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  • 2020 News and Events

    • Generación Uno: Education as Migration
      Wednesday, November 18, 2020 | 5:00 pm | Online via Zoom

      David Hernandez photo, 2020Every year, in the United States, approximately 2.9 million people leave home and head for college. Many leave knowing in their heart of hearts that they will return. Others, just as resolutely, know this is their spatial, social, and potentially economic departure from home. Ethnic Studies scholar, migration expert and first generation faculty member David Hernandez argues that this migration – the cultural geography of class mobility – deserves the kind of attention that cross-border migration gets and that many immigration frameworks – transnationalism, diaspora, push-pull, empire, liminal zones, barrio formation, segmented labor markets – can help explain the dynamics of first-generation college attendance.  Education as migration. A platica. A conversation. A strategy.

    • Plague, COVID-19, and Empire: 1720, 2020
      Thursday, November 12, 2020 | 4:00 pm | Online via Zoom

      Le Chevalier Roze à la Tourette Ensevelissement des cadavres par les forçats Gravure de Thomassin (1727) copyThe ongoing COVID-19 pandemic has left many scrambling for historical analogues. Historians have looked primarily to the 1918 “Spanish” Flu and even the Black Death of the 14th century for comparisons, for lessons, and for answers, as people around the globe confront the COVID-19 pandemic. But there are parallels to another, much lesser-known epidemic, one for which we mark the tricentennial this year. Historian and disaster studies specialist Cindy Ermus (UTSA) is finishing her project on the global implications of the 1720 Great Plague of Marseille (Plague of Provence), which over two years, killed as much as half the population of the city of Marseille, and 20% of the population of Provence, France. Reactions to the threat of plague from France thus stretched across Europe, as well as the colonies in the Atlantic and Asia. Ermus will reflect on the 1720 plague, and on the lessons that it can offer, as we face a new public health crisis—one that continues to unfold and yield more questions than answers.

    • CSSW Spotlight
      Free-Tailed Bat Award Winner

      This year's winner of the Free-Tailed Bat Award for Excellence in Criticism goes to Dr. Brett J. Derbes for his review of Stephen Harrigan's Big Wonderful Thing. Dr. Derbes has been a member of the Texas State Historical Association since 2008, and he has worked as the Managing Editor of the Handbook of Texas since 2015. We congratulate Dr. Derbes and his continuous support for Texas history and scholarship.

    • Farm Labor and Migrant Citizenship in the New Deal
      Monday, October 19, 2020 | 4:00 pm | Online via Zoom

      Verónica Martínez-Matsuda, photo 2020During the 1930s and 1940s, stringent state and local residency laws, combined with deep-seated racial and class prejudice, left migrant farmworkers without a place to enact their basic rights. Even if they were formally U.S. citizens, farmworkers were regularly denied the right to vote, send their children to school, access public aid, and receive medical care because they were considered non-residents or non-citizens of the community and state in which they were seeking services. Labor Studies scholar Verónica Martínez-Matsuda, using federal archives, innovative oral history techniques and digital history methods brought out another story in the records – how farm working families and Farm Security Administrators pushed for enfranchisement through their daily participation as citizens (regardless of formal status) in a political and social community characterized by collective responsibility and behavior.

    • A Transnational Network of Anarcho-Feminists in the Gulf of Mexico
      Monday, October 5, 2020 | 11:00 am | Online via Zoom

      Sonia Hernandez, photo 2020Across the industrial Atlantic, young women and their families organized strikes, slowdowns and factory seizures during the WWI Era.  Dr. Sonia Hernandez traces another organized disruption, how Mexican and Mexican American women in Texas and Tamaulipas worked together through anarcho-syndicalist organizations to push conditions and politics that matched their experiences and desires. Working with archives and the Spanish language press, Dr. Sonia Hernandez, TAMU, tracks a transnationally connected labor movement organized by women and shares insight into the broader industrial, socio-political conditions that made this anarchist movement possible. While anarchism and anarcho-syndicalism declined by the mid-1930s, at least in this region, a transnational anarcho-feminist legacy remained forming part of the history and memory of the Texas-Mexico borderlands.

    • Outsourcing Migrant Control: 100 Years of Privatized Prisons
      Thursday, September 24 2020 | 1:00 pm | Online via Zoom

      David Hernandez, photo 2020Even before the Mexican Revolution, federal authorities started hiring local hotels and prison authorities to hold people they designated as strangers to American law.  Ethnic Studies scholar and sociologist David Hernandez has been tracing the transformation of an overlapping carceral state meant to keep migrants out of the realms of due process and civil rights.  With the recent intensification of physical outsourcing of kids, families and people in the Trump regime, Dr. Hernandez’ work on this process in the 80s, 90s and this millennia speaks to the difficulties in dis-embedding this desire to expel and contain migrant others from American political culture.

    • Texas Prisons and Post WWII Civil Rights
      Thursday, September 17 2020 | 1:00 pm | Online via Zoom

      Texas Prisons and Civil Rights Event ImageAfter World War II, imprisoned men and women used changes in civil rights law to have their shared humanity recognized. In his book We Are Not Slaves: State Violence, Coerced Labor and Prisoners’ Rights in Postwar America, Dr. Robert Chase analyzes the establishment of a civil rights understanding in U.S. prisons and how this victory was beaten back by lawmakers, labor unions, wardens and private corporations.  In this talk, Robert Chase, Ernest McMillan, Dallas activist, founder of Fifth Ward Enrichment and curator of community action at Cara Mia Theatre, and professor Mark Menjivar discuss the specific ways prisons, the prisoner’s rights movement, the civil rights movements and white backlash overlapped in Texas and share the hard lessons gained over 50 years of campaigns and struggle.

