Department of Geography and the Environment

Rebecca M. Torres


Associate ProfessorPh.D., University of California at Davis

Associate Professor, Department of Geography and the Environment
Rebecca M. Torres

Contact

Interests


(Im)migration, Children/Youth Geographies, Gender, Feminist Geography, Activist/Engaged Scholarship, Mexico, Latin America

Biography


Rebecca Maria Torres is associate professor in the Department of Geography & the Environment, associate of the Teresa Lozano Long Institute of Latin American Studies (LLILAS), associate of the Population Research Center (PRC), and affiliate of the Center for Women’s and Gender Studies (CWGS) at the University of Texas at Austin. Her areas of interest include (im)migration, Children/Youth Geographies, Gender, Feminist Geography, and Activist/Engaged Scholarship. Since 2015, she has collaborated with a bi-national, trans-disciplinary team of scholars on research focusing on the current situation of refugee/migrant children and youth from Mexico and Central America. Project publications include: “A Year After Obama Declared a ‘Humanitarian Situation’ at the Border, Child Migration Continues,” NACLA, 08/27/15; “Re-Conceptualising Agency in Migrant Children from Central America and Mexico,” in the Journal of Ethnic and Migration Studies (JEMS); andA Crisis of Rights and Responsibility: Feminist Geopolitical Perspectives on Latin American Refugees and Forced Migrants” in Gender, Place, & Culture. Other articles related to child/youth migration include: “Child Migration and Transnationalized Violence in Central and North America,” JLAG; “Dibujando al ‘Otro Lado’: Children’s Depictions of the United States in a Rural Mexican Migrant Sending Community,” JLAG; “Undocumented Students’ Narratives of Liminal Citizenship: High Aspirations, Exclusion and ‘In-Between’ Identities,” Professional Geographer; and “Luchando Por Una Nueva Vida: Academic Aspirations of Latino Immigrant Youth in the U.S. Rural South,” in Education in a World of Migration: Implications for Policy and Practice. She has also published migration-related articles in journals such as the Annals of the Association of American Geographers; Transactions of the Institute of British Geographers; Gender, Place & Culture, Journal of Ethnic and Migration Studies (JEMS), Geoforum, and Geographical Review, among others

 Rebecca has been involved in various activist and community engaged research projects, including partnering with a rural public school system in North Carolina to establish Los Puentes Dual Language Immersion program to address ESL needs of Latino immigrant children. She also collaborated on a project examining construction workers’ conditions in Austin, spearheaded by the worker’s rights organization Proyecto de Defensa Laboral (PDL)/Worker’s Defense Project.  She holds a BA in History, Ibero-American Studies. and Spanish from the University of Wisconsin-Madison, and an MS in International Agricultural Development and a Ph.D. in Geography from the University of California at Davis.

Courses


GRG 390L • Research In Geography

36935 • Spring 2020
Meets TH 4:00PM-7:00PM RLP 3.710

Builds on topics explored in Geography 390K by focusing on epistemology and research in the field of geography. Students develop plans for research and write a research proposal.

Required of all first-year graduate students in geography.

Prerequisite: Graduate standing and Geography 390K.

UGS 302 • Latinx Migration Narratives

59610 • Spring 2020
Meets TTH 12:30PM-2:00PM MAI 220C
CDGCWr ID

This course explores the Latinx migration experience through migrant/refugee stories, or narratives, as documented through testimonial literature, (auto)-biography, ethnography, novels, film, photography and art. We will examine both individual and collective representations of the lived experience of migrants/refugees, and situate them within broader current social, political, cultural and economic immigration debates.

GRG 356T • Geog Of Lat American-U.S. Migr

37045 • Spring 2019
Meets TTH 12:30PM-2:00PM JES A203A
CDGCWr (also listed as LAS 330)

Please check back for updates.

GRG 390L • Research In Geography

37145 • Spring 2019
Meets TH 4:00PM-7:00PM RLP 3.710

Builds on topics explored in Geography 390K by focusing on epistemology and research in the field of geography. Students develop plans for research and write a research proposal.

Required of all first-year graduate students in geography.

Prerequisite: Graduate standing and Geography 390K.

