Wikipedia Edit-A-Thon

Houston Wikipedia Edit-A-Thon

Last month, The Black Lunch Table (BLT) project teamed up with Recovering the US Hispanic Literary Heritage/Arte Público Press to host a Wikipedia Edit-A-Thon to create, update, and improve Wikipedia articles related to US Latinx authors, artists, academics, and organizations as well as people from the African Diaspora.

Students and scholars from across the country joined us in personal and virtually from the University of Houston, Pace University, the University of Wisconsin-Parkside, the University of Texas-Arlington, the University of Texas Rio Grande Valley, Texas A&M Prairie View University, Houston Community College, and The Colorado College.

33 beginners and experts alike worked together to add a grand total of 11, 400 words, edit 31 articles, create 192 edits, upload 3 commons files, and create 1 brand new article.

We look forward to hosting similar events in the future!

To read more about BLT, please visit Wikipedia: Meetup/BlackLunchTable/ListofArticles

Advertisements

Call for Abstracts: XV Recovering the US Hispanic Literary Heritage Conference

Histories and Cultures of Latinas: Suffrage, Activism and Women’s Rights

February 20-22, 2020
University of Houston
Houston, Texas

The XV Recovery conference will convene in Houston from February 20 to 22, 2020 to continue the legacy of scholars meeting to discuss and present their research. The conference theme invites scholars—including archivists, librarians, linguists, historians, critics, theorists and community members–to share examples of the cultural legacy they are recovering, preserving and making available about the culture of the Hispanic world whose peoples resided here, immigrated to or were exiled in the United States over the past centuries. This conference foregrounds the work of Latinas that focuses on women’s rights, suffrage and education as we usher in a new phase of feminist critical genealogies. We seek papers, panels and posters in either English or Spanish that highlight these many contributions, but also offer us critical ways to rethink issues of agency, gender, sexualities, race/ethnicity, class and power. Of particular interest are presentations about digital humanities scholarship, methods and practices on these themes.   

The end date for Recovery research and themes will now be 1980 in order to give scholars, archivists, linguists and librarians the stimulus needed to begin recovering the documentary legacy of the 1960s and 1970s, which is fast disappearing. We encourage papers or panels that make use of archival research that provokes a revision of established literary interpretations and/or historiographies. Papers on locating, preserving and making accessible movement(s) documents generated by Latinas and Latinos in those two decades will be welcome. Studies on the following themes, as manifested before 1960, will be welcome:

  • Digital Humanities
  • Analytical studies of recovered authors and/or texts
  • Critical, historical and theoretical approaches to recovered texts    
  • Curriculum development: Integrating recovered texts into teaching at university and K-12 levels
  • Religious thought and practice
  • Folklore/oral histories
  • Historiography
  • Language, translation, bilingualism and linguistics
  • Library and information science
  • Social implications, cultural analyses
  • Collections and archives: accessioning and critical archive studies    
  • Documenting the long road/struggle toward equality
  • 1960-1980 only movement(s)-related research 

Additionally, XV Recovering the US Hispanic Literary Heritage Conference will offer two US Latino Digital Humanities (USLDH; #usLdh) pre-conference workshops open to conference attendees and members of the public. The workshop themes are: 1) Using Recovery archives for traditional scholarship and 2) Introduction to Digital Humanities. Pre-registration is required, a limited number of scholarships may be available. We welcome general audiences including undergraduate and graduate students. Undergraduate students are encouraged to submit proposals for poster presentations. Submit your 250-word abstract and vitae to Conftool by August 31, 2019

For details, email us at recovery@uh.edu 

To download the PDF, click here.

University of Houston, Recovering the US Hispanic Literary Heritage
4902 Gulf Fwy., Bldg. 19, Room 100 – Houston, TX 77204-2004 

Digital Hispanisms: Using Third World Feminism in DH

I gave the following talk on Jan. 5, 2019 at the Modern Language Association (MLA) Convention held in Chicago, IL.