    • The Living Treaty of Guadalupe Hidalgo
      Monday, September 14, 2020 | 11:00 am | Online via Zoom

      Omar Vilerio Jimenez, photo 2020In 1846, President Polk ordered U.S. troops to into the disputed area between the Rio Grande and Nueces rivers catalyzing the U.S.-Mexico War of 1846.  In 1848, the United States Senate, after much debate and the highest casualty rate of any war fought by the United States, ratified the Treaty of Guadalupe Hidalgo setting the border between the United States and guaranteeing citizenship and property rights to people who lived in the annexed lands. Omar Valerio-Jiménez explores the ways ethnic Mexicans remembered the war and the treaty.

    • Eduardo Canales & Kate Spradley
      Thursday, September 10, 2020 | 4:00 pm

      HT94 Spradley & Canales Discussion ImageHostile Terrain 94 is hosting a  Zoom conversation between Eduardo Canales of the South Texas Human Rights Center and Kate Spradley of Operation ID at Texas State University. Their conversation will be moderated by John Mckiernan-González, Director of the Center for the Study of the Southwest at Texas State University. This event will address the issue of migrant death at the U.S.-Mexico border and the distinctiveness of this humanitarian crisis within the Texas borderlands. Both panelists are dedicated to the identification and reunification of missing or departed loved ones lost in “hostile terrain.”

      This event is co-sponsored by the Center for the Study of the Southwest at Texas State University.

      The recording of the event can be found on the HT 94 YouTube Channel

    • Culture, Creativity, and COVID 19
      Tuesday, September 1, 2020 | 4:00 pm | Online via Zoom

      COVID 19 Event Art ImageTexas has become a global epicenter and a daily example of how structural racism shapes the COVID19 pandemic.  Responding to this crisis, Paul Saldaña and Sneha Shenoy have developed new ways of galvanizing people to push for a robust community / city response to COVID 19 in their communities.  High school senior Sneha Shenoy & Pledge to Distance designed a format to encourage masking, digitally and in public. Paul Saldaña and the Austin Latino Coalition have taken on the tasks of testing, mask distribution and political education in the zip codes where the pandemic reigns. Both Pledge to Distance and the Austin Latino Coalition reminds us of the creative and productive way community movements,  graphic design, social media and in person testing and mask distribution work together to face structural racism and the pandemic. Come discuss.

    • CSSW Director, John Mckiernan-González, was recently interviewed by the regarding the border wall and COVID19. He was also interviewed by USA Today to get his thoughts on how COVID-19 is impacting Latino communities in Austin and other locations. 

    • Photo of Louie Valencia-GarciaCongratulations to Dr. Louie Dean Valencia-García who was recently interviewed on NPR’s Weekend Edition about the removal of Spanish conquistador statues.  Dr. Valencia-García is a faculty member in the History Department who specializes in Digital History, Queer Youth History, Fascism and the Radical Right, as well as European and Spanish History.

    • Aaricka Washington | The Futures of Education in Texas: Community Perspectives in Pandemic Times
      Thursday, June 25, 5:00 pm | Online via Zoom

      Aaricka Washington | Photo 2020Aaricka Washington is an education reporter based in Austin, Texas. Most recently, she covered breaking news for 15 school districts in Central Texas as the K-12 education reporter for the Austin American-Statesman. During her time at the Statesman, she focused on the experiences of citizens from historically under-resourced communities. Aaricka has reported extensively on the controversial Austin school district closures. She spent hours reporting in school board meetings, talking to parents and community leaders and writing stories about the most important matters in the education world. During the Covid-19 pandemic, she wrote about how the crisis was affecting parents, teachers and students.

    • CSSW Spotlight
      NYU Latinx Project Features CSSW Director's Work

      Camp Jenner, CSSW Spotlight ImageThe NYU Latinx Project featured CSSW director, John Mckiernan-González's, work on  a century of epidemics and federal quarantines in the Texas-Mexico borderlands.  For the purpose of this intervenxion, Dr. Mckiernan-González featured the mobilization of domestic workers in Laredo during the 1903 yellow fever quarantine.

      View the full project on the Latinx Project website.

    • Audrey Goodman | Songlines: Following Joy Harjo’s Musical Route
      Brazos Hall | Wednesday, March 25, 2020 | 3:30 pm

      Adurey Goodman, Photo 2020Muskogee poet and musician Joy Harjo plays with many forms of song, blues, and jazz to imagine pathways through time, across space, and towards new futures. This talk considers how Harjo’s musical sources -- from the jazz beats of Gwendolyn Brooks’s poetry to the soaring improvisations of Charlie Parker’s saxophone and the rhythms of Muskogee stomp dance – inspire her to create patterns of call and response, as well as dynamic layers of sound, story, and imagery.

    • Sarah Coleman | To Reward the Wrong Way Is Not the American Way: Immigrants’ Rights and the Battle over Welfare in the 90s
      Brazos Hall | Wednesday, March 11, 2020 | 12:00 pm

      Coleman Lecture Image This presentation focuses on a broad shift in immigrants’ rights and welfare policy in the 1990s. In the GOP, conservatives—including the newly elected Speaker of the House Newt Gingrich—used Proposition 187 in the “Contract with America” and more broadly harness the ballot initiative’s electoral popularity to push the Republican Party toward a restrictionist immigration policy. Within the Clinton White House, concerns about California in the 1996 presidential election grew after seeing Proposition 187, giving strength to those pushing centrist ideas of welfare reform and immigration restriction. These shifts enabled the 1996 Welfare Reform Act, which included provisions that removed millions of authorized immigrants from Supplemental Security Income (SSI), food stamps and other programs. The welfare reform act signaled the emergence of a new period of immigration policy.