LAS 330 • Global Food, Farming, & Hunger

39775 • Fall 2018
Meets TTH 12:30PM-2:00PM RLP 1.102
GCWr

Please check back for updates.

WGS 393 • Gender And Migration

46225 • Fall 2018
Meets TH 4:00PM-7:00PM RLP 3.710

Interdisciplinary topics relating to Women's and Gender Studies.  Seats restricted to WGS MA and Portfolio students during early registration.  Check cross-listings for home departments and originating field of study.

GRG 390L • Research In Geography

37090 • Spring 2018
Meets TH 4:00PM-7:00PM CLA 3.710

Builds on topics explored in Geography 390K by focusing on epistemology and research in the field of geography. Students develop plans for research and write a research proposal.

Required of all first-year graduate students in geography.

Prerequisite: Graduate standing and Geography 390K.

UGS 302 • Latina/O Migration Narratives

61920 • Spring 2018
Meets TTH 12:30PM-2:00PM MAI 220C
CDGCWr ID

The Signature Course (UGS 302 and 303) introduces first-year students to the university’s academic community through the exploration of new interests. The Signature Course is your opportunity to engage in college-level thinking and learning.

GRG 344K • Global Food, Farming, & Hunger

37435 • Fall 2017
Meets TTH 2:00PM-3:30PM WAG 308
GCWr (also listed as LAS 330)

Examination of contemporary transformations in global agro-food systems, with emphasis on the current paradox of epidemic obesity in some parts of the world and enduring hunger in others. 

GRG 396T • Gender And Migration

37560 • Fall 2017
Meets TH 4:00PM-7:00PM CBA 4.346
(also listed as LAS 388, WGS 393)

Latin American Studies 381 and 388 may not both be counted unless the topics vary.

Prerequisite: Graduate standing.

Course number may be repeated for credit when the topics vary.

GRG 390L • Research In Geography

37490 • Spring 2017
Meets TH 4:00PM-7:00PM CLA 3.710

Builds on topics explored in Geography 390K by focusing on epistemology and research in the field of geography. Students develop plans for research and write a research proposal.

Required of all first-year graduate students in geography.

Prerequisite: Graduate standing and Geography 390K.

UGS 302 • Latina/O Migration Narratives

62565 • Spring 2017
Meets TTH 12:30PM-2:00PM MAI 220C
CDGCWr ID

The Signature Course (UGS 302 and 303) introduces first-year students to the university’s academic community through the exploration of new interests. The Signature Course is your opportunity to engage in college-level thinking and learning.

GRG 390L • Research In Geography

36725 • Spring 2016
Meets TH 4:00PM-7:00PM CLA 3.710

Builds on topics explored in Geography 390K by focusing on epistemology and research in the field of geography. Students develop plans for research and write a research proposal.

Required of all first-year graduate students in geography.

Prerequisite: Graduate standing and Geography 390K.

GRG 344K • Global Food, Farming, & Hunger

36460 • Fall 2015
Meets TTH 2:00PM-3:30PM CLA 1.102
GCWr (also listed as LAS 330)

Examination of contemporary transformations in global agro-food systems, with emphasis on the current paradox of epidemic obesity in some parts of the world and enduring hunger in others.

GRG 390L • Research In Geography

36810 • Spring 2015
Meets TH 4:00PM-7:00PM CLA 3.710

The research design and proposal writing process is among the most important, exciting, challenging, frustrating, alienating and rewarding endeavors for graduate students and faculty alike. This course seeks to demystify this process through a rigorous but supportive environment in which students are guided through the key stages of research design and proposal writing. This course is organized as an intensive collaborative workshop in which students bring individual components of their respective projects to class for constructive critical peer review for subsequent revision. The course objectives include: (1) to develop constructive peer reviewing skills; (2) to learn how to receive constructive criticism, rethink and revise; (3) to begin to cultivate a scholarly/academic identity; (4) to gain an in-depth understanding of the intellectual and practical dimensions of the proposal writing and review process; (5) to produce a polished, high quality and competitive research proposal modeled after the National Science Foundation (NSF) DDRIG (Doctoral Dissertation Research Improvement Grant). 