This talk was part of a TC Digital Humanities sponsored roundtable on Digital Hispanisms with Alex Saum-Pascual (UC, Berkeley), Sylvia Fernández (U. of Houston), Nora Benedict (Princeton U), Vanessa Ceia (McGill U), Lorena Gauthereau (U. of Houston), Hilda Chacón (Nazareth College). This roundtable was designed to spark a conversation on the intersections between Digital Humanities (DH) and Hispanic Studies (HS). For all the speakers’ abstracts, please visit: https://mla.hcommons.org/groups/digital-humanities/forum/topic/mla19-582-roundtable-digital-hispanisms-2/

As we reflect on Digital Hispanisms in this roundtable, I want to briefly describe the types of theoretical frameworks and methodologies that emerge when engaging the digital humanities (DH) through US Latinx Studies. Specifically, I am interested in the groundwork laid by Chicana and Third World feminists. Rather than continuing to center hegemonic Anglophone theorists, I argue that by drawing from the lived experiences of Women of Color, we can shift the types of conversations taking place in the field of digital humanities. As a Woman of Color, I recognize that we cannot rely on hegemonic DH theory to acknowledge, much less accurately represent, our lived experiences and the digital stories we tell. As an example of DH discourse elaborated from the perspective of Third World feminism, I will discuss my mapping project, “Are We Good Neighbors?” and how my proposed theoretical framework highlights what is at stake in doing this type of DH: it’s a matter of humanizing a past that has all too often been silenced. Third World feminism accounts for the way that theory and lived experience meld, and stresses that the theoretical needs to be grounded in the flesh because our experiences cannot be separated from who we are.

Garcia, Adriana.  Liminal Incubation, 2012.

“Are We Good Neighbors?” is a story map that includes transcriptions of affidavits and maps incidents of discrimination against Mexican Americans in Texas during the 1940s. These affidavits are from the Alonso S. Perales Collection at the University of Houston’s Recovering the US Hispanic Literary Heritage. Perales was one of the first Mexican Americans to practice law in the US and one of the co-founders of the civil rights organization, the League of United Latin American Citizens (or LULAC) (Olivas xi). In addition to practicing law, he was also a diplomat, veteran, civil rights activist, and author of two books: En defensa de mi raza (In Defense of My People) and Are We Good Neighbors?, from which I drew the digital project’s name. As part of his activism, Perales encouraged the Mexican American community to report discrimination and to call out, by name, the public establishments in which these incidents occurred. As a result, his archival collection includes hundreds of affidavits and letters.

One after another, these accounts tell stories of the quotidian: going out for dinner with family, spending time with friends, moving to a new house, riding the bus to school, or even going to the barber shop for a haircut. Yet, for Mexican Americans in the 1940s, these quotidian activities are marked by disgust, hatred, shame, fear, and even violence. And these negative affects are felt and worn on the body. Mapping these instances gives a materiality to the offenses, geolocating them in neighborhoods and commercial centers still frequented today. When the bodies of those who experienced this discrimination are long gone, it is our bodies that can physically stand in these places.

Framed through the lens of Third World feminists, such as Sara Ahmed, Gloria Anzaldúa, and Cherríe Moraga, “Are We Good Neighbors?” reveals the personal history of racism, one that takes place in our neighborhoods to real people, rather than distanced through abstract statistics. What becomes apparent when mapping these accounts is the personal and normalized embodiment of racism in the US. The juxtaposition of these affidavits and maps call people to be witnesses through time and affectively embed the experience in its physical location. These locations are often places that we can imagine ourselves in. Remembering injustices through this type of witnessing makes people of color visible, and is, as Ahmed writes, “about claiming an injustice did happen; this claim is a radical one in the face of the forgetting of such injustices” (2004; 200).

Take for example the affidavit sworn by Amada B. Quesnot, the mother of five-year old Eugene Quesnot. On November 13, 1941, she attempted to take little Eugene to M&S Clinic for treatment yet was turned away because of her ethnicity. Amada writes,

The lady in charge in the Social Workers Room asked me if I was Latin American and when I replied in the affirmative she stated that no Latin American children were accepted for treatment at that Clinic.

(Quesnot qtd. in Perales 204)
Quesnot, Amada , “Affidavit sworn by Amada Quesnot to Alonso S. Perales,” Recovering the US Hispanic Literary Heritage Digital Collections.

