speakers lectured on how they are working to engage and create ethical, socially conscious methodologies. If you missed any of the lectures, or if you want to re-watch one you attended, you can now watch these videos online (Events> Speaker Series and Workshops > Videos). Click here to watch the videos!

We would like to extend a thank you to all of our supporters throughout the semester: the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, Arte Público Press, the Digital Research Commons (DRC) at MD Anderson Library, the Houston Arts Alliance,  South Asian Youth in Houston Unite (SAYHU) and the Women’s Gender & Sexuality Studies (WGSS) Program at the University of Houston.

Thank you to all those who attended the lectures and workshops (both in person and virtually)– you helped make this a success!

We look forward to bringing the community more #usLdh (US Latino Digital Humanities) speakers, workshops, and events!

Follow Recovering the US Hispanic Literary Heritage on Social Media!

Twitter: @AppRecovery

Personal Archives and History

This week, the University of Houston Libraries hosted the 2018 Personal Digital Archiving Conference (April 23-25). You can check out the Twitter conversations by searching for the #PDA18 hashtag or view the conference website (and presentation abstracts) here: https://sites.lib.uh.edu/pda18/.

Hosted by the University of Houston Libraries. #PDA18 PDA is the only conference focused on the personal digital archive, including projects and presentations from both individuals and organizations. sites.lib.uh.edu/pda18 Houston, TX - April 23-25, 2018. Personal Digital Archiving Conference

April 23-25, 2017

On Monday, I presented on Recovering the US Hispanic Literary Heritage with my colleagues, Dr. Gabriela Baeza Ventura and Dr. Carolina Villarroel. We talked about Recovery’s mission, our collections, and our developing US Latinx Digital Humanities programming. We thought this conference provided us with a great opportunity to talk about how important personal archives are for US Latinx history. (You can watch the video on our Facebook page here.)

It goes without saying that minority stories have often fallen by the wayside when writing mainstream history. There are significant gaps in our historical record and this is where personal archives come into play. Many of Recovery’s own collections have changed the way we view American history and have elaborated on the role Latinxs have played in American society and culture. For decades, scholars tried to justify the absence of Latinx authors in the US canon by claiming Latinxs did not produce literature. Yet, Recovery’s preservation efforts challenged that assumption by recovering manuscripts and Spanish-language newspapers dating back to the colonial period.  Among these texts is María Amparo Ruiz de Burton’s collection, which includes two novels: Who Would Have Thought it? (1872) and The Squatter and the Don (1885). Ruiz de Burton is considered the first Mexican American woman to have published in the United States in English.

Panel

From left to right: Dr. Carolina Villarroel, Dr. Gabriela Baeza Ventura, and Dr. Lorena Gauthereau presenting at the University of Houston Libraries Personal Digital Archiving Conference on April 23, 2018.

During the presentation, I gave three examples of personal archives that we have in our collections: Leonor Villegas de Magnón, Emilio Sarabia, and Alonso S. Perales (You may remember reading about Villegas de Magnón and Perales in previous blog entries.) These collections help to deepen our understanding of the Mexican Revolution, the Houston Latinx community, and Mexican American civil rights, respectively.

Leonor Villegas de Magnón

Leonora Villegas de Magnón was a teacher, journalist, and political activist who lived on the US-Mexico border at the turn of the century. In 1910, at the beginning of the Mexican Revolution, she and her family immigrated from Nuevo Laredo, Mexico to Laredo, Texas to escape the fighting. Yet, she didn’t stay away from the Revolution. Instead, she, along with Elena Arizmendi Mejia, founded La Cruz Blanca, or the Neutral White Cross, a neutral volunteer nursing corps. La Cruz Blanca provided medical attention for wounded revolutionaries, regardless of their allegiance. Villegas de Magnón turned her home into a makeshift hospital to tend to the wounded.

Leonor Villegas de Magnón on left, wearing long dark dress, crossed bullet belts, and hat, holding a rifle. Right-side of photo: Aracelito García in dark long sleeves coat and long dark skirt, facing Leonor. Between them, on horseback, holding a rifle, sits Guillermo Martinez Celis.