    • CSSW Spotlight
      William Jensen's Short Story in Stoneboat's Best of Decade Issue

      William Jensen’s “Camino Real,” which was originally published in 2014 and nominated for a Pushcart Prize, was reprinted in the latest issue of Stoneboat as part of their “best of the decade” edition. The story focuses on a nomadic father and son journeying through Texas while trying to maintain a sense of purpose.

      You can find the issue on Stoneboat's website.

    • CSSW Spotlight
      Infrarrealista Review Launch Party
      Saturday, March 7, 2020 | 8:00 pm - 2:00 am
      El Luchador Bar, 622 Roosevelt AVE, San Antonio, TX 78210

      Infrarrealista Review Event Flyer Image Infrarrealista Review is a literary journal that invites Texan writers who are outside of the literary tradition to reject binaries and take control over their narratives, and art, rather than accepting labels largely invited by white academics.

      We have borrowed the name Infrarrealistas from the avant-garde literary movement started in Mexico City.

      Our launch party is proud to present music by the San Antonio band Mirame. The group fuses indie rock with R&B and various Latin music genres and shed light on Culture, Environmentalism, and Love. Scholar of Tejanx music, DJ San Quilmas, will also play a special set. Anel H. Flores, also a San Antonio Native and author of the Queer Chicanx novel, Empanada, will be reading amongst other Texan writers and poets.

    • School Closures and Black Depopulation in Austin, Texas | Ricardo H. Lowe
      Thursday, February 13, 2020 | 12:30 pm | Brazos Hall

      Ricardo Lowe Photo, 2020This project explores the role of local public policy – in particular, school closing decisions – in displacing Austin African Americans from their homes and neighborhoods in the heart of Texas.

    • Brandy Hill, Ruby Longoria and Rebecca Jenson  at CIPX EventOn November 16, 2019, photographer and artist Will Wilson held a Critical Indigenous Photographic Exchange [CIPX] with members and allies of central Texas’ indigenous communities.  Dine’ artist Will Wilson started the CIPX as a direct counter to the centennial celebration of Edward S. Curtis’ compendium of Native American and indigenous subjects.

      Photography students Brandy Hill, Ruby Longoria and Rebecca Jenson hold a tintype they helped develop during a CIPX San Marcos workshop in November. 

      More about CIPX can be found on the CIPX news page.

    • CSSW Spotlight

      Center Director Interviewed by Radio Bilingue/ Linea Abierta

      CSSW Director,John Mckiernan-González, was recently interviewed by the national call-in show – Radio Bilingue/ Linea Abierta that interviewed me regarding epidemics, quarantines and xenophobia.  The interview can be found on the Radio Bilingue website.         

  • 2019 News and Events

    • This symposium takes the global phenomenon of modern slavery and trafficking, grounds it in the past and present of the Southwest and examines the ways that labor migration, immigration restriction, border violence, and economic inequality combine to produce the soil that can give rise to modern slavery.

      Please visit the Chasing Slavery homepage for presenters, schedules, and general information.


      • Ambassador Luis C.deBaca (ret.) | Chasing Slavery: Reflections from the Southwest


      • John Mckiernan-González | Center for the Study of the Southwest, Texas State University
      • Jessica R. Pliley | Department of History, Texas State University
    • Will Wilson | Auto-Immune Response
      November 18, 2019 | 12:30 pm | JCM 2121

      Photography from Will WilsonThe Auto-Immune Response series is an allegorical investigation of the extraordinarily rapid transformation of Indigenous lifeways, the dis-ease it has caused, and strategies of response that enable cultural survival. Will Wilson uses installations and photography to evoke the situation confronting indigenous communities and the world today.

    • Valentine From Borderlandia, Opening Reception | Andrea Muñoz Martinez
      Tuesday, September 24, 2019 | 11:00 am | Brazos Hall

      Painting from Borderlandia ExhibitThese paintings are inspired by the vast landscape of Uvalde, Texas and Piedras Negras, Mexico. This show is an invitation to contemplate the beauty that exists in a land where people negotiate their place, where people thrive and struggle, and where people resist the idea of unjust borders.

      Andrea Muñoz Martinez has an MFA in Studio Art from the University of California, Davis. Her work has been exhibited at the Santa Chiara Center in Castiglion Fiorentino, Italy, the John Nicholas Brown Center at Brown University, the Visual Art Center at The University of Texas at Austin, and the Nelson Gallery at the University of California, Davis.

    • Isabel Lozoya Wins Inaugural Aleyda Gonzalez Mckiernan Undergraduate Essay in Southwestern Studies

      Aleyda Gonzalez Mckiernan Undergraduate Essay in Southwestern Studies WinnerIsabel Lozoya’s essay, Anglo-American Ethnocentric Mis-Perceptions of Mexico in the First International Study of Sex Trafficking, 1924-1926, won the inaugural Aleyda Gonzalez Mckiernan Undergraduate Essay in Southwestern Studies. The committee found the essay noteworthy for its contribution to the study of the southwest, the quality of archival evidence, as well as the connection to ongoing politics at the U.S. Mexico border.

      More about the Essay as well as a brief interview can be found on the press release page

    • A Reading by Kali Fajardo-Anstine
      Thursday, April 25, 2019 | 6:00 pm | Brazos Hall

      Kali Fajardo-Anstine Photography, 2019Kali Fajardo-Anstine’s magnetic story collection breathes life into her Indigenous Latina characters and the land they inhabit. Set against the remarkable backdrop of Denver, Colorado–a place that is as fierce as it is exquisite–these women navigate the land the way they navigate their lives: with caution, grace, and quiet force.

