Monday, November 30, 2009



Below is the announcement of a great event and the link to the pdf.

The Dec 3-6 events at the University of Arizona & El Rio Neighborhood
Center will be historic. It will bring together elders from throughout
the country, along with elders from AROMAS & Los Universitarios. This
gathering will permit my students in my Movimiento Ollin Movement
class (MAS 350) to present their research on Tucson’s/Arizona’s
Movimiento/Movement. They will present their work, both to elders and
to the public. Other students from the U of A and Raza Studies-Tucson
Unified School District students will also present. The idea behind
this is rooted in the idea of elder epistemology – that the knowledge
of our communities comes from elders and that students must return
that knowledge back to the elders and our communities.

Students will present on Dec 4 & 5, symposium-style, in front of
AROMAS or the abuelitos & abuelitas associated with the
Chicano/Hispano Centro on campus & Los Universitarios – a group active
on campus since the 1950s. Some will also present their research in
poetry, hip-hop, song and theater. Capping the event will be a 7:30 pm
rally on Sat. Dec 5 in support of Raza Studies – from kindergarten
through the proposed PhD at the U of A. Raza Studies remains under
attack nationwide, particularly in Arizona. Part of this rally will
include a concert by Aztlan Underground which has just released their
first CD in 8 years. Suggested donations are $10 students and $15 gen
adm. It will be $15 students at the door and $20 gen. adm. at the
door. See enclosed flyer for details.

All the transportation & housing has been covered for the invited out
of town elders. Quite a bit still needs to be raised to cover
honorariums, food, etc. Due to the economy, here is a creative way to
raise the needed funds. Please consider making a donation (from you or
your organization). Any amount is welcome. If you donate $50, Dr.
Patrisia Gonzales will make her book: The Mud People, available for
this donation. If you send $100, you will get The Mud People and a
historic book I wrote in 1984: Assault With a Deadly Weapon. It has
recently been reprinted. Whatever you can donate will help us put on
this historic event.

To contribute, make CHECK payable to: The UA Foundation, and mail it
to: Department of Mexican American & Raza Studies: Attn: Veronica
Peralta. Cesar Chavez Bldg., Room 208, PO BOX 210023 / Tucson, AZ
85721-0023. CREDIT CARD: Please send an email to Veronica Peralta at: for instructions. Pleas indicate if you
want the books.

All contributions are tax-deductible. For more info, write me at:
520-626-0824 or

* If you would like tickets for the Dec 5 Raza Studies Rally-Aztlan
Underground Concert, please contact MEChA directly at: Jessica: or Tiffany at:
Proceeds from the concert will go toward building the Dolores
Huerta-Cesar Chavez Arch, slated to be constructed in front of the
UA-Cesar Chavez building. My earlier books, The X in La Raza & Codex
Tamuanchan have been recently reprinted and have been donated to
UA-MEChA in their efforts to build the arch. Contact Jessica & Tiffany
above for further info.

Roberto Dr. Cintli Rodriguez
Assistant professor
Mexican American & Raza Studies-UA

Reposted from Frente de Mexicanos en Canada by request of Roberto Rodriguez

Sunday, November 22, 2009

Gear Up College Outreach

Sunnyside Field Trip to the University of Arizona

Dr. Roberto Rodriguez, a.k.a Dr. Cintli spoke to Mr. Siqueiro's junior U.S History class from Sunnyside High School. He showed a clip of his film Amoxtli san ce tojuan: we are one: nosotros somos uno, before handing out copies to members of the class and Mr. Siqueiros.

Instead of posting more pictures with very little in the way of context, I'm attempting to integrate a simple power point I put together from the day's events.

Click on this Link to the Power Point

Thanks to Darcy Felix & Dr. Rodriguez in Mexican American/Raza Studies Dept, as well as Faith Kurtyka, Nicole Esquivel, Mel Agostini, Melissa Rodriguez & friends for all of your help.

