Nicole Guidotti-Hernandez: Child-Citizen Subjects: From Dora the Explorer to Dream Activists

Thursday, February 7
4 pm
Comm 120

American Studies, University of Texas, Austin

The Latino/a child citizen subject has become the focal point for all sorts of discourses about citizenship, be they the figure of the Anchor Baby, Dora the Explorer as a potential illegal immigrant, the Dream Activists of Freedom University, or a newly emerging unprotected group, unaccompanied migrant children facing deportation proceedings. In this talk, I demonstrate the ways in which race, immigration status, social mobility, skin color, social class and gender determine whether or not a child is in fact deemed worthy of citizenship, worthy of being saved, and worthy of being incorporated into the nation. Larger media trends have made such Latinas/o child-citizen subjects increasingly visible in the last fifteen years as the U.S.-Mexico border is more militarized than ever.

Nicole Guidotti- Hernández is Associate Professor of American Studies and Associate Director of the Center for Mexican American Studies at the University of Texas. Her book Unspeakable Violence: Remapping U.S. and Mexican National Imaginaries was published by Duke University Press in 2011. She is currently working on two new books: ¡Santa Lucia! Contemporary Chicana and Latina Cultural Reinterpretations of Saint Iconographies and Red Devils and Railroads: Race, Gender and Capitalism in the Transnational Nineteenth Century Mexico Borderlands.

Presented as part of B/ordering Violence: Boundaries, Gender, Indigeneity in the Americas, a John E. Sawyer Seminar in Comparative Cultures generously funded by the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation and co-sponsored by the Latin American & Caribbean Studies program, the Jackson School of International Studies, the Simpson Center for the Humanities, and the Institute for the Study of Ethnicity, Race, & Sexuality (WISER). For more on the B/ordering Violence Seminar Series, visit

4 thoughts on “Nicole Guidotti-Hernandez: Child-Citizen Subjects: From Dora the Explorer to Dream Activists

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