    • CSSW Spotlight

      Joaquín Rivaya-Martínez On January 25, 2019, professor Joaquín Rivaya-Martínez from Texas State University´s History Department and Gerardo Lara Cisneros from the Centro de Investigaciones Históricas of the Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México (UNAM) led a seminar on Fronteras indígenas de América / Indigenous Borderlands of the Americas at the UNAM in Mexico City.  This event was an outgrowth of an earlier two-day symposium sponsored by the Center for the Study of the Southwest and the Department of History and held in San Marcos last April. Dr. Rivaya-Martínez and his collaborators aim to publish edited volumes highlighting the borderlands spaces native peoples carved for themselves within and at the edges of empires and nation-states in the Americas. The works will be available in Spanish and in English The Center is proud to aid this cross-border collaborative scholarly project.

    • Dr. Fey Yarbrough | Choctaw Confederates: The American Civil War in Indian Country
      Thursday, April 12, 2019 | 11:00 am | Flowers Hall 230

      Dr. Fay YarbroughThe American Civil War evokes images of white men, though now many acknowledge the participation of black soldiers. The Civil War was more than a rupture between Northern and Southern states and Americans over the issue of slavery; other regions and other groups were drawn into the dispute.  Several American Indian nations, including the Choctaw Nation, officially sided with the Confederacy during the Civil War.  This talk will approach a familiar topic, the American Civil War, from a less familiar vantage point by focusing on the Choctaw Nation and the experience of Choctaw soldiers fighting for the Confederacy in particular.

    • Dr. Michelle Torres | Supply Chains and Labor Exploitation
      Thursday, April 11, 2019 | 12:30 pm | Brazos Hall

      Dr. Melissa TorresDespite what we understand to be the abolition of slavery in the United States, trafficking of humans for the purposes of sex work and exploited labor has emerged as a major criminal and social justice issue, both in the United States and abroad. Dr. Torres has been advocating for a social justice and human rights lens on labor policies and researching the range of exploitation in labor markets and the intersection with vulnerable populations.

    • The American Dream in Vietnamese: A Book Talk by Nhi Lieu
      Wednesday, March 6, 2019 | 11:00 am | Brazos Hall

      Nhi LieuDisplaced from Viet Nam by war and politics and arriving as refugees to communities in Texas and California, Vietnamese artists and entrepreneurs built forms of popular culture that affirmed connections to a Viet Nam that was and to a cosmopolitan culture that would incorporate Vietnamese subjects as equal participants. Nhi Lieu’s pathbreaking work of history & cultural studies The American Dream in Vietnamese traces the ways Little Saigons, video productions and beauty queen competitions built community and challenged the demeaning and orientalist meanings associated with refugees in the United States.

    • Geneva M. Gano | Demasiada, y más que Demasiada: Sandra Cisneros on the Loose in San Antonio
      Thursday, February 28, 2019 | 12:30 pm | Flowers Hall 230

      Geneva GanoSandra Cisneros arrived in San Antonio in 1984 to work as the Literary Director at the Guadalupe Cultural Arts Center on San Antonio’s West Side. She only held that position for a year, but she made San Antonio her home for the next thirty years. This talk situates Sandra Cisneros’ poems from Loose Woman (1994) within the multidisciplinary, multilingual rasquache aesthetics of the fin-de-siecle arts scene in San Antonio’s West Side. Drawing on archival materials, interviews, and essays, Professor Dr. Geneva M. Gano will examine how Cis¬neros’ sexy, silly, and simultaneously sophisticated albures, adivinanzas and dichos resonate with the sly and politically infused art of her fellow San Antonians, Franco Mondini-Ruiz and Alejandro Diaz.

    • Deborah Paredez | Year of the Dog: Poetry as Feminist Lament
      February 25, 2019 | 11:00 am | The Wittliff Collections

      Deborah Paredez: Year of the Dog: Poetry as Feminist LamentThis public lecture will include a reading from my forthcoming poetry book, YEAR OF THE DOG (Boa Editions 2020), a Latina chronicle of the Vietnam War era, and a discussion of the tradition and function of feminist elegy during times of disaster and atrocity.  Drawing from the mythic Greek figure of Hecuba, who committed herself so fully to her grief in response to the horrors of war that she was transformed into a howling dog, I explore how female and feminist figures have catalyzed transformations in the private and public realms as a result of their acts of lamentation.

    • Check out this new interactive site, Mapping the Nation, which explores early American cartography. 

  • 2017 News and Events

    • The Art of Gentrification | A Book Talk by Cary Cordova
      Monday, November 27, 2017 | 2:00 pm | TMH 201

      The Heart of the MissionSan Francisco has been home to political and cultural movements that have reshaped America. Cary Cordova’s The Heart of the Mission: Latino Art and Politics in San Francisco explores how Latina/o artists, residents and migrants both, produced art that spoke to their vision of themselves, their city, their transnational social movements, to the wealth-driven gentrification, and their American cultures.

      Learn more about her work.

    • Emiliano Zapata in American Memory | A Talk and Book Signing by Paul Hart
      Thursday, October 12, 2017 | 12:30 pm | Brazos Hall

      Zapata Book CoverThe talk explores the afterlife of Emiliano Zapata in North America, tracking the ways his life, his actions, and his myths inspired many movements and cultures across North America, from 1950s rural guerrillas to urban Chicana/os and from Agraristas to the current Zapatistas.

      Paul Hart is a Professor of History and Associate Director for the Center for International Studies at Texas State University. He is also the author of Bitter Harvest: The Social Transformation of Morelos, Mexico and the Origins of the Zapatista Revolution, 1840-1910 (2005).

