History Department
History Department

UT History Faculty & Graduate Students Shine at TSHA, NACCS Tejas Foco 2017

Tue, March 14, 2017
UT History Faculty & Graduate Students Shine at TSHA, NACCS Tejas Foco 2017
Professor Emilio Zamora; Dr. Valerie Martínez

Story by Rebecca Adeline Johnston, Ph.D Student, UT History Dept.

The University of Texas-Austin History Department had a strong showing at two recent major events, the Texas State Historical Association Annual Meeting (TSHA) and the National Association for Chicana and Chicano Studies Tejas Foco conference (NACCS).

By virtue of sheer quantity, the most notable accolades went to Dr. Valerie Martínez. Dr. Martínez earned her Ph.D. in history from UT in 2016 and is currently a fellow with the Institute for Historical Studies. Her dissertation, entitled “Latina Ambassadors: The Benito Juárez Squadron and Pan Americanism during World War II,” looks at the role of Latina military participation in contributing to historically-contingent sentiments of Pan-American unity. It netted her three fellowships from the TSHA: the Catarino and Evangelina Hernández Research Fellowship in Latino History, the John H. Jenkins Research Fellowship in Texas History, and the Ellen Clarke Temple Research Fellowship in Texas Women’s History. You can watch her receive the three awards in quick succession here, beginning at about the 16 minute mark. Finally, Dr. Martínez also won the NACCS Tejas Dissertation Award, granted for “an outstanding dissertation that best represents a significant topic related to the Mexican American experience in Texas.”

https://liberalarts.utexas.edu/history/_files/images/misc/zamora-martinez-jones-TSHA-March-2017We are also proud to announce that Professor Emilio Zamora was recognized by NACCS with the Premio Estrella de Aztlán Lifetime Achievement award. The award is in honor of Dr. Zamora’s more than three decades of work, which has explored the experience of the Mexican working class in Texas, the role of Mexicans and Mexican-Americans during both World Wars, and Mexican political culture in Texas, among other topics. He is the author of three books and has contributed to two textbooks on Texan history.

An additional highlight of the NACCS conference was a panel put together by Dr. Martínez and three of our own graduate students, Lizeth Elizondo, Alejandra Garza, and María Hammack. The panel, “Re-Shaping the Production of Knowledge: Mexican American History in K-12 Education,” drew on their experiences reviewers of a racist and inaccurate Mexican-American studies textbook.


Thanks to the efforts of teams of activists and scholars, including the panelists, the text has since been rejected for use in Texas classrooms. The panel was heavily attended and has resulted in a subsequent conference invitation for the group.

Photo above: Professor Emilio Zamora, Dr. Valerie Martínez, and Professor and Chair of History Jacqueline Jones.

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