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

The Science-Fiction of Assimilation

"You will be assimilated"
In a discussion with Dr. Damian Baca, I brought up the metaphor of the Borg, the cyborg enemy on Star Trek that assimilates other groups, stripping them of their culture and identity and forcing them to change their way of life. The trope is one that has been used in passing among colleagues, but it felt poignant in 'the classroom is a violent place' mode of thinking about how the university can have the effect of imposing its value system and beliefs in much the same way that dominant hegemonic ideologies cover over the cultures of those it assimilates.

Monday, November 9, 2009

Unsettling Certainties

Why Does Racism Persist in the United States of America?
This evening Carlos Gallego facilitated an open forum panel discussion at the University of Arizona Poetry Center with members of the Humanities faculty.

Dr. Gallego showed this clip from the show "Community":

Gallego pointed out that victims of racism can be racist at the same time because racism is a way of thinking, a way of making sense of the world.

Dr. Wendy Theodore answered the question about the existence of racism through the examination of conversation we hear in public spaces, and from them we shouldn't be surprised why racism continues.
One out of the many interesting points that Dr. Theodore addressed was how African American students experience more racially identified after going through a higher learning.

Professor of American Indian Studies, Franci Washburn highlighted how women of color are victims of violence at higher rates than women in the majority who tend to receive the most news/media coverage. By the same token, Washburn explained that women of race rarely see justice, and rarely make the news.

Friday, November 6, 2009

Instant Academic Discourse--Just Add Water

Make Your Own Academic Sentence

I've got to give it to the new media practioners at the University of Chicago--they've created an academic sentence generator with drop-down menus that allow you to mix & match erudite phrases.

This artifact seems to speak to one of the fundamentals of new media that can simplify the inner workings of new media objects down to data bases. From the most obvious examples of search engine software to hardware object like iPod Nanos, the ability to store and search large data bases of information remains a constant in the evolution of technology.(the above image comes from a sketchy editing site called

The Chronicle of Higher Ed comments.

Thursday, November 5, 2009

Arizona Public Media

Corrido Field Day Video

Here's a video that PBS put together for the Corrido Field Day that Gear Up helped coordinate with the UA Poetry Center.


Wednesday, November 4, 2009

Mea culpa, hablo español

I Speak Spanish: Sorry About That

The header above comes from an article by Pilar Marrero, who writes for La Opinión. It was passed on to me by colleagues and it addresses some recent issues in the Southwest regarding the unfair treatment of Spanish speakers.

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

Lively Talk about the Comp Canon

Susan Miller at UA
Susan Miller spoke at the University of Arizona yesterday about the Norton Anthology of Composition Studies which she edited, emphasizing that the book should be viewed as selected readings. The book, she explained, functions as its own context for the articles that it includes, although she asked the writers to also provide a brief 'why I wrote this' statement before their contributions. Miller explained that many of those in the beginning of the collection had been her friends and had passed away, so she took it upon herself to give the explanations for their articles, based on discussions she'd had with them all over the years.

Miller explained that the difficultly of putting together selected texts has raised some criticisms of the canon and of her; she explained that she has felt that she has been spoken of as someone who is bloodless and six-feet under by some of the same critics in the field who attack anyone without a Rhet/Comp degree serving as writing program administrator (even though she points out her own PhD in Victorian literature, among many other famous names who came to the field before their were Rhet/Comp programs.)

One of the more controversial stances that Miller explained having taken was her decision to exclude 'Rhetoric' from the Norton collection as a part of her larger view of rhetoric as a mode of instruction, and not evolving much further than the discussions of Aristotle and Plato propagated by the Germans as a part of their re-writing of history. Miller explained that she has been verbally yelled at by rooms full of academic colleagues who do not share this view, but she said that she came to this understanding after having taught rhetoric for nearly 20 years and feeling that she wasn't sure what it was she was teaching them and that she was a part of perpetuating the myth of God having touched Athens, making it the 'cradle of knowledge'.

Miller felt she could no longer talk about rhetoric as though it hadn't been used, or understood by other civilizations. Politically, Miller argued, educators and administration would like to talk about rhetoric because they can conceptualize it as something they don't understand, whereas they can write off composition.