    • Blue Texas: Back to the Future | A Reflection by Max Krochmal
      Wednesday, October 25, 2017 | 12:30-2:30 pm | Flowers Hall 230

      Blue Texas Book CoverBlue Texas is about the other Texas, a mid-twentieth-century hotbed of community organizing, liberal politics, and civil rights activism. At the ballot box and in the streets, Mexican Americans, African Americans and labor activists demanded not only integration but economic justice, labor rights, and real political power for all. And it worked, permanently changing the racial political order in Texas.

      In this talk, Max Krochmal goes back to the politics of community organizing in Jim Crow Texas to consider all of our futures in Texas after Trump and after Hurricane Harvey.


    • Fairy Tales for Truth and Justice | Exhibit
      On View - September 13 - December 13, 2017 | Opening Reception and Reading - September 13 | 12:00pm | Brazos Hall

      Fairy Tales for Truth and JusticeDeveloped through a one-year onsite artist-in-residence program at Grand Central Art Center in Santa Ana, California, SanTana’s Fairy Tales is a visual art installation, oral history, storytelling project initiated by artist/author Sarah Rafael García. The project integrates community-based narratives to create contemporary fairytales and fables that represent the history and stories of Mexican/Mexican-American residents of Santa Ana (inspired by the Grimm’s’ fairy tales).

    • Steve Schafer: The Border, book reading and panel
      Thursday, September 28, 2017 | Reading 5:30pm; Panel Discussion 6pm | The Wittliff Collections

      Steve Schafer, The BorderSteve Schafer visits Texas State University to read from his new book, The Border, a novel about four Mexican teenagers who flee to the U.S. through the scorching Sonoran Desert after getting caught in the cross fire of the narco-violence along the U.S./Mexico border.  After the reading, a panel discussion entitled “Immigration and the Refugee Experience” will focus on the experiences and criminalization of immigrants with insights from Dr. Jose Coll (Director, School of Social Work at Texas State), Dr. Luis Torres (College of Social Work, University of Houston), Chief Benjamine “Carry” Huffman (Chief of Strategic Planning and Analysis Directorate at U.S. Border Patrol Headquarters), and Dr. John Mckiernen-Gonzalez (Director, Center for the Study of the Southwest).

    • All the Agents and Saints: Dispatches from the U.S. Borderlands
      A reading by Stephanie Elizondo Griest
      Thursday, September 7, 2017 | 11:00am – 12:20pm | The Wittliff Collections

      Agents and SaintsAfter a decade of chasing stories around the globe, intrepid travel writer Stephanie Elizondo Griest followed the magnetic pull home—only to discover that her native South Texas had been radically transformed in her absence. Ravaged by drug wars and barricaded by an eighteen-foot steel wall, her ancestral land had become the nation’s foremost crossing ground for undocumented workers, many of whom perished along the way.  In All the Agents and Saints, Elizondo Griest weaves seven years of stories into a meditation on the existential impact of international borderlines by illuminating the spaces in between and the people who live there.

    • William Jensen: Cities of Men
      April 27, 2017 | 5:30 pm Reception | 6:00 pm Reading | Brazos Hall

      William Jensen Cities of MenJoin the Center for the Study of the Southwest in celebrating the release of their own William Jensen's first novel, Cities of Men.  A book signing with advanced copies of Cities of Men will follow the reading. 

      In 1987, twelve-year-old Cooper Balsam's mother, Arden, disappears without a trace. As days pass, Cooper and his father search for the most important woman in their lives. From the hills of Southern California, to the deserts of Arizona, and down to the beaches of Mexico, the father and son will look for someone who may not want to be found for reasons they don't yet understand.

    • Tim Z. Hernandez: And They Will Call You
      April 6, 2017 | 12:30 pm. in Brazos Hall | 5:30 pm at the Wittliff Collections

      And They Will Call YouTim Z. Hernandez shares the harrowing account of “the worst airplane disaster in California’s history,” which claimed the lives of thirty-two passengers, including twenty-eight Mexican citizens—farmworkers who were being deported by the U.S. government. Outraged that media reports omitted only the names of the Mexican passengers, American folk icon Woody Guthrie penned a poem that went on to become one of the most important protest songs of the twentieth century, “Plane Wreck at Los Gatos (Deportee).” Combining years of painstaking investigative research and masterful storytelling, Hernandez’ weaves a captivating narrative from testimony, historical records, and eyewitness accounts, reconstructing the incident and the lives behind the legendary song.

    • Landscapes, Peoples, and Institutions: Constructing the Borderlands
      An International Symposium Sponsored by the Center for the Study of the Southwest

      Saturday, April 1, 2017 | 9:30 am – 5 pm | Flowers Hall 230

      Constructing the BorderlandsDevelopments along US-Mexico Borderlands in the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries had long-lasting effects and contributed decisively to give the region its current configuration. This symposium offers a fresh look at some of the ways in which peoples of diverse ethnic backgrounds and geographical origins adapted to the borderlands environment and to one another during that period.

      English Program Español
    • A Fresh Look at the Fort Parker Raid of 1836
      Wednesday, March 29 | 3:30 p.m. | Brazos Hall

      Dr. Daniel GeloTexas was an independent Republic for just a few years, between 1836 and 1846. This relatively short time span was, however, particularly prolific in producing frontier myths, heroes, and antiheroes, some of which have resisted the test of time surprisingly well. The Comanche Indians of the southern plains are doubtlessly one of the most enduring icons of that mythical legacy. On May 19, 1836, an Indian raid on Fort Parker, in today’s Limestone County, Texas, resulted in the killing and capture of several Anglo settlers, including Cynthia Ann Parker –future mother of the famous Comanche leader Quanah. This fabled incident has become one of the foundational myths of the Texas Republic. Dr. Gelo’s careful scrutiny of eyewitness accounts, and his understanding of indigenous geopolitical strategies at the time will reveal what actually happened at Fort Paker, the exact identity of the attackers, and what their motivations were, redressing both the standard account of the raid and some recent interpretations.

