702 S Wright Street
Urbana IL 61801
Sexuality and Gender; Race; Urban Sociology; Latino/a Studies; Political Economy; Resistance; Women of Color Feminisms; Queer of Color Theory; Intersectional Feminism; Transnationalism
My dissertation research centers Latinxs, primarily working-class femmes and women, living in greater Los Angeles and how they negotiate and resist marginalization in their everyday lives. More specifically, I examine how space in a gentrifying region is taken up, reimagined and created. In addition, I center practices such as DJing, rapping, art, vending, and online platforms that these people of color innovatively and differentially engage with to politically express themselves and create alternative knowledges and ways of living. I understand and highlight these practices and spaces using women of color feminisms, queer of color critique, and transnational feminisms as a framework. Rather than center Latinx culture, I focus on the political economy of Latinx life, i.e. the material and discursive structures of power that affect Latinxs’ everyday lives and embodied (material and psychic) experiences. While many of these counterspaces and creative practices are dismissed, I seek to show how they are critical to negotiating oppression and I argue for their recognition and legitimization as political expression. Despite the intermeshed sets of oppression that these femmes and women face within the US overall, specifically in LA, and within their own ethnic communities, this research highlights their quotidian ways of expressing and negotiating their issues that ultimately nurture their communities’ survival and solidarity.
M.A. Sociology, University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign
B.S. Anthropology and Sociology, California State Polytechnic University Pomona
Awards and Honors
Hernandez, Jessennya. 2021. “Foster Youth Perspectives: How Foster Youth Navigate and Mobilize Their Rights within the Foster Care System.” Humanity and Society. DOI: 10.1177/0160597621991546