Week 9

I hope fall is in the air wherever you are. It’s still a little warm where I am but the increasing amount of pumpkin spiced things in our house is at least a small (though annoying) sign of the seasonal change underway.

This week we’re going to learn a little bit about an under-researched topic in Latinx history–the Central American “sanctuary” movement of the 1980s. In our class on MONDAY we’ll do so by discussing two readings: a 2009 article titled “The Sanctuary Movement and Central American Activism in Los Angeles” (12_Sanctuary.pdf) and a 1986 piece written by sanctuary activist Remmy Golden titled “Sanctuary and Women” (13_Golden.pdf). One of our classmates will guide our analysis.

On WEDNESDAY we’ll learn more about this history in a collective way. Your contributions to this will come from your third (and final) Mini-Story assignment.

This one requires you to find TWO newspaper sources (one news article and one editorial or opinion piece) on any aspect of the sanctuary movement using Historical Los Angeles Times and/or the Historical New York Times databases. Use the two newspaper sources you select to write a one-page (or two, if you must) mini-story showing us how you use and interpret sources to move a story forward. As in the past, don’t worry about a formal beginning or end. Just jump right in to the demonstrate the work.

As in the past, turn in the assignment by uploading it to our Drop Box on Sakai. For ease of downloading, please save your work as a single PDF named “LastName_Mini3.pdf” (in my case “SummersSandoval_Mini3.pdf”).

The assignment is due no later than Friday, October 23 at 11:59 p.m. Pacific time.

Week 8

This week we’ll discuss Latinx politics in the 1970s through two newer publications from two younger historians.

On MONDAY one of our colective will guide us in our discussion and analysis of chapter 7 from Jimmy Patiño’s 2017 book Raza Sí, Migra No: Chicano Movement Struggles for Immigrant Rights in San Diego (10_Patino.pdf).

On WEDNESDAY another colectiva member will lead us through “Hardhats May Be Misunderstood: The Boycott of Coors Beer and the Making of Gay-Labor-Chicana/o Alliances,” a 2020 article by Allyson P. Brantley (11_Brantley.pdf).

It’s a pretty straightforward week and a chance for us to dig deeper into these two works to better understand the history they present as well as analyze the ways the authors perform their craft.

We’ll see you then…

Week 7

Welcome to the month of October and welcome to week 7! We’ll spend the next four weeks learning more about the history of Latinx people in California, and as we do we’ll pay closer attention to how historians practice their craft. We’ll begin thinking about our semester project as we prepare ourselves for the last month of the semester (November) and the work we’ll do then.

On MONDAY we’ll spend some time with a book on the Chicano movement of the 1960s and 70s. The book is “¡Mi Raza Primero!” (My People First!): Nationalism, Identity, and Insurgency in the Chicano Movement in Los Angeles, 1966-1978 (2003), written by Ernesto Chávez. We’ll read chapters 2 and 3 (09_Chavez.pdf) and be guided in our discussion and analysis by two of our classmates.

On WEDNESDAY you’ll write and turn in your next Mini-Story assignment. For this second go-around with the assignment you’ll each be working from the same primary document–an oral history with one of the founders of the Brown Beret organization. The recording of the oral history can be found here. I’m asking you to listen to and work with the interview listed as “Session 3.”

Consult the feedback I gave you on our first Mini-Story assignment before you compose this one. Remember, the assignment is a chance for us to measure two kinds of historical practice: how we build story and how we use primary sources to do so. You’re building this narrative with a little more understanding of the larger story, since the Chávez reading is on related topics. The story you choose to tell, and the parts of the interview you choose to use, will tell us a lot about how you make meaning from (analyze) this complex past.

Just like last time, the assignment is due at the start of class. You can upload it to the Drop Box on Sakai or email it to me as an attachment. Either way, save save your work as a single PDF and named “lastname_Mini2.pdf” (in my case “SummersSandoval_Mini2.pdf”).

We’ll see you next time in class. Be well until then…

Week 6

We’re switching it up again this week as we return to our small seminar format to discuss two chapters from the book Migrant Longing.

As before, each of you will only attend ONE class meeting this week. Group C will meet on MONDAY and Group D will meet on WEDNESDAY. You can learn group assignment by visiting our Flipgrid discussion topic for the week.