    • An Anthology of Poetry, Short Fiction, and Nonfiction Reading
      Brazos Hall | March 2, 2017 | 12:30 pm

      Texas Weather PosterPublished by Lamar University Press, Texas Weather: An Anthology of Poetry, Short Fiction, and Nonfiction is a collection of works that “celebrates with intimate detail and incredible scope why Texans are so fascinated with, wary of, confounded by, and thankful for their weather.” Edited by Laurence Musgrove and Terry Dalrymple, this anthology includes an amazing array of 59 writers. Of these writers and editors, Jason Harris, Vanessa Johnson, Laurence Musgrove, Charles Taylor, and Steve Wilson will share their work. William Jensen will moderate the discussion panel to follow.

      Book signing to follow.

    • A Land without Borders: The Comanche Range
      An exhibit about Comanche geography and adaptation to the land

      On view February 7 – May 10, 2017

      Comanche Exhibit

      Exhibit Opening Reception: Tuesday, February 7

      Center for the Study of the Southwest

      Brazos Hall, 5:00-6:00 p.m.

      Texas State University, San Marcos, TX

    • Book Talk by Andrés Reséndez on The Other Slavery: Indian Enslavement in North America
      Thursday, February 16, 2017 | Flowers Hall 230 | 12:30 p.m.

      Other SlaveryProf. Andrés Reséndez’s presentation argues that native enslavement and slave raids are central to the settlement and economic growth of North America. His book, The Other Slavery, is the first broad history of the long co-existence of Indian enslavement, depopulation, chattel slavery and abolition in the West from the 1500s to the 1900s.

    • Editorial Fellowship, Center for the Study of the Southwest

      The Center for the Study of the Southwest (CSSW), announces the availability of a Research Assistant position to serve as Editorial Fellow at the Center during the 2017-2018 academic year (renewable based on evaluation of first year’s work). The Editorial Fellow will assist the CSSW staff in production of Texas Books in Review (TBR), Southwestern American Literature (SAL), and Sound Historian. Related duties include text and graphics layout and copyediting on all journals, and book review support and mail-out supervision on TBR and SAL, with other duties as assigned. The fellow is also expected to carry out one personal research project on a self-chosen topic related to the region.

      The Fellowship consists of an RA position (nine-month appointment at $9,855) plus a tuition scholarship of $1,500 per semester and some support for research and conference travel.

      Visit our Editorial Fellowship Page for more information.

  • 2016 News and Events

    • Marc Simmons PaintingMarc Simmons: Southwestern Treasure from the Maverick Historian

      On exhibit through December 16, 2016

    • Dr. de la Teja Receives Presidio La Bahia AwardCSSW director Frank de la Teja was in Goliad on December 3 to receive the 2016 Presidio La Bahía Award for his collection of essays Faces of Béxar: Early San Antonio and Texas, published by Texas A&M University Press. The award is given by the Sons of the Republic of Texas “for outstanding contribution in the field of the Spanish Colonial Period of Texas History.”

    • The Southwest in Film Series
      La Bamba
      Thursday, October 20 | 7:00 pm | Brazos Hall

      La BambaJoin us for a free screening of La Bamba, the film based on the life of Richard Steven Valenzuela a.k.a Ritchie Valens. This second collaboration with  the San Marcos Cinema Club will be another unforgettable event. We’re excited to have Texas State’s Ritmo Latino Dance Company to start the night off with a special dance performance!

    • Frank de la Teja was interviewed for a segment, “Hispanic in Texas,” part of a BBC World Service Business Daily series on the fortunes of the rapidly expanding Hispanic and Latino community. He commented regarding historical perspectives on immigration to the Lone Star State. Hear the whole segment here:

    • Black Theater in Texas: Stages of Struggle and Celebration
      Opening Reception: Monday, October 17th | Time: 5:00 pm | Brazos Hall

      BTTThis exhibition highlights the extensive groundbreaking research developed during the production of two new historically and artistically related publications written by Dr. Sandra Mayo and Dr. Elvin Holt. 

      The exhibit will run through December 15, 2016.

    • CSSW director Frank de la Teja was one of a handful of historians of Texas asked by Austin public radio station KUT to talk about how a 1950s textbook presented the state’s history to schoolchildren.  Listen to the segment here:

    • International ColloquiumSomewhere in the Southwest

      Call for papers for the 7th International Colloquium on Northeastern Mexico and Texas meeting to be held October 19-21, 2016, in Monterrey, Nuevo Leon.

    • The Southwest in Film Series
      Monsters and Motels: Frontier Horror and the 21st Century

      Thursday, October 13 | 6:45pm | Alkek Teaching Theater

      From Dusk Till DawnJoin us for “Monsters and Motels: Frontier Horror and the 21st Century” presented by Dr. Monica Montelongo Flores. A screening of From Dusk til Dawn to follow.

    • Building Bridges, Not Walls
      Tuesday, Oct. 11, 2016 | Wittliff Collections, Alkek Library 7th Floor
      Reception: 5:30pm | Presentation: 5:45pm | Book Signing: 6:30pm

      Building  Bridges, Not WallsJoin us for a conversation with scholar and author, John Francis Burke.  Scholar and author of political science and religious studies, Dr. Burke currently teaches at Trinity University, and is the author of Building Bridges, Not Walls: Nourishing Divers Cultures in Faith and Mestizo Democracy: The Politics of Crossing Borders.

    • The Southwest in Film Series
      Free Screening of Selena

      September 15, 2016 | Cuauhtemoc Hall, 1100 Patton Street | 6:00 pm

      SelenaPlease join us a for a special free screening of SELENA at the historic Cuauhtemoc Hall, where the legendary Tejano legend performed. Timed w/ Fiestas Patrias (Independence Day in Mexico), the SELENA screening will feature free pizza, live accordion music, and a raffle.