Turned away, Amada insists upon her own legitimacy in her letter, tracing it through her US citizenship and both her husband’s and older son’s military service. She was born here, she protests. But her brown skin is read as un-American; and the brown skin of her five-year old child is read as undeserving of medical attention. Her decision to write the letter affirms her need to do something, to plead for political action. She documents a struggle, a status quo that needs to change. Her lived reality is tied to this political desire. Cherrie Moraga’s theory in the flesh makes this connection; a theory in the flesh, she writes, is a theory in which “the physical realities of our lives–our skin color, the land of concrete we grew up on, our sexual longings–all fuse to create a politic born out of necessity” (19). Echoing Moraga’s (1981) argument that theory is fused to the body, Sara Ahmed states that:

The personal is theoretical. Theory itself is often assumed to be abstract: something is more theoretical the more abstract it is, the more it is abstracted from everyday life. To abstract is to drag away, detach, pull away, or divert. We might then have to drag theory back, to bring theory back to life.

(2017; 10)

Gloria Anzaldúa’s (1987) mestiza consciousness then weaves these two together. It is the thread that ties the theory to the flesh. Anzaldúa imagines the mestiza putting

history through a sieve…This step is a conscious rupture with all oppressive traditions of all cultures and religions. She communicates that rupture, documents the struggle. She reinterprets history and, using new symbols, she shapes new myths.

(Anzaldúa 104)

Mestiza consciousness as an approach to DH calls us to read for the silences in historical narratives, to discard the frameworks that marginalize the experiences of people of color, and to invent new theories and methodologies that center our lived experiences.

Turning to Third World feminism in DH, then, reminds us to bring theory back to life, to bring it back to the lived experience. “Doing DH” isn’t just about the final product, but also about the process of dragging theory back and embodying it. Moreover, shifting the loci of enunciation from the center to the margin, reimagines DH not just as a site of knowledge-production, but also as a site of decolonial resistance and social justice. Our digital work does not need to be reduced to mere zeros and ones or replicate the canonical archive of dead white men’s work, but instead can be a space to reclaim lost histories, reveal injustices, and demand that our voices be heard. Allow me to end with one last Ahmed quotation in order to highlight the importance of thinking through DH via Third World feminism; I ask that you reflect on digital scholarship and digitized archives as I read this: “Your texts are littered with love. Words can pulse with life; words as flesh, leaking; words as heart, beating.” (2017; 230). Thank you.

Works cited

Ahmed, Sara. Cultural Politics of Emotion. Routledge, 2014.

_____. Living a Feminist Life. Duke University Press, 2017.

Anzaldúa, Gloria E. Borderlands/La Frontera: The New Mestiza. Aunt Lute Books, 1987.

Moraga, Cherríe and Gloria E. Anzaldúa. This Bridge Called My Back.Writings by Radical Women of Color. 4th ed., SUNY Press, 2015.

Olivas, Michael A. (ed.) In Defense of My People: Alonso S. Perales and the Development of Mexican-American Public Intellectuals. Houston: Arte Público Press, 2012.

Quesnot, Amada , “Affidavit sworn by Amada Quesnot to Alonso S. Perales,” Alonso S. Perales Collection. Recovering the US Hispanic Literary Heritage Digital Collections.

________________________________________

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.

#usLdh: Latinos en los Estados Unidos en la era de las humanidades digitales

Acompáñenos HOY, jueves, 17 de enero a las 2:00 EST, para “#usLdh: Latinos en los Estados Unidos en la era de las humanidades digitales,” un seminario en línea sobre el Programa de Recuperación del legado escrito de las/los latina/o/xs en los Estados Unidos (Recovering the US Hispanic Literary Heritage). Este seminario es parte de la serie Desmantelando Fronteras/Breaking Down Borders de la sociedad de archivistas americanas, Society of American Archivists (SAA) Latin American and Caribbean Cultural Heritage Archives (LACCHA).

