October 5, 1998
By Jennifer McNulty
Patricia Zavella, a professor of community studies, has been named codirector of UCSC's Chicano/Latino Research Center.
Zavella, whose research focuses on feminist theory, U.S.-Mexico transnational migration, and poverty, will share duties with Norma Klahn, an associate professor of literature and cofounder of the center. Zavella assumes the post from Pedro Castillo, an associate professor of history who helped found the center in 1992.
The multidisciplinary center, which is funded by the Office of the President and UCSC, supports campus research related to Chicano, Latino, and Latin American issues, bringing a cross-border perspective to the Americas.
Some of the research being done by scholars at UCSC focuses on the Watsonville area, including work by Zavella and John Borrego, a professor of community studies, who have conducted in-depth interviews with workers in the post-NAFTA era.
Other research areas include the impacts of globalization; gender, ethnicity, and sexuality; border studies; and media and popular culture. About 20 faculty members and nearly 40 graduate students in the fields of sociology, literature, education, anthropology, community studies, and history of consciousness are doing work on Chicano/Latino themes, said Zavella.
Located at Merrill College, the center hosts conferences, supports research clusters made up of faculty and graduate student researchers, sponsors regular colloquia series, brings distinguished visiting scholars from the U.S. and Latin America to campus, and publishes a twice-yearly newsletter that is distributed nationally and internationally.
In addition, the facility has helped attract high-quality graduate students to the campus, said Zavella, whose appointment was effective July 1. Current research-cluster topics include Latinos in California; Mexico in Transition; Borders, Nations, and Regions; Chicana/Latina Feminisms; and Hemispheric Dialogue.
The center fosters interdisciplinary work and international scholarship. Currently, researchers are editing a book based on papers presented at a 1997 conference in Mexico City that was attended by 18 UCSC faculty members, faculty from other UC campuses, and professors from two universities in Mexico. That meeting followed a similar one sponsored by the center and held at UCSC in 1995.
To the Currents home page
To UCSC's home page