UGS 302 • Latina/O Migration Narratives

62395 • Spring 2015
Meets TTH 12:30PM-2:00PM MAI 220C
CDGCWr

The Signature Course (UGS 302 and 303) introduces first-year students to the university’s academic community through the exploration of new interests. The Signature Course is your opportunity to engage in college-level thinking and learning.

GRG 344K • Global Food, Farming, & Hunger

37590 • Fall 2014
Meets TTH 5:00PM-6:30PM CLA 1.102
GCWr (also listed as LAS 330)

Examination of contemporary transformations in global agro-food systems, with emphasis on the current paradox of epidemic obesity in some parts of the world and enduring hunger in others. Prerequisite: Upper-division standing.

GRG 396T • Gender And Migration

37720 • Fall 2014
Meets TH 1:00PM-4:00PM CLA 3.710
(also listed as LAS 388, WGS 393)

After many decades of scholarship that virtually ignored gender, scholars increasingly have come to recognize the highly gendered nature of migration and its multiple outcomes.  Gender analysis is critical to migration studies, not only because of the gendered nature of mobility and labor, but also because it is the key social construct upon which we organize our lives and society.  Men and women experience, negotiate, reconstitute, enact and respond to migration in deeply different ways, even within the same family and community. Understanding these differences, across multiple scales in diverse places, is important to gauge the uneven impacts of migration.  In this course we seek to:  1) discern the distinct forms  in which men and women experience, negotiate, resist, enact and adapt to migration and current neoliberal practices often underlying (im)mobilities, as well as the sources of these differences; 2) comprehend how migration has unevenly reshaped various facets of life for immigrants and their families –  such as material accumulation and consumption, desires, aspirations, division of labor, mobility,  power relations, responsibilities, inclusion, exclusion and identity across gender, place and scale; 4) To examine, critically, current migration and development discourse and policy in light of the  specificities and differences of  place, scale, gender and race/ethnicity in envisaging future alternatives.

This course focuses on contemporary transformations in global gender and  migration from an interdisciplinary social science perspective, but with a strong emphasis on the work of feminist geographers.  In particular feminist geographies of migration pay close attention to dimensions such as the spatialities and social constructions of power; the politics of scale; gender divisions of mobility and labor; geographies of responsibility and care; critical theorizations of space and place; indentities; emotion and affect; situated knowledges, among others.  We will approach topics through a variety of methods including critical readings of academic, ethnographic and more popular texts; seminar discussions (both instructor and student facilitated); in-class and  student research paper presentations.  To illustrate current trends and processes we will examine case studies from different parts of the globe, however the course will have a heavy Latin America/US migration orientation.

GRG 390L • Research In Geography

37905 • Spring 2014
Meets TH 5:00PM-8:00PM CLA 0.124

see syllabus

UGS 302 • Latina/O Migration Narratives

64845 • Spring 2014
Meets TTH 12:30PM-2:00PM MAI 220C
CDWr ID

The Signature Course (UGS 302 and 303) introduces first-year students to the university’s academic community through the exploration of new interests. The Signature Course is your opportunity to engage in college-level thinking and learning.

GRG 344K • Global Food, Farming, & Hunger

37835 • Fall 2013
Meets TTH 2:00PM-3:30PM CLA 1.102
(also listed as LAS 330)

This course focuses on contemporary transformations in global agro-food systems from a social science perspective. Employing an interdisciplinary approach, we will explore recent changes in agricultural production, markets, networks and consumption in both industrialized and developing nations. We will seek to unravel the current paradox of growing global disparities, that is, why more people are going hungry in the world while obesity has reached a historical high – threatening to shorten life expectancies (unprecedented in the era of modern medical science).  Globalization, particularly the tensions between the “global” and “local” will be an overarching theme threaded throughout the course.  In particular, we will examine the contentious nature and contradictions embedded within “agricultural development,” – particularly processes of “modernization” and the neoliberalization of agricultural policy, development, trade, consumption and desires.  We seek to comprehend these global processes, but also to explore them at a local level to understand the “real life” human dimensions of transformation in agricultural and food systems.  We will also examine new alternative approaches to addressing some of the challenges and contradictions in agro-food systems including – organic farming, local food movements, community supported agriculture, fair trade, ethical consumption, producer organization and alternative sustainable development.  

