Martha Gonzalez

Martha Gonzalez

Assistant Professor of Chicana/o Latina/o Studies

Department: Chicano/Latino Studies

Office Address: Miller 206, Lincoln 1101 (Pomona)

Office Phone: (909) 607-3548 & 607-3710


Personal Website: Click here

Academic History

  • 2013 PhD in Feminism University of Washington, Seattle. Dissertation title: "Chican@ Artivistas: East Los Angeles Trenches Transborder Tactics."
  • 1999 B.A Ethnomusicology, University of California, Los Angeles

Areas of Expertise

My research interests include Chicana feminist theory, Chican@ music and popular culture, transnational musical dialogues, and feminist development theory. I specifically look at the informal translocal dialogues between Jarocha/o communities in Mexico and Chicana/o and Latin@ communities in the U.S.

Selected Research and Publications

  • 2013 "Chican@ Artivistas at the Intersection of Hope and Imagination." The Journal for the Society for the Study of Gloria Anzaldua Conference, El Mundo Zurdo. University of Texas Press (In press).
  • 2013 "Mixing in the Kitchen: Entre Mujeres Feminine Translocal Composition." Performing Motherhood. Ontario, Canada. Demeter Press (In Press).
  • 2011 "Intersectionality in Context: Three Cases for the Specificity of Intersectionality from the Perspective of Feminists in the Americas," co-authored with Rebecca Clark and Sara Diaz for an anthology as a result of the International Conference for Young Academics titled Race, Class, Gender as categories of difference and inequality: Which Perspectives Arise from the Concept of 'Intersectionality' for Human and Cultural Sciences? CIERRA /University of Erfurt. Paris, France.
  • 2011 "Sonic (Trans) Migration of Son Jarocho Zapateado: Rhythmic Intention, Metamorphosis and Manifestation in Fandango and Performance." Ethnic Identity Politics, Transnationalization, and Transculturation in American Urban Popular Music: Inter-American Perspectives. Eds. Wilfried Raussert and Michelle Habell-Pallan. Trier: Germany, Wissenschaftlicher Verlag Trier (WVT).
  • 2008 "Zapateado Afro-Chicana Fandango Style: Self-Reflective Moments in Zapateado," in Dancing Across Borders: Danzas y Bailes Mexicanos. Ed. Olga Nájera-Ramírez, Norma Cantu, and Brenda Romero, Chicago: University of Illinois Press.

Awards and Honors

  • 2012-2013 Arts and Sciences Graduate Deans Medal Award, University of Washington, Seattle.
  • 2012-2013 Grammy Award Winner for Best Latin/Alternative or Urban Rock Album
  • 2012-2012 Mellon Foundation John E. Sawyer Seminar on the Comparative Study of Cultures.
  • 2012-2013 Ford Foundation Dissertation Fellowship.
  • 2012-2013 University of Washington Vice-President for Minority Affairs and Vice Provost for Diversity Community Building Award.
  • 2012-2013 "Cultural Treasure of Boyle Heights" by Alliance for California Traditional Arts (ACTA), National Endowment for the Arts (NEA), and Building Healthy Communities.
  • 2011-2012 Doman Award for Excellence in Teaching, Gender Women Sexuality Studies Department.
  • 2008-2009 Graduate Top Scholar Award. The Graduate School, University of Washington Seattle.
  • 2008-2012 Bank of America Endowed Scholar Fellowship. University of Washington Graduate Opportunity Minority Achievement Program (GO-MAP)
  • 2007-2008 Fulbright Fellowship Garcia-Robles.


Martha Gonzalez was born and raised in East Los Angeles and is a Chicana artivista (artist/activist), feminist music theorist and academic.

Her academic interest in music has been fueled by her own musicianship as a singer and percussionist for East L.A's Quetzal for the last 17 years. Quetzal has made considerable impact in the Los Angeles Chicano music scene. The unique blend of East Los Angeles sounds as well as the social justice content in the work has sparked dialogue and theoretical work among various artist communities, culture theorists, and scholars across the country, Mexico and Japan. The relevance of Quetzal's work has been noted in a range of publications from dissertations to scholarly books, most recently Patricia Zavella's I'm Neither Here Nor There: Mexicans' Quotidian Struggles with Migration and Poverty (Duke University Press, 2011). As a result, the U.S. Library of Congress and Kennedy Center extended an invitation to perform and speak in September of 2011 as a part of their "Homegrown" music series. In addition, the traveling exhibit "American Sabor: Latinos in U.S. Popular Music" sponsored by the Smithsonian Institute, featured Quetzal as leaders and innovators of Chicano music. This feat coupled with their Grammy Award winning album on the Smithsonian Folkways label was released on May of 2012 titled "Imaginaries" marks the importance of her past and ongoing work.

As a musician, Gonzalez has collaborated, and/or toured with artist such as Los Lobos, Los Van Van, Jackson Brown, Susana Baca, Perla Batalla, Jaguares, Ozomatli, Jonathan Richman, Los Muñequitos de Matanzas, ¡Cubanismo!, Taj Mahal, Tom Waits, Los Super Seven, Lila Downs, Raul Malo, Rick Treviño, Son De Madera, Relicario, Chuchumbe Charanga Cakewalk, The B-side Players, Teatro Campesino and Laura Rebolloso.

In these ways music pedagogy and transnational music movement experience has influenced Gonzalez's scholarship.

Courses Taught

  • Fandango as a De-Colonial Tool
  • Chicano Music: From Genre to Experience
  • Chicana/o Latina/o Research Methods
  • Gender and Popular Culture

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