Las Dras. Gabriela Baeza Ventura, Carolina Villarroel, y Lorena Gauthereau hablarán sobre los antecedentes del program, la práctica de la custodia compartida (post-custodial), la creación del primer centro de humanidades digitales enfocado en estudios US Latinxs, y los proyectos digitales que se están desarrollando en este momento.

El seminario se puede acceder a través de Adobe Connect: https://fiuconnect.adobeconnect.com/rtduomvagjq7

Habrá oportunidades para hacer preguntas en vivo.

Referencias bibliográficas de la presentación:

Alexander, Jacqui M., and Chandra Talpede Mohanty. Feminist Genealogies, Colonial Legacies, Democratic Futures. Routledge, 1997.

Bailey, Moya Z. “All the Digital Humanists Are White, All the Nerds Are Men, but Some of Us Are Brave.” Journal of Digital Humanities, vol. 1, 2011. http://journalofdigitalhumanities.org/

Cotera, María. “Nuestra Autohistoria: Toward a Chicana Digital Praxis.” American Quarterly, vol. 70, no. 3, Sept. 2018, pp. 483–504. Project MUSE, doi:10.1353/aq.2018.0032.

“Digital Humanities and Social Justice Series: Videos.” Recovering the US Hispanic Literary Heritage. https://artepublicopress.com/recovery-project/events-2/videos/

Kanellos, Nicolás. Hispanic Periodicals in the United States, Origins to 1960 a Brief History and Comprehensive Bibliography. Arte Publico Press, 2000.

Lazo, Rodrigo. “Migrant Archives: New Routes in and out of American Studies.” States of Emergency, edited by Russ Castronovo and Susan Gillman, University of North Carolina Press, 2009, pp. 36–54.

Pérez, Emma. The Decolonial Imaginary: Writing Chicanas into History. Indiana University Press, 1999.

Risam, Roopika. Beyond the Margins: Intersectionality and the Digital Humanities. Vol. 9, no. 2, 2015. Digital Humanities Quarterly, http://www.digitalhumanities.org/dhq/vol/9/2/000208/000208.html.

Sandoval, Chela. Methodology of the Oppressed. Univ Of Minnesota Press, 2000.

 

MLA 2019: US Latinx panels

Several Recovery scholars will be attending MLA 2019 and presenting their work on recovered US Latinx literature. Make sure to check out the following sessions that include Recovery board members, scholars, students, and related Recovery material.

Are you presenting on recovered US Latinx literature and/or US Latinx Digital Humanities at MLA 2019? Please share your panel details in the comments below!

Thursday, Jan. 3

La Tolteca in Chicago and Beyond
1:45-3:00pm, Roosevelt 1, Hyatt Recency 
Presiding: Olga Herrera, U of St. Thomas, MN

  1. “Writing around New Mexico in Ana Castillo’s So Far From God,” Anna Maria Nogar, U of New Mexico, Albuquerque
  2. “Queering Place in Ana Castillo’s Git It to Me, “ Daniel Shank Cruz, Utica C
  3. “Corporeal Containment: Sexual Excess and Racialized Sexuality in the New Chicana Narrative,” Bernadine Hernández, U of New Mexico, Albuquerque

Friday, Jan. 4

223.Visual and Literary Intersections of Chicanidad
10:15-11:30 am, Acapulco, Hyatt Regency
Presiding: José Navarro, California Polytechnic State U, San Luis Obispo

  1. “Literature in/and Art: Carlota d. R. EspinoZa’s Graphic Library,” Melina Vizcaíno-Alemán, U of New Mexico, Albuquerque
  2. ChismeArte: A Critical Geneology,” Victor Valle, California Polytechnic State U, San Luis Obsipo
  3. “Seeing Corridos: or, Gregorio Cortez, Superhero, “ William Orchard, Queens C, City U of New York

272.The Immigrant Experience in Twenty-First-Century Literatures of the United States
12:00 noon-1:15pm, Randolph 3, Hyatt Regency
Presiding: Christopher González, Utah State U