      Also, winners of the Selena essay contest -- in the elementary, middle & high school levels -- will be invited to read their original writings, reflecting on the words of Selena concerning the value of learning a second language & embracing one’s cultural origins:
      “I feel very proud to be Mexican. I didn’t have the opportunity to learn Spanish when I was a girl, but it’s never too late to get in touch with your roots.”

    • Texas IdentitiesIn January 2015 the center hosted a symposium that brought back to campus MA alumni from the Department of History, all of whom work on Texas history. That gathering led to a collection of essays, Texan Identities: Moving beyond Myth, Memory, and Fallacy in Texas History, published by the University of North Texas Press with the generous support Texas State University. This is the second collaboration of this type, following the 2014 symposium “Lone Star Unionism and Dissent” that led to the University of Oklahoma Press collection, Lone Star Unionism, Dissent, and Resistance: Other Sides of Civil War Texas.

    • Bless Me, Ultima

      Still Image from Bless Me, Ultima MovieBless Me, Ultima, a film by Carl Franklin based on the Rudolfo Anaya’s bestselling novel will be screened at the Alkek Teaching Theatre. The film will be accompanied by speaker Dr. Gabriel Meléndez, Distinguished Professor of American Studies at the University of New Mexico.

      September 8, 2016 | Alkek Teaching Theatre

    • The Center for the Study of the Southwest (CSSW), announces the availability of a Research Assistant position to serve as Editorial Fellow at the Center during the 2016-2017 academic year.  It is open to anyone working on a Master’s degree at Texas State, with strong writing and editing skills and an interest in the Southwest. The Editorial Fellow will assist the CSSW staff in production of Texas Books in Review (TBR), Southwestern American Literature (SAL), Sound Historian, and Journal of Texas Music History.

      The Fellowship consists of an RA position (nine-month appointment at $9,855) plus a tuition scholarship of $1,500 per semester and some support for research and conference travel.

      Visit our Editorial Fellowship Page for more information. 

    • The Head of Joaquin Murrieta

      The Head of Joaquin MurrietaJohn J. Valadez will be screening and discussing his documentary, The Head of Joaquin Murrieta, in which the author chronicles his search for the remains of Joaquin Murrieta, a legendary Mexican outlaw.

      September 22, 2016 | UCM | 11 a.m.

    • Call for Papers
      “The Annual University of Texas at El Paso Borderlands History Conference”

      Borderlands ConferenceShifting Borders: Gender, Family, and Community
      February 10-11, 2017, El Paso, Texas
      Submission deadline: September 16, 2016
      Presented by the UTEP Department of History

    • Road to Abilene
      Summer 2016 Exhibit

      Road to AbileneThe photos in this exhibit were taken by Lawton Cook, a recent graduate of the MFA program at Texas State, in preparation for writing his thesis--a novel that looks at the effects of urbanization on rural life in Texas.

    • Ricardo Ainslie: The Mark of War
      October 5, 2016 | 7:00 p.m. | Alkek Teaching Theater

      Ricardo Ainslie, 2016

      Ricardo Ainslie is nearing completion of a documentary film, The Mark of War, in which he chronicles the experiences of seven men who fought in the Vietnam War. He will be screening a rough cut of the film and will discuss the documentary process as well as what he has learned about the impact of war on the lives of the individuals who endure it.

    • Vaqueros, Cowboys, and Cowgirls: Texas Cattle Trails to the World
      History Symposium | Fort Worth Library | April 2, 2016 | 10:30 am–4 pm

      Vaqueros, Cowboys, and Cowgirls: Texas Cattle Trails to the World Fort Worth Public LibraryJoin historians Frank de la Teja, Byron Price, Joyce Roach, and Richard Slatta for a look at cattle trail history in Texas and around the world. To request tickets, visit the Fort Worth Library Lonesome Dove Trail page.

      Visit  Lonesome Dove Event Page to view the presentations.

    • CSSW Photography ExhibitConducted over several years, the project, led by Ana M. Juárez (Department of Anthropology), involved collaboration between students, faculty and others at Texas State University, local agencies and institutions, and most importantly the local Mexican American community who generously shared the stories of their lives.

      An opening reception will be held Tuesday, February 16 in Brazos Hall, 5:00pm - 6:30 pm.

      Visit the Sacred Spaces Event Page for more information.

    • GIANT Movie PosterThe Center for the Study of the Southwest presents Children of GIANT, a "story of the people who were there, many of them children, who witnessed the making of GIANT, not knowing that it would become a lasting chronicle of the very lives they were living in that summer of 1955." Filmmaker, Hector Galán, will lead a discussion following the film.

      April 5, 2016 | LBJ Student Center Teaching Theater
      5:30pm Reception | 6:00 pm Program

      Visit the GIANT Event Page for more information

    • Opportunity and Adaptation across the US-Mexico Borderlands
      February 27, 2016 | 9:30am - 4:30pm | Flowers Hall, Room 230

      us-mexico borderlands

      International borders are the (often invisible) boundaries where the distinct political jurisdictions, laws, and cultural traditions of two adjacent countries supposedly end. In practice, however, borderlands are spaces where political jurisdictions are often ignored, laws are difficult to enforce, and cultural traditions merge, which creates challenges and opportunities for the people and the authorities on either side of the border, particularly when the border shifts. This symposium explores some of the ways in which the residents of the US-Mexico Borderlands have adapted to the changing circumstances of the frontier over the last two centuries. Presenters will discuss how interethnic cooperation and marriage, the legal and illegal movement of people and goods, labor unionism, and other strategies have permitted border dwellers to overcome the hardships and exploitation of border life, and, in some cases, to thrive.