In our analysis of agro-food restructuring we will examine key current issues and debates from a variety of perspectives and points of view.  Topics will include:  the “green revolution” and its socio-economic impacts; the genetic engineering debate; hunger and inequality; biofuels and global food crisis; food safety and nutrition; the politics of food aid; neoliberal agrarian policies and smallholders; farm labor and social justice; land reform; the sustainable agriculture movement; agriculture and the environment; gender and agriculture; farm labor issues; and vertical integration and the loss of the family farm, among others.  To illustrate current trends and processes we will examine case studies from different parts of the globe including: southeastern US, California, Iowa, Africa, India, Mexico, Brazil, Cuba and China, among others.  We will approach topics through a variety of methods including critical readings of academic, ethnographic and more popular texts; seminar discussions (both instructor and student facilitated); in-class projects & activities; invited guest speakers; films and student research paper presentations.

GRG 396T • Gender And Migration

37985 • Fall 2013
Meets TH 5:00PM-8:00PM CLA 4.106
(also listed as LAS 388, WGS 393)

After many decades of scholarship that virtually ignored gender, scholars increasingly have come to recognize the highly gendered nature of migration and its multiple outcomes.  Gender analysis is critical to migration studies, not only because of the gendered nature of mobility and labor, but also because it is the key social construct upon which we organize our lives and society.  Men and women experience, negotiate, reconstitute, enact and respond to migration in deeply different ways, even within the same family and community. Understanding these differences, across multiple scales in diverse places, is important to gauge the uneven impacts of migration.  In this course we seek to:  1) discern the distinct forms  in which men and women experience, negotiate, resist, enact and adapt to migration and current neoliberal practices often underlying (im)mobilities, as well as the sources of these differences; 2) comprehend how migration has unevenly reshaped various facets of life for immigrants and their families –  such as material accumulation and consumption, desires, aspirations, division of labor, mobility,  power relations, responsibilities, inclusion, exclusion and identity across gender, place and scale; 4) To examine, critically, current migration and development discourse and policy in light of the  specificities and differences of  place, scale, gender and race/ethnicity in envisaging future alternatives.

This course focuses on contemporary transformations in global gender and  migration from an interdisciplinary social science perspective, but with a strong emphasis on the work of feminist geographers.  In particular feminist geographies of migration pay close attention to dimensions such as the spatialities and social constructions of power; the politics of scale; gender divisions of mobility and labor; geographies of responsibility and care; critical theorizations of space and place; indentities; emotion and affect; situated knowledges, among others.  We will approach topics through a variety of methods including critical readings of academic, ethnographic and more popular texts; seminar discussions (both instructor and student facilitated); in-class and  student research paper presentations.  To illustrate current trends and processes we will examine case studies from different parts of the globe, however the course will have a heavy Latin America/US migration orientation.

GRG 390L • Research In Geography

37610 • Spring 2013
Meets TH 5:00PM-8:00PM CLA 3.710

The research design and proposal writing process is among the most important, exciting, challenging, frustrating, alienating and rewarding endeavors for graduate students and faculty alike.  This course seeks to demystify this process through a rigorous but supportive environment in which students are guided through the key stages of research design and proposal writing.  This course is organized as an intensive collaborative workshop in which students bring individual components of their respective projects to class for constructive critical peer review for subsequent revision. The course objectives include: (1) to develop constructive peer reviewing skills; (2) to learn how to receive constructive criticism, rethink and revise; (3) to begin to cultivate a scholarly/academic identity; (4) to gain an in-depth understanding of the intellectual and practical dimensions of the proposal writing and review process; (5) to produce a polished, high quality and competitive research proposal modeled after the National Science Foundation (NSF) DDRIG (Doctoral Dissertation Research Improvement Grant).

UGS 302 • Latina/O Migration Narratives

64065 • Spring 2013
Meets TTH 12:30PM-2:00PM MAI 220C
Wr

The Signature Course (UGS 302 and 303) introduces first-year students to the university’s academic community through the exploration of new interests. The Signature Course is your opportunity to engage in college-level thinking and learning.

