Women Who Rock

Write to Rock :: Maylei Blackwell

Maylei Blackwell

As a professor of Chicana and Chicano Studies and Women’s Studies, Maylei Blackwell has claimed the "write to rock" through her work as an interdisciplinary scholar activist, oral historian, writer and teacher. Her books and articles draw and expand upon women of color theory, exploring questions of difference and intersectionality in Chicana feminism and grassroots, indigenous, and queer transnational social movements. Her oral histories scholarship compels us to listen closely to the voices of women and women of color whose influence has often been forgotten in conventional accounts of activism. Through her collaborative and community-based research and teaching, she has mentored a growing cohort of scholars and activists who continue to change the story of social movements through scholarship and action. In Blackwell’s own interview, she claims, "Punk rock saved my life."

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Professor Maylei Blackwell is an interdisciplinary scholar activist, oral historian, and author of ¡Chicana Power! Contested Histories of Feminism in the Chicano Movement, published with University of Texas Press. She is an Assistant Professor in the César E. Chávez Department of Chicana/o Studies and Women's Studies Department, and affiliated faculty in the American Indian Studies and Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender Studies.

Her research has two distinct, but interrelated trajectories that broadly analyze how women's social movements in the U.S. and Mexico are shaped by questions of difference ¬ factors such as race, indigeneity, class, sexuality or citizenship status ¬ and how these differences impact the possibilities and challenges of transnational organizing. Through collaborative and community-based research, Professor Blackwell has excavated genealogies of women of color feminism in the U.S. and accompanied indigenous women organizers in Mexico as well as feminist movements and sexual rights activists throughout Latin American. Her most recent research with farm worker women and indigenous migrants seeks to better understand new forms of grassroots transnationalism.

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