      Symposium schedule.

    • Arcadia: The New ChicanaThe Center for the Study of the Southwest invites you to attend Arcadia: The New Chican@.  This event hosts writers Ito Romo, Luke Villafranca, Octavio Quintanilla, and Sarah Cortez, and artist Vincent Valdez, all of whom are published in the upcoming issue of Arcadia Magazine. Arcadia welcomes eclectic art and literature "regardless of its origin…that speaks to and moves the heart and the head, regardless of form, medium, or place of birth." This special issue honors Mexican and Mexican American heritage through art, poetry, and prose.  We hope you join us as we celebrate the shared stories of the borderlands in the twenty-first century.

      February 11, 2016 | Brazos Hall
      12:00 pm reception | 12:30 pm program

      Visit the Arcadia Event Page for full details.

    • Tino Villanueva, 2016Join us for a reading and conversation with Tino Villanueva. Dr. Villanueva has had a diversity of work experiences before his formal college education, ranging from migrant worker to assembly-line construction of furniture here in San Marcos, where he was born and raised.

      April 12, 2016 | Reception 5:30 |  Program 6 pm

      Centro Cultural Hispano de San Marcos (211 Lee Street)

      Visit the Villanueva Event Page for more information.

    • At a Crossroads: The Study of the Southwest in the New Millennium
      Thursday, February 16, 2016 | Brazos Hall | 3:30 pm, light refreshments

      At a Crossroads

      A dialogue on politics, culture, migration, war, the state, and slavery: How can experiences in the Southwest illuminate our understanding of American history?  Visit the event page full information.

      Photo by Russell Contreras, Sunland Park, NM

    • The Mexican Revolution on the U.S. Border
      Wednesday, February 15, 2016 | Flowers Hall 230 | Doors open at 5:30 pm, light refreshments

      Mexican Revolution on the borderDr. Paul Hart serves as moderator for a special panel exploring the impact of the Mexican Revolution on U.S. immigrant and ethnic communities in the Southwest. Dr. Andrew Urban explores the plight of Chinese immigrants who worked for Gen. John Pershing’s Punitive Expedition, and Dr. Raúl Ramos examines the roles played by Americans of Mexican heritage in the civil war in their ancestral homeland.

      Visit the event page for more information.

    • Severo Perez, 2016Somewhere in the Southwest

      Wittliff Collections highlights the work of the Center for the Study of the Southwest Artist in Residence, Severo Perez.

    • Octavio Pimentel Event Image, 2016Octavio Pimentel

      Reads from his new book

      Historias de Éxito within Mexican Communities: Silenced Voices

      January 27, 2016 | 3:00 p.m. reception
      Comal, Room 116 | 3:30 p.m. reading

      Visit the Pimentel Event Page for more information

  • 2014 News and Events

    • The Center for the Study of the Southwest  at Texas State University hosted the 6th International Colloquium on Northeastern Mexico and Texas at the university campus in San Marcos, November 20-22, 2014.

      Visit the Colloquium Site for more information.

    • Larry ThomasThe Center congratulates 2008 Texas Poet Laureate Larry D. Thomas on his selection as first finalist for the 2014 Spur Award for "Best Western Poem." Thomas's honored poem, "Coyanosa," appeared in the Spring 2013 issue of Southwestern American Literature, which is published by the Center.
      During the Western Writers of America's annual convention in Sacramento this June, Thomas will be recognized at the Spur Award Finalist luncheon and SAL will receive a finalist citation certificate.

    • Latinos in Sports in the Southwest
      Fall 2014

      Latinos in SportsLatinos and Sports in the Southwest explores the participation of Latinos in sports in the Southwestern borderlands. The presentation series is complemented by an exhibit of photographs in Brazos Hall portraying Latino participation in Texas State University’s sports programs.

    • Latino Filmmaker Named First CSSW Artist-in-Residence

      Artist in ResidenceThe Center for the Study of the Southwest announced today filmmaker John J. Valadez as its inaugural Artist-In-Residence. During his tenure, Valadez will create a companion book for his landmark PBS film “The Longoria Affair.”

    • The Southwest is both an area of study and a natural organizational region within which institutions have a clear interest in the Hispanic world broadly. The Spanish colonial legacy in the region, encompassing social, cultural, economic, and geographic characteristics, requires students of the area during early historic times to engage the broader Spanish colonial experience. Consequently, the Center for the Study of the Southwest has joined the Department of History in making Texas State University a founding member of the Southwest Seminar. Dr. José Carlos de la Puente, assistant professor of History at Texas State, will represent the university as this year’s seminar, which will be hosted by Northern Arizona University in Flagstaff. The CSSW and Department of History are working together to bring the seminar to Texas State in the next year or two.

    • At The Alamo in San Antonio, Texas, Center for the Study of the Southwest director Frank de la Teja explains how the divering line between the United States and Mexico came to be drawn where it is. Visit NPR to listen to the interview.

    • Writing Beyond Borders
      April 4, 2014

      border_writersAt The Wittliff Collections, four distinguished authors discussed the past, present, and future of Latina/o literature—in a world where writers are frequently moving beyond traditional borders and boundaries.

    • Lone Star Unionism and Dissent
      April 5, 2014

      Civil War SymposiumPresented by Texas State’s Center for the Study of the Southwest and The Wittliff Collections, and funded in part by a grant from the Summerlee Foundation, this symposium explored the diversity of that opposition and challenged the myth of a monolithic pro-Confederate Texas. Hosted at The Wittliff Collections in Alkek Library on the campus of Texas State University, the symposium consisted of two morning sessions and one afternoon session of three presentations each, followed by a keynote address and a Q&A period.