GRG 344K • Global Food, Farming, & Hunger

37400 • Fall 2012
Meets TTH 12:30PM-2:00PM BEN 1.104
(also listed as LAS 330)

This course focuses on contemporary transformations in global agro-food systems from a social science perspective. Employing an interdisciplinary approach, we will explore recent changes in agricultural production, markets, networks and consumption in both industrialized and developing nations. We will seek to unravel the current paradox of growing global disparities, that is, why more people are going hungry in the world while obesity has reached a historical high – threatening to shorten life expectancies (unprecedented in the era of modern medical science).  Globalization, particularly the tensions between the “global” and “local” will be an overarching theme threaded throughout the course.  In particular, we will examine the contentious nature and contradictions embedded within “agricultural development,” – particularly processes of “modernization” and the neoliberalization of agricultural policy, development, trade, consumption and desires.  We seek to comprehend these global processes, but also to explore them at a local level to understand the “real life” human dimensions of transformation in agricultural and food systems.  We will also examine new alternative approaches to addressing some of the challenges and contradictions in agro-food systems including – organic farming, local food movements, community supported agriculture, fair trade, ethical consumption, producer organization and alternative sustainable development.  

In our analysis of agro-food restructuring we will examine key current issues and debates from a variety of perspectives and points of view.  Topics will include:  the “green revolution” and its socio-economic impacts; the genetic engineering debate; hunger and inequality; biofuels and global food crisis; food safety and nutrition; the politics of food aid; neoliberal agrarian policies and smallholders; farm labor and social justice; land reform; the sustainable agriculture movement; agriculture and the environment; gender and agriculture; farm labor issues; and vertical integration and the loss of the family farm, among others.  To illustrate current trends and processes we will examine case studies from different parts of the globe including: southeastern US, California, Iowa, Africa, India, Mexico, Brazil, Cuba and China, among others.  We will approach topics through a variety of methods including critical readings of academic, ethnographic and more popular texts; seminar discussions (both instructor and student facilitated); in-class projects & activities; invited guest speakers; films and student research paper presentations.

GRG 396T • Gender And Migration

37540 • Fall 2012
Meets TH 5:00PM-8:00PM GRG 408
(also listed as LAS 388, WGS 393)

After many decades of scholarship that virtually ignored gender, scholars increasingly have come to recognize the highly gendered nature of migration and its multiple outcomes.  Gender analysis is critical to migration studies, not only because of the gendered nature of mobility and labor, but also because it is the key social construct upon which we organize our lives and society.  Men and women experience, negotiate, reconstitute, enact and respond to migration in deeply different ways, even within the same family and community. Understanding these differences, across multiple scales in diverse places, is important to gauge the uneven impacts of migration.  In this course we seek to:  1) discern the distinct forms  in which men and women experience, negotiate, resist, enact and adapt to migration and current neoliberal practices often underlying (im)mobilities, as well as the sources of these differences; 2) comprehend how migration has unevenly reshaped various facets of life for immigrants and their families –  such as material accumulation and consumption, desires, aspirations, division of labor, mobility,  power relations, responsibilities, inclusion, exclusion and identity across gender, place and scale; 4) To examine, critically, current migration and development discourse and policy in light of the  specificities and differences of  place, scale, gender and race/ethnicity in envisaging future alternatives.

This course focuses on contemporary transformations in global gender and  migration from an interdisciplinary social science perspective, but with a strong emphasis on the work of feminist geographers.  In particular feminist geographies of migration pay close attention to dimensions such as the spatialities and social constructions of power; the politics of scale; gender divisions of mobility and labor; geographies of responsibility and care; critical theorizations of space and place; indentities; emotion and affect; situated knowledges, among others.  We will approach topics through a variety of methods including critical readings of academic, ethnographic and more popular texts; seminar discussions (both instructor and student facilitated); in-class and  student research paper presentations.  To illustrate current trends and processes we will examine case studies from different parts of the globe, however the course will have a heavy Latin America/US migration orientation.