Our reading is the introduction and chapter 1 in Miroslava Chávez-García’s Migrant Longing: Letter Writing Across the U.S.-Mexico Borderlands, 1900-1945 (08_ChavezGarcia_Longing.pdf). It’s a creative and ambitious project from a very talented historian. It should give us a lot to discuss. Come to your seminar ready to share your thoughts on the text and with questions you’d like to ask of your classmates.

Our Flipgrid prompt is called “2 Understandings and 1 Question.” It’s fairly straightforward and is meant to prepare you for seminar. As before, you should post your response no later than Monday, September 28 at 4:15 p.m. (Claremont time). After you’ve attended seminar, go back and ENGAGE with at least three of your classmates’ by clicking the “Comment” button beneath their posts. Post your comments anytime between Wednesday, September 30 at 4:15 p.m. and Friday, October 2 at 11:59 p.m. (Claremont time).

We’ll see you soon! Be well until then.

Week 05

We’ll regroup as a whole colectiva this week with the common goals of learning more about the historian’s craft. To foster our learning, we’ll read two selections that help us think more about gender history, social history, and oral history

This MONDAY we’ll read chapter 3 of the book From Out of the Shadows: Mexican Women in Twentieth-Century America (1998/2008). Written by legendary historian in Vicki L. Ruiz, the chapter is a wonderful opportunity for us to examine how multiple kinds of sources can construct an intentional and analytical cohesive story. We’ll be led in our analysis by one of our classmates.

For WEDNESDAY we’ll continue our conversation with the first chapter in Elizabeth Escobedo’s From Coveralls to Zoot Suits: The Lives of Mexican American Women on the World War II Home Front (2013). We’ll have a new leader guiding our analytical process but our goals will be the same.

We’re just about a third of the way through or semester together. You’re all doing great! It’s a great time to pause, breathe, and take stock of how you’re feeling—whether about life, about school, or about anything! On the school front, it’s a good time to check-in with your syllabi (and your professors) and start to re-organize yourself for the next phase.

You got this! Stay focused, stay calm, and certainly stay well…

Week 04

This week will be a little bit different. We’ll read a little more and meet less as we break into smaller seminar groups to enhance our discussion.

Each of you will only attend ONE of our class meetings this week as I split you up into two groups—Group A and Group B. If you have been assigned to Group A, you will attend our class meeting on MONDAY. If you have been assigned to Group B, you will attend our WEDNESDAY meeting. You can learn what group you are assigned to by visiting our Flipgrid discussion topic for the week.

No matter which group you’re in, we’ll all do the same reading. This week we are reading and discussing the first four chapters of Becoming Mexican American: Ethnicity, Culture, and Identity in Chicano Los Angeles, 1900-1945, by historian George J. Sánchez. Since its publication in 1993 it has remained one of the more important books of the field.

Whether you are in Group A or Group B you must complete the reading before Monday’s class time so you can post your response to the Flipgrid topic I’ve posted. By posting your reply before Monday’s class starts, we’ll all be on even ground no matter our group assignment.

Then, after both of our class meetings have taken place, I ask you to return to our Flipgrid topic and engage with at least five of your classmates’ posted responses. You do that by posting a video comment on their original post. By waiting until Wednesday’s class begins, we’ll all have the benefit of a seminar discussion on the reading before engaging with each other. I’ll keep our Flipgrid topic open until Friday evening at 11:59p.m. (Pacific time), so as long as you post before then you’ll be fine.

Meeting in smaller seminar groups will let us discuss the readings in a different way. Consult your syllabus to prepare yourself for that seminar. Come ready to answer and ask questions that reflect your understanding of the readings but also allow us to hear the same from each other.

I look forward to seeing you in “mini-seminar” next week. Be well until then.

Week 03

This week we’ll start to learn a little about the early US period in California history through the city of San Francisco, a place where a heterogeneous Latin American-descent population made their home in the 19th century.

On MONDAY, we’ll read the first two chapters from my book, Latinos at the Golden Gate: Creating Community and Identity in San Francisco. (You’ll find it as 04_SummersSandoval.pdf on Sakai.) For the next few weeks we should start to be inquisitive about the historian’s craft. As we do our readings, let’s pay special attention to two things: the sources authors use to frame their analysis and the ways they craft story from them. Our collective discussion and analysis will be guided by two of of our colectiva members.

Our WEDNESDAY class will be a little different. We’ll talk about our first “Mini-Story” assignment, which will be due at the start of class. The source you will use to write this 1-2 page assignment is a newspaper from the California Digital Newspaper Collection. Please read the description of the assignment in our syllabus and follow the steps outlined in our course Schedule.