  1. “Immigration and Queer Rites of Passage: Transparent and One Day,” Stephanie Pridgeon, Bates C
  2. “The Art of ‘Straddling Two Places’: Salvadoran-American Poetry in the Twenty-First Century,” Jorge Mauricio Espinoza, U of Cincinnati
  3. “Algorithmic Identity and the Narrative Dynamics of the Twenty-First-Century Immigrant Bildungsroman,” Joanne Freed, Oakland U

295. Almost Latino
1:45-3:00pm Grand Suite 5, Hyatt Regency
Presiding: Rodrigo Lazo, U of California, Irvine

Speakers: Jesse Alemán, U of New Mexico, Albuquerque; Ayendy Bonifacio, Ohio State U, Columbus; Raúl Coronado, U of California, Berkeley; Robert McKee Irwin, U of California, Davis; Carmen Lamas, U of Virginia

361. The Function of American Literary Criticism Now: Fact, Harm, Recognition, and Translation

5:15-6:30pm, Gold Coast Hyatt Regency
Speakers: Nancy Bentley, U of Pennsylvania; Christopher D. Castigilia, Penn State U, University Park; John Alba Cutler, Northwester U; Susan Gilman, U of California, Santa Cruz; Elisa Tamarkin, U of California, Berkeley

Saturday, Jan. 5

466. Chicanx-Riqueñx Chicago
10:15-11:30am, Michigan 2, Hyatt Regency
Presiding: Richard T. Rodriguez, U of California, Riverside

  1. “Will They Even Know We Were Here?: Meet Juan(ito) Doe, La Havana Madrid, and (Dis)Placement in Latina/o/x Chicago,” Lillian Gorman, U of Arizona
  2. “’Revolú-Chicago Jam’ and Other Stories: Reading Rican Chicago in David Hernández’s Writings,” Mirelsie Velasquez, U of Oklahoma
  3. “Brown Girls in the Windy City: Midwest Misfits and Latina/x Young Adult Literature,” Amanda Ellis, U of Houston
  4. “Circulating Identities, Claiming Space: Chicago’s Latina/o/x Alternative Press Culture and the Public Sphere,” Ariana Ruiz, U of Iowa

537. Latinx Chicago: Contemporary Latinx Authors Write on and from Chicago
1:45-3:00pm Columbus AB, Hyatt Regency
Presiding: Carmen Lamas, U of Virginia

Speakers: Reynolds Andújar, Governors State U; Daniel Borzutzky, Wright C; Brenda Cárdenas, U of Wisconsin, Milwaukee; Paul Martínez, Triton College; José Olivarez, Young Chicago Authors; Coya Paz, DePaul U

582. Digital Hispanisms
5-6:30pm Erie, Sheraton Grand

Speakers: Nora Benedict, Princeton U; Vanessa Ceia, McGill U; Sylvia Fernández, U of Houston; Lorena Gauthereau, U of Houston; Élika Ortega, Northeastern U; Alex Saum-Pascual, U of California, Berkeley

Respondent: Hilda Chacón, Nazareth C

Sunday, Jan. 6

674. New Perspectives in Ecocriticism: Latinx Approaches
10:15-11:30am Roosevelt 3, Hyatt Regency
Presiding: Ariana Vigil, U of North Carolina, Chapel Hill

  1. “On Our Backs the Disaster: Climate Crisis in Latinx Communities,” Priscilla Solis Ybarra, U of North Texas
  2. “Environmental Hope in a Neofascist Age: Speculative Futures in Alex Rivera’s Sleep Dealer and Sabrina Vourvoulias’ Ink,” David Vazquez, U of Oregon
  3. “The Scar Where the River Once Ran: Care, Currents, and Cartography in Hector Tobar’s ‘Secret Stream’” William Orchard, Queenc C, City U of New York

New HILT course on: Digital Humanities + Latinx Studies

Recovering the US Hispanic Literary Heritage/Arte Públic Press is excited to announce that Drs. Carolina Villarroel and Gabriela Baeza Ventura will be teaching a course at Humanities Intensive Learning and Teaching (HILT) June 3-7, 2019. The course, “Digital Humanities + Latinx Studies: Doing Work that Matters” explores analog and digital methodologies to create scholarship and knowledge around the experiences of US Latinx peoples.