UGS 302 • Latino Migration Narratives

63455 • Spring 2012
Meets TTH 12:30PM-2:00PM MAI 220C
Wr

The Signature Course (UGS 302 and 303) introduces first-year students to the university’s academic community through the exploration of new interests. The Signature Course is your opportunity to engage in college-level thinking and learning.

GRG 339K • Envir, Devel, & Food Productn

37355 • Fall 2011
Meets TTH 9:30AM-11:00AM GRG 312
Wr

Farming, Food & Global Hunger

This course focuses on contemporary transformations in global agro-food systems from a social science perspective. Employing an interdisciplinary approach, we will explore recent changes in agricultural production, markets, networks and consumption in both industrialized and developing nations. We will seek to unravel the current paradox of growing global disparities, that is, why more people are going hungry in the world while obesity has reached a historical high – threatening to shorten life expectancies (unprecedented in the era of modern medical science).  Globalization, particularly the tensions between the “global” and “local” will be an overarching theme threaded throughout the course.  In particular, we will examine the contentious nature and contradictions embedded within “agricultural development,” – particularly processes of “modernization” and the neoliberalization of agricultural policy, development, trade, consumption and desires.  We seek to comprehend these global processes, but also to explore them at a local level to understand the “real life” human dimensions of transformation in agricultural and food systems.  We will also examine new alternative approaches to addressing some of the challenges and contradictions in agro-food systems including – organic farming, local food movements, community supported agriculture, fair trade, ethical consumption, producer organization and alternative sustainable development. 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

In our analysis of agro-food restructuring we will examine key current issues and debates from a variety of perspectives and points of view.  Topics will include:  the “green revolution” and its socio-economic impacts; the genetic engineering debate; hunger and inequality; biofuels and global food crisis; food safety and nutrition; the politics of food aid; neoliberal agrarian policies and smallholders; farm labor and social justice; land reform; the sustainable agriculture movement; agriculture and the environment; gender and agriculture; farm labor issues; and vertical integration and the loss of the family farm, among others.  To illustrate current trends and processes we will examine case studies from different parts of the globe including: southeastern US, California, Iowa, Africa, India, Mexico, Brazil, Cuba and China, among others.  We will approach topics through a variety of methods including critical readings of academic, ethnographic and more popular texts; seminar discussions (both instructor and student facilitated); in-class projects & activities; invited guest speakers; films and student research paper presentations.

GRG 342C • Sustainable Development

37365 • Fall 2011
Meets TTH 5:00PM-6:30PM GRG 102
Wr

Tourism, Poverty & Development

     Tourism is the world’s largest transnational industry and one of the fastest growing economic sectors. Globalization has created significant opportunities for the expansion of tourism to even the most remote corners of the planet.  This global phenomenon has the power to generate foreign exchange earnings, attract international investment, increase tax revenues, create employment, and stimulate local economies in both industrialized and the developing nations. In most instances, realizing this potential involves the commodification of “place” and “space” for tourist mass consumption. Through a process of institutionalization and standardization, physical and cultural capital is packaged and transformed into “tourist spectacles” for the “tourist gaze.”  The economic, social, cultural and environmental landscapes of host destinations are, as a consequence, profoundly transformed.  Tourism has a multitude of impacts, both positive and negative, on people's lives and the environment they inhabit. With increased globalization, tourism is now undergoing a process of diversification and specialization.  Increasingly, we see the emergence of new forms of Post-Fordist tourism (nature tourism, ethnic tourism, adventure tourism, etc.) as an alternative to “Fordist” mass tourism.  There is also a trend for more “environmental” friendly and socially just forms of tourism such as “sustainable tourism,” “responsible tourism,”  “ecotourism,” and “volunteer tourism.”