The assignment should be written in the format described in “The Guidelines for All Written Assignments” document, which is appended to our class syllabus. You should cite your source using properly formatted footnotes throughout, as described in the same document. If you’re not sure how to format a footnote citation for your source, look it up by searching for “newspaper footnote Turabian” and multiple resources will be there to guide you.

Be sure to include a full copy of the digital newspaper article you selected with your assignment. Without it, I’ll have a hard time knowing what you wrote about. To turn in the assignment, save your work as a single PDF and name it “lastname_Mini1.pdf” (mine would be “SummersSandoval_Mini1.pdf”). Upload it to our Drop Box on Sakai by the beginning of class.

Each of us will take a few minutes during class to talk about 1) our search and selection process; 2) the content of the article we selected; and 3) our experience using it to craft a mini analytical story.

Be safe and be well until then…

Week 02

Now it’s time to get started learning about the broader context of the field. For the next two months we’ll read through a selection of works relating to Latinx histories of California. The field itself is deep and rich and impossible to cover fully in the time we have. But we’ll use each reading as an opportunity to build out our knowledge with the goal of leaving each class with a greater understanding of the past, including other topics we won’t discuss in detail and some of the sources that can help us understand them.

On MONDAY we’ll discuss the article “Early California Reconsidered: Mexican, Anglos, and Indians at Mission San José,” by James A. Sandos and Patricia B. Sandos. In it we’ll learn a little about the colonial past of California as well as a related archival collection. During our discussion, I’ll help provide us with more of a foundation for this long and rich part of the region’s past.

For WEDNESDAY we’ll read the article “Engendering the History of Alta California, 1769-1848: Gender, Sexuality, and the Family” from the pathbreaking Chicana historian Antonia Castañeda. Her article will give us a chance to learn more about Spanish colonialism, including the ways gender/sex shaped the historical experiences of all. For us it will also be a way to start introducing the use of theory in the study of the past. Our collective analysis will be lead by one of the members of our colectiva.

I hope the first week was an enjoyable one for you. It’ll take time to get used to the new schedule and pace of things (didn’t I accidentally end class 15 minutes early last time?) but I’m glad we can do that together. See you next week!

Week 01

Here we are at the start of (what I hope will be) an amazing semester of learning and collaboration. This week we’ll learn a bit about our class, each other, and the larger field of Latinx history.

On MONDAY we’ll gather in our first Zoom class meeting and learn a bit about our class. To prepare, all you have to do is download our class syllabus from Sakai (it’s in the “Readings” folder) and read through it.

As soon as we’re done with class I hope you will visit our class Flipgrid and POST your first video response to our first Flipgrid topic, which is labeled as “Prompt 1.”

On WEDNESDAY we’ll have our first in-class collaborative discussion. You’ll need to read the article “Nuestra América: Latino History as United States History” (01-RuizNuestra.pdf) by Vicki L. Ruiz before our class. We’ll engage with each as we engage with Ruiz’ thoughts on our field.

You can find our Zoom login information on our Sakai site or in our “Schedule” page above. That information will stay the same for all our class meetings this semester.

I’m looking forward to seeing you soon! Be well until then…

¡Bienvenidos! / Welcome!

Welcome to the fall 2020 online home “Latinifornia” (History 101T CH) a historical research seminar taught at Pomona College.

My name is Tomás Summers Sandoval, but you can call me “Profe.” I’m an Associate Professor of History and Chicanx~Latinx Studies at Pomona College, and the Coordinator of Pomona’s Chicanx-Latinx Studies Program. Most importantly, I’m really excited to learn with you over the next fifteen weeks.

As you know, all of the Claremont Colleges are going fully online for the fall 2020 semester. Because of that, I’m redesigning our class to better serve your learning needs and create (to the best of my abilities) the kind of hands-on and collaborative learning you’ve come to know in Claremont.

I’ll post all the details about our class (learning goals, assignments, readings, schedule, etc.) in the pages above on Monday, August 10. One thing I want to share with you now is that all of the readings you’ll need for our class will be provided free of charge. That means there’s nothing you’ll need to get started on August 24th, other than a computer and an internet connection.

Our first class meeting will be on Monday, August 24th. We’ll meet at 4:15 PM (Pacific time) using Zoom. You can find the login information on our Sakai site.