Participants will be introduced to the process of developing toolkits and resources to explore archival sources of Latinx peoples while taking into account their historical, cultural and political context. Participants will be guided through processes involved in rescuing materials that have been or could fall through the cracks of the institutional apparatus to ask why and how to rethink these processes in order to incorporate these underrepresented communities and their history within the institutional discourse. Villarroel and Baeza Ventura will guide the class in interrogating the lived experiences of transnational, exile, native, immigrant peoples which are crucial at the time of researching, reading, understanding and writing about them.

Questions that this course will cover include, but are not limited to:

  • How do we approach US Latinx experience?
  • How do we understand the importance of ethnic materials in the US?
  • How do we approach and incorporate languages other than English into DH?
  • How to identify materials for future projects (research, copyright issues, etc.)?
  • How do we create meaningful and respectful data?
  • How do we work with the community owners of the knowledge?
  • How do we create knowledge and scholarship based on these materials?
  • How do we engage the local communities?

Participants are expected to complete this course with knowledge of how to use digital surrogates to expand access and dissemination of underrepresented collections, as well as develop  plans for community-building and partnerships that could help further the mission and scope of the projects. The course uses an interdisciplinary approach that at its very base questions archival politics and praxis. Additionally, participants will learn about strategies necessary to advocate for programming, grant writing, and faculty and student engagement (undergraduate and graduate).

No prior technical knowledge is required in this course. Anyone with an interest in Latinx studies and digital humanities is welcome.

This course is based on the work of the Recovering the US Hispanic Literary Heritage program located at the University of Houston, one of the premier research programs for US Latinx scholarship with a trajectory of more than 26 years of locating, preserving, and making available the written legacy of Latinx in the US since colonial times until 1960.

HILT will be held at the campus of Indiana University-Purdue University Indianapolis in Indianapolis, Indiana. For more information, please visit the HILT website: http://dhtraining.org/hilt/conferences/hilt-2019/

Registration is now open for HILT: http://dhtraining.org/hilt/conferences/hilt-2019/dates-costs/

HILTcourse

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.

UH Grad Students Collaborate on National Digital Project, “Torn Apart”

NEWS RELEASE

HOUSTON, TEXAS (September 27, 2018)– UH Hispanic Studies graduate students, Sylvia Fernández and Maira Álvarez, collaborated with leading digital humanities scholars on the creation of Torn Apart/Separados, a digital visualization project that emerges from the immigration crisis that started at the United States-Mexico border. Volume 1 of the project, released on June 25th, 2018, aggregates and cross-references publicly available data to visualize the geography of “zero tolerance” immigration policy in 2018 and immigration incarceration in the USA in general. This initial volume highlights the landscapes, families, and communities affected by the massive web of immigrant detention in the United States.

An article for WIRED magazine, “‘ICE Is Everywhere’: Using Library Science to Map the Separation Crisis,” recognized the Torn Apart model as “more than information […] a living resource, one the team hopes migrants will use to find their families and that researchers will build upon.”

The recently released Volume 2 explores the financial landscape of US Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) and the impact of its increased investment in detention, enforcement, and deportation of immigrant families. Torn Apart’s data analysis reveals that ICE-related government contract values have increased 987% since 2014 and have almost doubled in the past year. The data shows that 16 “fat cat” congressional districts in Virginia, New Mexico, Alaska, California, Florida, Texas, Colorado, Tennessee, Maryland, and New York received 88.53% of ICE contracts between 2014 and 2018 ($8.64 Billion of the total $9.76 Billion in awards).

Torn Apart began with an intense 6-day collaboration, which brought together a collective of academics, scholars, and researchers with extensive experience in teaching and writing about histories of immigration around the world. Collaborators include the Group for Experimental Methods in the Humanities and Borderlands Archives Cartography, with additional contributions from 50 participants. (Full details available on the project’s Credits page.) “The interdisciplinary and collaborative work within this digital, activist, and mobilized humanities,” Fernández reflected, “offers the opportunity to create new ways of interpreting, visualizing, and documenting the histories of communities with a profound message towards social justice and equity in this world.”


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 interest is on 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 lie in 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.