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Performing Latina/o/x Futurity (Sawyer Seminar Closing Conference)

Mar 26, 2021

All Day

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Virtual Event

Imagining Latinidades 2021

In this closing conference for the Mellon Foundation-funded Sawyer Seminar, eight invited scholars of Latina/o/x studies help wrap-up the ongoing conversation about “Imagining Latinidades.” We make the turn to practices of performing and imaging Latinidades now and into the future by inviting leading scholars in the fields of Performance Studies, Queer Studies, Cultural Studies, and Latina/o/x Studies to participate in a closing conference. One set of speakers will discuss Latina/o/x cultural production that complicates and rejects homogenizing tendencies of Latino identity formation for alternative community formations.

Leticia Alvarado is Assistant Professor of American Studies and Ethnic Studies at Brown University whose interdisciplinary research is situated at the nexus of Latina/o/x, visual culture, and gender and sexuality studies.

Gaye Theresa Johnson is Associate Professor in the César E. Chávez Department of Chicana/o and Central American Studies and the Department of African American Studies at the University of California Los Angeles. She specializes in race and racism, cultural history, spatial politics, and political economy.

Lawrence La Fountain-Stokes is Professor of American Culture, Romance Languages and Literatures, and Women’s Studies at the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, and the former director of the Latina/o Studies Program. His research interests are queer/LGBT Hispanic Caribbean studies, and U.S. Latina/o and Latin American literary, cultural, and performance studies.

John Mckiernan-González is Associate Professor in the Department of History at Texas State University at San Marcos. He specializes in Mexican American History, Latino Studies, Social and Cultural History of Medicine, and Immigration History.

Cathryn Merla-Watson is an advanced Assistant Professor in the Department of Literatures and Cultural Studies; affiliate faculty in Mexican American Studies; and Co-Director of Gender and Women’s Studies at the University of Texas-Río Grande Valley. Her research interests broadly include Latinx studies, Latinx speculative aesthetics, queer theory, performance studies; Chicana and Latina feminisms, and social justice research methodologies.

Catherine S. Ramírez is Associate Professor of Latin American and Latino Studies at the University of California, Santa Cruz. She is a scholar of migration, citizenship, and race, Mexican-American history, Latinx literary and cultural studies, feminist and gender studies, and speculative fiction.

Ramón Rivera-Servera is Professor of Performance Studies and Art Theory and Practice at Northwestern University. Rivera-Servera’s research focuses on 20th and 21st Century performance in North America and the Caribbean with special emphasis on the way experiences of race, ethnicity, gender, and sexuality are negotiated across national borders through migratory circuits of circulation and exchange. 

Richard T. Rodríguez is Associate Professor of Media & Cultural Studies at the University of California, Riverside. He specializes in Latina/o/x literary and cultural studies, film and visual culture, and queer studies with additional interests in transnational cultural studies, popular music studies, and comparative ethnic studies. 

In its modified format to be entirely online, this closing conference will offer slightly condensed presentations and Q&A sessions. Please visit the Imagining Latinidades website for more details about platform and for the full schedule.

Individuals with disabilities are encouraged to attend all University of Iowa–sponsored events. If you are a person with a disability who requires a reasonable accommodation in order to participate in this program, please contact in advance at