April 30, 2023

Chicana/x and Latina/X Feminisms: PostPod + Citations

Chicana/x and Latina/X Feminisms: PostPod + Citations

Alyssa: [00:00:00] Hello everybody and welcome to the Women of Ambition podcast. I'm your host, Alyssa Calder Hulme, and today we're gonna do something that we haven't done for a little while now, and that is a PostPod, and this is where we. Look at...

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[00:00:00] Hello everybody and welcome to the Women of Ambition podcast. I'm your host, Alyssa Calder Hulme, and today we're gonna do something that we haven't done for a little while now, and that is a PostPod, and this is where we. Look at the last podcast that got published and digested a little bit, talk about it, contextualize some things.

 We had such a fantastic time tracking together, Natalie and I, and there just really wasn't time to dig into some of the more complex ideas and some of the sources that we were drawing on, or, or I was drawing on really in my questioning. So I wanted to share some of those today because these authors and these people that we're drawing from, especially in looking at Latina ambition, are really incredible Chicano feminists.

 That I've really enjoyed learning and studying with. So I'm gonna share some of those citations today and discuss a little bit more about some of the vocabulary and some of the themes that are used there, because I think it's useful and really helpful to hear the voices [00:01:00] of the people that are coming up with these theories and these ideas to describe the experience of so many people.

So here's a little synopsis of. Four different texts that have been really helpful for me. Okay.

So the first text that I wanna look at is called Methodology of the Oppressed, and that's by Chela Sandoval. And this is a really interesting mapping that Sandoval does of us feminism's feminists of color, and she shows this differential mode of consciousness that she shows is located in these women of color and that their unique positions and perspectives and abilities and experiences as women of color in the United States gives them this really unique angle and existence in these in-between spaces. And she says that the, these perspectives are so essential and she, and she shows it like this is.

She proves it in this essay. It's really fantastic. But we need these [00:02:00] perspectives of women of color because they live in these liminal spaces and they, out of necessity and out of creativity and out of survival, end up what, this is a quote, weaving between and among oppositional idol ideologies. And it's.

I love that concept and that like visual of weaving in-between spaces and things to kind of create like a new tapestry of color and meaning and blending things together that other people who don't have that perspective wouldn't be able to do and create. And it's a very heavy text. Like it, it's a very technical, but it's really it felt really inspiring to me because it's showing how.

Feminism can be done with an intersectional lens and how it can be a place of creation and insight and hope in a way that like white feminisms in the United States really can't do.[00:03:00] It really does take all of us to have quality and to have. You know, have everybody's needs met. We have to have all the different perspectives and these feminists, women of color, how this really unique perspective is being some of the most disenfranchised populations in the United States, where their ideas and their perspectives are really going to make it better for everybody.

 The next text that I wanna look at is called Monstrosity in Everyday Life, Theories in Flesh and Transformational Politics. And that's written by Robert, Robert Gutierrez-Perez. And this is another one of these really cool concepts nepantleras. And remember, my accent is awful. I haven't spoken Spanish out loud in like a decade.

 They are the people that dwell in that in between space. And Robert goes into detail about how they mediate the borderlands and the borderlands is kind of the topic of our [00:04:00] last episode with Natalie. So. Mediate the borderlands, and that is in the physical spaces that they live in. And having borders of countries cross through spaces where people are living and people are forced to literally cross a border.

 But also that metaphorical border that we talked about that is navigating different spaces. And then, Robert goes into de detail about how nepantleras have to live with contradiction and how they choose to be bridge makers in a way that is subversive. It's a, it's a method for survival, but it's also a way that deconstructs a lot of the imposed limits of, of like western colonization capitalism, all these things that try and put people in a box.

And nepantleras are people that hold intersectional identities. Can cross these different spaces and can [00:05:00] be viewed as monsters for doing this crossing spaces, but can take that identity to then make it something that is empowering and transformative. And a way that, again, is that like subversive method for existing in the world and, and making it better.

Okay, the next text, we're gonna go through these real quick cuz they're so great. And they are, they are dense, but I really think it's important to share them. This is Borderlands/ La Frontera: the New Mestiza, and it's by Gloria Anzaldúa, who is another fantastic Latina feminist author. Highly, highly recommend And in this text Anzaldúa talks about borderland dwellers and how they hone what we referenced in the podcast as a sixth sense, and she calls it La Facultad.

 And that is that awareness of the social context that [00:06:00] develops throughout the life of Latina women as a means of self-preservation. And. In that process, she goes into kind of the, the darker side of that. We've, we talked a lot about the positive side of that with Natalie. The humor, the creativity, the bonding, the community B making that can be there.

Anzaldua talks though about what can be lost in that cultivation cuz it is kind of a forced cultivation. I would almost say the way that the Anzaldua talks about it at least is kind of like a, a trauma response is how I would describe it. So Anzaldua says that what is lost in the cultivation of lafa is our innocence, our knowing ways, and our safe and easy ignorance.

