Research

“Do work that matters; vale la pena.” -Gloria Anzaldúa

My research has a primary focus on the materiality of the body as a site for a formative philosophical discourse that initiates a new way of thinking bridging together an ethico-onto-epistemological way of pursuing scholarship and social change.  I give particular attention to the ways I believe the body is becoming a borderland matrix, materializing as queer, and I also move away from only imagining the body as a humanistic mode of beingness/becomingness.  Bodies are material realities that are fiercely networked in an interrelated manner whose horizon is always moving ,and bodies become in the displaced periphery.  With this, I am interested in ways in which the mestizaje body, understood as matter that is always becoming, becomes a radical moral agent.  I believe this is yet another critical *turn* in constructive philosophical theology.  There are implications for the ways we understand theologies of creation, teleology, and eschatology in analyzing the materiality of bodies.  This is also political work that seeks to actualize radical social change, so in the midst of identifying a radical theology, there is also elements of practice and praxis.

Becoming is a central theme in my work that points toward not only an ontology of becoming but also an ontology of difference and posthumanism that is inspired by the intersection of Gilles Deleuze, Deleuze & Guattari, and Gloria Anzaladúa.  This is an ontology of futurity that focuses on the metaphysics of interrelatedness, which is central to Gloria Anzaldúa’s thought.

Important to the work that I do on materiality and bodies is re-imagining of mestizaje; I call this ‘mestizaje 2.0.’  I extend both race and mestizaje to be discursive realities, de-biologizing race to allow it to yield a permeability for the application to the materiality of bodies.  Secondly, I extend queer theories as formidable material resources that shape both race and bodies in ontological and epistemological ways.  Third, I look to Rosi Braidotti, Gloria Anzaldúa, and Bracha L. Ettinger to develop a robust material ethics of interrelatedness that is always becoming.  Doing this also implicates new ways of understanding the subject and subjectivity that may, perhaps, move our thinking beyond the speciated divide (human/animal).

To do this work, I consider my own religious tradition of Christianity as a baptist with anabaptist leanings who was trained by Roman Catholic educators previous to college, my experience as a mixed raced person or queerMestizaje, and the reality that Latina/os who were forever changed by the signing of the Treaty of Guadalupe Hidalgo.  I look to Religion, specifically Christian Theology and Ethics, Critical Chicana/o | Latino/a Studies, Latino/a Religious Cultures, Queer Theories and Epistemologies, and Postcolonial Theories & Theology to do my research.

Additionally, I explore an interdisciplinary [or transdisciplinary] approach to critical analysis within the Social Sciences and imagine theology and ethics as part of a philosophical and critical theory inquiry, not a confessional moment that ends as stabilized existing normativities.  I seek to weave queer feminist theories, theories of sexual difference, critical & comparative identity and race theories, and critical social theories into my writing.  I find the interdisciplinary approach to research and reflection critical to conversations regarding ethics, social change and justice for all persons and things.

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