Leonor Villegas de Magnón, Aracelito García, and Guillermo Martínez Celis. From Recovering the US Hispanic Literary Heritage’s Leonor Villegas de Magnón Collection

Aware of the historical significance of the women’s involvement in the Mexican Revolution,Villegas de Magnón hired a photographer to document as much as possible. After the Revolution, she wrote her memoirs in Spanish, which she titled La Rebelde. When Mexican publishers refused to publish a woman’s writing on the Revolution, she re-wrote it in English (The Rebel). Once again, her manuscript was rejected. Decades later, through the recovery efforts of our board member, Dr. Clara Lomas, we were able to locate the collection and fulfill Villegas de Magnón’s wish to publish her manuscripts with Arte Público Press both in English and in Spanish (see Archival Research: Recovering Oppressed Voices for a brief outline of the provenance of this collection.)

Emilio Sarabia

Emilio Sarabia is a Houston dentist and local historian. His collection documents the culture and impact of the Houston Mexican immigrant community.

Top: Group photo, people standing on the patio of a house in 1899. Bottom: same house in 1999. Caption at the bottm: 1520 Center Street-1999. Righthand side of image: facsimile of a letter (illegible).

From Recovering the US Hispanic Literary Heritage’s Sarabia Collection

His family established the Azteca Theatre, the first movie theater in Houston for Spanish-language films. Sarabia’s collection documents the development of the Hispanic community in Houston and contains photographs of buildings that were significant to the community, many of which still stand today. These photographs, therefore, help to provide a cultural map of Houston.

Alonso S. Perales

Alonso S. Perales was the third Mexican American lawyer and co-founder of the League of United Latin American Citizens (LULAC). He was deeply committed to fighting for the civil rights of Mexican Americans. His collection is extensive, measuring 17 linear feet and includes photographs, correspondence, LULAC materials, books, essays, speeches, and more (see also “LULAC Council 60 Clubhouse: This Place Matters”).

PeralesBW

Alonso S. Perales. From Recovering the US Hispanic Literary Heritage’s Alonso S. Perales Collection

The Perales collection not only documents the creation and organization of LULAC, but also the rise of Mexican American civil rights activism in Texas during the 1930s and 1940s. Among his collection are scores of letters documenting discrimination against people of Mexican descent at restaurants, public parks, barber shops, hotels, and even schools. Recently, while I was digging through his papers at UH Special Collections, I found a heartbreaking letter addressed to Perales from James L. Collins, Commanding Major General of the US Army. In this letter, General Collins acknowledges having received Perales’ letter regarding American soldiers of Mexican descent being refused service while in uniform. Regrettably, Collins responds:

While Article 157 of the Texas Penal Code makes it an offense, punishable by a fine, for any person to discriminate against anyone because of his membership in the United States Army, or because of his wearing any Army uniform; unfortunately, in the instant case, the discrimination complained of was due to the nativity of the soldiers and not because of their being soldiers. (Feb. 8, 1941)

Perales’ collection, thus, chronicles his continuous efforts to combat discrimination in any way that was accessible to him and his community: writing letters to elected officials, publishing (and calling out) the people and establishments guilty of racial discrimination in newspapers, giving speeches on civil rights activism, and more. This personal archive fills in the gaps of US Latina/o civil rights history prior to the Chicana/o Movement in the 1960s.

Delis Negrón Poster Presentation

In addition to our panel, Recovery Graduate Research Assistant and UH Doctoral Candidate, Sylvia Fernández presented a poster on Delis Negrón, a Puerto Rican poet, journalist, and activist. Fernández presented a forthcoming digital project undertaken by the Recovery Graduate Assistants (Isis Campos, Victoria Moreno, and Annette Zapata): The Delis Negrón Digital Biography, which includes digitized photographs, postcards, correspondence, newspaper clippings, and more. This project will be hosted on Omeka and will include various interactive functions.

"Delis Negrón Digital Archive: From a Personal Archive to a Digital Project" poster, with images of letters, newspaper clippings, and photographs of Delis Negrón

Recovery RA and UH PhD Candidate, Sylvia Fernández, presented her poster, “Delis Negrón Digital Archive: From a Personal Archive to a Digital Project” at the 2018 Personal Digital Archiving Conference

 Digitizing Personal Archives

Digitizing these archives is a way to preserve the history that has been left out of history books. With growing access to open-source archiving platforms, we hope that more minority stories will begin to make their way into the public eye. We are currently working to create digital projects focused on the following individuals’ personal archives: Delis Negrón, Alonso S. Perales, and Emilio Sarabia. Keep checking our blog for updates on these digital humanities projects!