And so having to develop that sixth sense, that awareness is what keeps in, in Anzaldua eyes Latinas safe and gives them that superpower that we talked about. But it also comes at a cost that can be really heavy [00:07:00] but. As we heard in our last episode, it can be a place of hope and creation and of new thoughts, and that's where this idea of US women of color, feminisms being able to come in and show us things that maybe I wouldn't be able to see based on my social location and my level of privilege. And so it can be this really positive building thing and it can also be this really, really heavy thing. And I think what Natalie was saying is that's where community comes in.

That's really, really important, especially in the Latinx community. Having each other and having people that can kind of lean on each other with that. And that's where. In terms of like ambition, because this is, is a podcast on ambition. All of those different social locations and identities and like abilities can.

Come together in really beautiful ways, but they can also be locations of disenfranchisement and struggle and imposed and [00:08:00] contradictory expectations and can then pose more obstacles in maybe presenting. A way that is considered to be more masculine or to be outside of the cultural norm or to be transgressive of crossing those borderlands if you consider gender stereotypes and gender roles, and if you're crossing that one way or another you're gonna be.

It's gonna be rough. There's gonna be resistance to that. And it can also be this place of incredible creation and growth. The last text I wanna talk about, we didn't really go into it a lot, but we kind of referenced this population, and I'm still kind of chewing with this idea because there is a lot of.

Disagreement about this term and it, it's not, not necessarily a new term, but it's still being discussed. Next text I wanna look at is Chicana Latina Testimonios Mapping the Methodological Pedagogical and Political [00:09:00] political mouthful. And that is by Dolores Delgado Bernal. Rebecca Burciaga, Judith Flores Carmona. And this was published in 2017 and it's a response to another author Spivak, who coined the term subaltern. And that Subaltern is one who the dominant powers have rendered as a person who doesn't matter, isn't worth listening to. And as they're not being understood, one who does not have a platform to speak from.

And originally, Spivak said that the subaltern are these people that cannot be heard or really. My interpretation is that they're saying things all the time, but the dominant society, the people with power are not listening. So these people who are not being heard and understood. Are stuck until they are given a platform.

And even that term given is problematic until they can make their voice heard, they are disenfranchised. But what Bernal et al., all those [00:10:00] authors, that's what at all means. What all they responded with is that even when Chicana and Latina scholars are in the academia, are in the public eye, that because of their social location that they are continually not understood and not listened to and not heard Thus, They are still subaltern and even when they technically have a platform or they are published or whatever it is, and so it's another example of this like really complex identity of not being seen, not being heard, not being taken seriously.

Maybe it is because people don't know what to do with you because you inhabit multiple locations or maybe just what you're saying. Comes from such a unique positionality, and it is looking in places that most people aren't seeing that we don't want to hear. And so these are some of the, the different ideas I've been thinking with and looking at the really innovative ways that Chicana feminists and Latinas are [00:11:00] showing up in the world and exhibiting ambition in ways that maybe the rest of us.

Aren't ready for. And you know what? We need to get ready for it. And we need to be supporting everybody who wants to be doing awesome things, even if it's in ways that are surprising to us. Even if it, they are weaving things together in ways that we don't expect, even if they're bringing a perspective to the surface that has been in the shadows for our, our own lived experience.

 And those, those borderland dwellers that can live with contradiction and can be the bridge makers are the people that make. Subaltern people legible and create themselves as legible people. And so when we are doing whatever work we're doing, whether it's in the government, whether it's in our homes, in our communities we need to be listening to all people and to be valuing their experiences, even if they're different than our own, even if they are bringing ideas to the table that like seem totally outta left field.

To use a, a baseball analogy here [00:12:00] a very American sport. Maybe it's not outta left field. Maybe it's just based on our social position and our social context. So those are some people to go read with and to think with and to consider. Especially if you want to widen your lens. I'm trying to widen my lens to understand ambition, to understand.

 Who am I not listening to? Who am I not thinking with? So those are some great places to go. I highly recommend. So we're gonna wrap this up as our post pods go, they're pretty short. So just thanks for listening. This is Women of Ambition podcast. I am your host, Alyssa Calder Hulme. And I will again, put the transcription up here.

I'm putting it in the show description, so you should be able to see that within your app while listening. If you would like. If that's for some reason hard to read or the text is just too large or whatever it is, please feel free to reach out to [00:13:00] me. I'm happy to email out those those notes or add another layer to my website where maybe those transcripts are a little more legible and easy to find.

 But yeah, I, I strongly suggest each of those texts, they're so many incredible Latina authors out there. Latinx people who are writing and speaking and teaching and living in ways that we can all really learn from. So go check out the Latina ambition of weaving in liminal spaces and border crossings and speaking up when people don't wanna hear or don't know how to hear.

 Really some really incredible women out there. So hope you enjoyed this, and again, please let me know if those transcriptions are helpful and we'll see you again next time.[00:14:00]