Nicole M. Guidotti-Hernández, “Archiving Mexican Masculinities in Diaspora” (Duke UP, 2021)

Nicole M. Guidotti-Hernández once again engages in the fearless work of challenging structures of domination. In her most recent book, Archiving Mexican Masculinities in Diaspora (Duke University Press, 2021), Profesora Guidotti-Hernández theorizes through the idea of the masculinized Mexican subject and leads us to the possibilities of historicizing how masculinities are archived and to what degree their intimacies, desires, and emotions emerge in both private collections and public institutions. By taking a Latinx feminist and queer reading of two of the most well-known stories in Mexican History in the United States (the Flores Magón brothers and the Bracero Program), she provides us with an affective history of Mexican masculinities in diaspora. Guidotti-Hernández declares early on that “…migration and separation…altered gender relations and expressions of gender” (2). This critical understanding provides her with a foundation on which to unravel the rest of her manuscript.

Dr. Nicole Guidotti-Hernández first came into contact with the highly-curated archives of these two historical flashpoints and saw what other scholars and public audiences were supposed to see, but, she writes, “Yet I also saw something else that was harder to put into words” (12-13). By exemplifying rigorous interdisciplinary research, she puts into words how migration structured and created feelings. Mexican men’s intimacies, emotions, and desires, as a result of separation, influenced their lives as political and economic subjects. Over 16 chapters and 290 pages, Guidotti-Hernández offers field-shifting contributions to Latinx Studies, histories of migration and labor, and Gender and Sexuality. Readers interested in Latinx feminist and queer approaches to history, and those interested in the history of Mexicans in the United States, should immediately get their copy of Archiving Mexican Masculinities in Diaspora.

Jonathan Cortez is currently the 2021-2023 César Chávez Postdoctoral Fellow in the Department of Latin American, Latino, and Caribbean Studies at Dartmouth College. You can follow Jonathan on Twitter @joncortz

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