Works cited

Baeza Ventura, G., Gauthereau, L., and Villarroel, C. “Recovering the US Hispanic Literary Heritage.” Personal Digital Archiving Conference, University of Houston Libraries, Houston, TX. Facebook. 23 April 2018.
https://www.facebook.com/RecoveringUSHispanicHeritage/videos/456131244842706/

“To Mr. Alonso S. Perales, Director General, League of Loyal Americans, From James L. Collins, Major General, U. S. Army, Headquarters Second Division, February 8, 1941.”, Alonso S. Perales Collection: The Committee of One Hundred Citizens & the League of Loyal Citizens, 1927-1954. April 2, 1934. http://ezproxy.lib.uh.edu/login?url=http://search.ebscohost.com/login.aspx?direct=true&db=h6b&A N=76512618&site=ehost-live&ppid=divp80&lpid=divl68

Further reading:

Cutler, Leigh. Interview with Emilio Sarabia. November 3, 2004. Special Collections, University of Houston Libraries. University of Houston Digital Library. https://digital.lib.uh.edu/collection/houhistory/item/1676/show/1675.

Olivas, Michael A. (ed.) In Defense of My People: Alonso S. Perales and the Development of Mexican-American Public Intellectuals. Arte Público Press, 2013.

Sarabia, Emilio A. Four Brothers. Houston, TX: Arte Público Press, 2015.

Villegas de Magnón, Leonor. La Rebelde. ed. Clara Lomas. Houston, TX: Arte Público Press, 2004.

_____. The Rebel. ed. Clara Lomas. Houston, TX: Arte Público Press, 1994.


Lorena Gauthereau is a CLIR Postdoctoral Fellow at Recovering the US Hispanic Literary Heritage at the University of Houston. Find her online at https://lorenagauthereau.wordpress.com.

Personal Digital Archiving Conference

Hosted by the University of Houston Libraries. #PDA18 PDA is the only conference focused on the personal digital archive, including projects and presentations from both individuals and organizations. sites.lib.uh.edu/pda18 Houston, TX - April 23-25, 2018. Personal Digital Archiving Conference

Next week, Recovery scholars will be presenting at the 2018 Personal Digital Archiving Conference, hosted by the University of Houston Libraries. This conference will include a range of presentations, including:

  • Examples of successful projects or learning experiences related to personal digital archives
  • Why personal digital archives matter to individuals, communities, and organizations
  • Distinctions between personal information management and the archive
  • Key threats to personal digital archives, including cost, disaster, technology change, and social threats
  • Applying selection criteria or other management tools for personal digital archives
  • The digital archive during a person’s life and after death
  • Management tools and techniques for personal digital archives

Drs. Gabriela Baeza Ventura, Carolina Villarroeal, and Lorena Gauthereau will be presenting a panel on “Recovering the US Hispanic Literary Heritage” (scheduled for Monday, April 23, 3:45pm-5:00pm), which will focus on the ways that personal archives have helped fill in the gaps of mainstream history. In addition to giving an overview of our mission, they will discuss some of the personal archive collections that were donated to Recovery and how these collections have significantly contributed to the field of US Latina/o Studies, helped to highlight the role of Latina/os in the US, and provide a more robust historical narrative of local communities.

Recovery Graduate Research Assistants will be presenting at the conference as well. On Monday, April 23 at 5:00pm, Sylvia Fernández and Annette Zapata will present “Delis Negrón Digital Biography: From a Personal Archive to a Digital Project.”

The conference will be held at Elizabeth D. Rockwell Pavillion University of Houston M.D. Anderson Library, 4333 University Drive, Houston, TX.

For more information and to register for the conference, please visit the PDA website: https://sites.lib.uh.edu/pda18/
(Registration required to attend.)

The full schedule is available here: https://sites.lib.uh.edu/pda18/schedule/

Nexus Brown Bag Lunch at ASU

March 22, 2018

This week, Drs. Gabriela Baeza Ventura and Carolina Villarroel will be visiting the Nexus Digital Research Co-op at Arizona State University. On Thursday, March 22, 2018, Baeza Ventura and Villarroel will give a presentation on Arte Público Press, Recovering the US Hispanic Literary Heritage, and US Latina/o Digital Humanities at Nexus. The conversation will be live-tweeted via the #usldh hashtag.

For more information, please visit the Nexus event page.

Make sure to follow Recovery on Twitter at @AppRecovery and Nexus at @IHRNexus.