     Tourism is increasingly being targeted by both industrialized and developing nations as a strategy for economic development.  Development agencies are, for instance, advocating “pro-poor strategies” to harness tourism for poverty alleviation.  Pro-poor tourism seeks to enhance the positive impacts of tourism while reducing the costs tourism can place on the poor.   The objectives of this course include to: 1) Critically analyze tourism as a mechanism for economic and community development, and poverty reduction; 2) Examine the social, cultural, economic and environmental impacts of tourism development; and 3) Analyze various strategies to minimize negative impacts and maximize benefits of tourism development.  We will approach topics through a variety of methods, including: critical readings of academic and applied texts; in-class discussions, projects & activities; invited guest speakers; films; and student presentations.   Texas’ tourism resources and potential will be our “living laboratory.”  Students will do an individual participant observation research project of a tourism site/circumstance of their choice.  Upon completion of the course, students will understand: 1) the problems and potential associated with employing tourism as a mechanism for community and economic development; 2) how different forms of tourism transform economic, social, cultural and environmental landscapes across the globe; 3) what are some different strategies for maximizing tourism benefits while minimizing costs.

 

 

GRG 396T • Gender And Migration

37690 • Spring 2011
Meets TH 4:00PM-7:00PM GRG 408
(also listed as LAS 388, WGS 393)

After many decades of scholarship that virtually ignored gender, scholars increasingly have come to recognize the highly gendered nature of migration and its multiple outcomes.  Gender analysis is critical to migration studies, not only because of the gendered nature of mobility and labor, but also because it is the key social construct upon which we organize our lives and society.  Men and women experience, negotiate, reconstitute, enact and respond to migration in deeply different ways, even within the same family and community. Understanding these differences, across multiple scales in diverse places, is important to gauge the uneven impacts of migration.  In this course we seek to:  1) discern the distinct forms  in which men and women experience, negotiate, resist, enact and adapt to migration and current neoliberal practices often underlying (im)mobilities, as well as the sources of these differences; 2) comprehend how migration has unevenly reshaped various facets of life for immigrants and their families –  such as material accumulation and consumption, desires, aspirations, division of labor, mobility,  power relations, responsibilities, inclusion, exclusion and identity across gender, place and scale; 4) To examine, critically, current migration and development discourse and policy in light of the  specificities and differences of  place, scale, gender and race/ethnicity in envisaging future alternatives.

 

This course focuses on contemporary transformations in global gender and  migration from an interdisciplinary social science perspective, but with a strong emphasis on the work of feminist geographers.  In particular feminist geographies of migration pay close attention to dimensions such as the spatialities and social constructions of power; the politics of scale; gender divisions of mobility and labor; geographies of responsibility and care; critical theorizations of space and place; indentities; emotion and affect; situated knowledges, among others.  We will approach topics through a variety of methods including critical readings of academic, ethnographic and more popular texts; seminar discussions (both instructor and student facilitated); in-class and  student research paper presentations.  To illustrate current trends and processes we will examine case studies from different parts of the globe, however the course will have a heavy Latin America/US migration orientation. 

GRG 339K • Envir, Devel, & Food Productn

37165 • Fall 2010
Meets TTH 2:00PM-3:30PM GRG 316
Wr

This course focuses on contemporary transformations in global agro-food systems from a social science perspective. Employing an interdisciplinary approach, we will explore recent changes in agricultural production, markets, networks and consumption in both industrialized and developing nations. We will seek to unravel the current paradox of growing global disparities, that is, why more people are going hungry in the world while obesity has reached a historical high – threatening to shorten life expectancies (unprecedented in the era of modern medical science).  Globalization, particularly the tensions between the “global” and “local” will be an overarching theme threaded throughout the course.  In particular, we will examine the contentious nature and contradictions embedded within “agricultural development,” – particularly processes of “modernization” and the neoliberalization of agricultural policy, development, trade, consumption and desires.  We seek to comprehend these global processes, but also to explore them at a local level to understand the “real life” human dimensions of transformation in agricultural and food systems.  We will also examine new alternative approaches to addressing some of the challenges and contradictions in agro-food systems including – organic farming, local food movements, community supported agriculture, fair trade, ethical consumption, producer organization and alternative sustainable development. 

GRG 356T • Farming, Food, & Global Hunger

37775 • Fall 2009
Meets TTH 3:30PM-5:00PM GRG 424

Please check back for updates.

GRG 356T • Farming, Food, & Global Hunger

36790 • Spring 2009
Meets TTH 12:30PM-2:00PM GRG 408

Please check back for updates.

