I never thought I would say this, but I look forward to going to a class and discussing the pervasive brutality that reinforces modern power structures. Capitalism, democracy, and the family are the social structures that have the most influence here in the States. One way that each of these systems of dominance are created and reinforced is through the violent subjugation of women in every aspect of our society. Going to class each week and discussing these problems and how people overcome these devastating events is refreshing. Through the anger, despair, and disgust, comes survival, hope, and possibilities to eradicating sexual violence from our society.
If you want to see the beginning of my work you can check out my proposal below. Let me know what you think. Criticism is how we become strong.
Sexual Violence and Identity in the Borderlands: An Airing Out of Historiographic Dirty Laundry
The intersections of race, class, and gender have been widely used as prisms to understand Mexican American identity formation in the U.S./ Mexico borderlands. Scholars in various fields have studied these dynamics and continuously problematized Mexican American identity formation. This essay will examine recent borderlands historiography from a feminist perspective and explicitly identify examples of sexual violence and terrorism. By pointing out instances of sexual violence and labeling them as terrorism I will show how identity formation among Mexican Americans should be further complicated . The importance of identifying and labeling sexual violence in borderlands historiography reveals another underlying aspect of identity formation because rape and the culture of fear produced by rape influences how people see themselves and their community. The same socio-political structure that has subjugated Mexican American people in the United States has capitalized on the perpetuation of sexual violence against them as well as among them. This study is critical to my future research as a borderlands scholar because the relationship of Mexico to the United States, when viewed under the lens of sexual violence and terrorism, may reveal insights to how Mexican American identities are still racialized, classed, and gendered.
Three questions will drive this essay. The first will ask how sexual violence is treated in recent borderlands historiography, and specifically what does that mean for current arguments surrounding Mexican American identity formation. My second research question asks where examples of sexual violence intersect with racial, class, and gender dynamics in borderlands spaces. Specifically, does sexual violence play a strong role in maintaining social, economic, and patriarchal dominance in these published works of the borderlands? Finally, what ways have scholars dealt with Mexican American resistance of sexual terrorism to refashion and reform their identities outside these dynamics? Finding answers to these questions in borderlands historiography may prove difficult, but they are crucial to forging a new understanding of borderlands identities.