Migration Courses


UGS 302 - LatinX Migration Narratives (Undergraduate)

This course explores the Latino migration experience through migrant stories, or narratives, as documented through testimonial literature, (auto)-biography, ethnography, novels, film, photography and art. We will examine both individual and collective representations of the lived experience of migrants, and situate them within broader current social, political, cultural and economic immigration debates.

Migration is among the most pressing and controversial issues of our time. Examining migration through stories, which are expressions of everyday life experiences by the actors themselves, places a human face on the highly contested issue that is prominent in the public arena. This approach enables students to understand how international, domestic and local policy and practice reshape the life experiences of migrants, and how they in turn respond, negotiate, resist and attempt to access opportunities. 

GRG 396T/WGS 393/LAS 388 - Gender and Migration (Graduate)

After many decades of scholarship that virtually ignored gender, scholars increasingly have come to recognize the highly gendered nature of migration and its multiple outcomes.  Gender analysis is critical to migration studies, not only because of the gendered nature of mobility and labor, but also because it is the key social construct upon which we organize our lives and society.  Men and women experience, negotiate, reconstitute, enact and respond to migration in deeply different ways, even within the same family and community. Understanding these differences, across multiple scales in diverse places, is important to gauge the uneven impacts of migration.  In this course we seek to:  1) discern the distinct forms  in which men and women experience, negotiate, resist, enact and adapt to migration and current neoliberal practices often underlying (im)mobilities, as well as the sources of these differences; 2) comprehend how migration has unevenly reshaped various facets of life for immigrants and their families –  such as material accumulation and consumption, desires, aspirations, division of labor, mobility,  power relations, responsibilities, inclusion, exclusion and identity across gender, place and scale; 4) To examine, critically, current migration and development discourse and policy in light of the  specificities and differences of  place, scale, gender and race/ethnicity in envisaging future alternatives.

This course focuses on contemporary transformations in global gender and  migration from an interdisciplinary social science perspective, but with a strong emphasis on the work of feminist geographers.  In particular feminist geographies of migration pay close attention to dimensions such as the spatialities and social constructions of power; the politics of scale; gender divisions of mobility and labor; geographies of responsibility and care; critical theorizations of space and place; indentities; emotion and affect; situated knowledges, among others.  We will approach topics through a variety of methods including critical readings of academic, ethnographic and more popular texts; seminar discussions (both instructor and student facilitated); in-class and  student research paper presentations.  To illustrate current trends and processes we will examine case studies from different parts of the globe, however the course will have a heavy Latin America/US migration orientation. 

GRG 38143/LAS 388 - Mexican Migration Research Seminar (Graduate)

This course explores contemporary research on the “New Geography of Mexican Migration” to the US, with an emphasis on new origins and destinations, neoliberal restructuring and migration, rural transformation and migration, political and social citizenship,  indigenous migration, migration and development,“the left behind,” the gendered nature of migration and the relationship between internal and international migration, among other topics.  The seminar will take a “hands-on” approach, with students organizing and collaborating in 2-3 different interdisciplinary research teams.  Over the course of the semester, each team of researchers will engage in a major writing project -- specifically to analyze and prepare a publishable quality academic manuscript based on original qualitative and quantitative data from one of 2-3 different field studies.  These studies include: 1) Mexican migration from the Tierra Caliente region (Michoacán) to rural North Carolina; 2) Rural transformation & settlement in the US South; 3) Tourism-driven internal and new international migration in the Yucatan (Cancun & rural communities of Quintana Roo).  Within this context, students will have the opportunity to explore a variety of theoretical perspectives potentially relevant to their projects including:  global neoliberalization; transnationalism and transnational spaces; geographies of hope, fear and desire; feminist theory, citizenship, identity and subjectivity, actor/network theory, embodiment, subaltern studies and political ecology, as well as those identified by research teams.  In addition, we will also explore relevant methodological issues and approaches in migration research including: research design, quantitative/qualitative synergies and tensions, empirical/theoretical divisions, migrant narratives and critical ethnography,  cross-border collaborations, participatory appraisal, researcher  positionality and field work dilemmas, among others.  


  • Department of Geography and the Environment

    The University of Texas at Austin
    305 E. 23rd Street, A3100
    RLP 3.306
    Austin, TX 78712
    512-471-5116