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Chicano and Latin American Studies


The Chicano and Latin American Studies Department consists of faculty whose teaching and research expertise cover a broad spectrum, including anthropology, education, history, sociology, political science, Latin America, Latino literature, and the arts. 

Full Time Faculty:

Dr. Maria-Aparecida Lopes

Telephone: 559.278.8808 
Office: SS 216
Office Hours: Monday/Wednesday 11:00 a.m.- 12:00 p.m. and 2:00 p.m.-3:00 p.m.




Ph.D. in History, El Colegio de México (Mexico City, Mexico, 1996-1999), Dissertation: "Abigeos, bandidos sociales y 'malhechores facciosos'. Criminalidad y justicia en el estado de Chihuahua. 1876-1920," (Cattle Rustlers and Social Bandits: Criminality and Justice in the State of Chihuahua, Mexico, 1876-1920) 1999. Committee: Profs. Romana Falcón (Chair), Javier Garciadiego, Luis Aboites, and Leticia Mayer.

Research Interests:

For more than five years, Dr. Maria-Aparecida Lopes has been studying commercial relations between Mexico and the United States focusing on the livestock exchanges, from the late nineteenth century to the 1950s. Her article "Revolution and Livestock Economy in Northern Mexico" (Revolución y ganadería en el norte de México) published in 2008 by Historia Mexicana, won Honorable Mention for the category Twentieth Century Mexican History awarded by Mexican Committee of Historical Sciences (Comité Mexicano de Ciencias Históricas), Mexico, July 7, 2010.

Apart from her research on Mexico-U.S. relations, she has also published articles on the following topics: a comparison between the Brazilian and the Mexican independence movements; socioeconomic aspects of the development of the cattle industry in Mexico and Brazil; the creation and evolution of urban centers in South America; and the Brazilian land laws in the nineteenth century.

Publications or Papers:

Rio de Janeiro in theGlobal Meat Market, c. 1850 to c. 1930. How Fresh and Salted Meat Arrived at the Carioca Table. New York: Routledge, 2021.

Institutions and Interest Groups: Meat Provision in Mexico City, C. 1850–1967,” co-author Reynaldo de los Reyes Patiño, Mundo Agrario 21, no. 46 (2020). 

2017. “Escasez, epizootia y experimentos sindicales. El abasto de carne en la capital federal mexicana, 1929-1955,” (Scarcity, Epizootics and Unionism. The Supply of Meat in the Mexican Federal Capital, 1929-1955), in: Enriqueta Quiroz,Integración y desintegración del espacio económico mexicano: mercado interno y abastecimiento de las carnes desde la colonia al siglo XX, México: Instituto de Investigaciones Dr. José María Luis Mora, Consejo Nacional de Ciencia y Tecnología, pp. 295-330.

 2016. Mercados en Común. Estudios sobre conexiones transnacionales, negocios y diplomacia en las Américas (siglos XIX y XX), (Markets in Common. Studies in Transnational Connections, Business, and Diplomacy in the Americas, Nineteenth and Twentieth Centuries), co-editor María Cecilia Zuleta, México, El Colegio de México, 647 pp.

 2016. “Carne para ‘las masas hambrientas.’ Interconexiones del comercio de ganado vacuno en el Atlántico Norte, 1884-1914,” (Meat for ‘the Hungry Masses’, Cattle Trade in the North Atlantic, 1884-1914), in: Maria-Aparecida Lopes and María Cecilia Zuleta (editors), Mercados en Común. Estudios sobre Conexiones transnacionales, Negocios y Diplomacia en las Américas (siglos XIX y XX), México: El Colegio de México.

2015. “Struggles over an ‘Old, Nasty, and Inconvenient Monopoly’: Municipal Slaughterhouses and the Meat Industry in Rio de Janeiro, 1880-1920s”, Journal of Latin American Studies, vol. 47:2, pp. 349-376.

2012. "Borders, Trade, and Politics: Exchange between the United States and Mexican Cattle Industries, 1870-1947”, in collaboration with Paolo Riguzzi, Hispanic American Historical Review, Vol. 92:4, pp. 603-635.

2011. Consumo e abastecimento na história, Maria-Aparecida Lopes, Margarida Maria de Carvalho, and Denise Aparecida Soares Moura (editors), São Paulo: Editora Alameda.

2011. "'Que se cumplan los sagrados principios de la revolución': cambio y continuidad en la política de abasto de la carne en la ciudad de México," Mexico: Historia Mexicana, Vol. 60:4 April-June, pp. 2111-2155.

2005. De costumbres y leyes. Abigeato y derechos de propiedad en Chihuahua durante el porfiriato, Mexico: El Colegio de México/El Colegio de Michoacán.

Teaching Interests:

For the last five years, Professor Dr. Maria-Aparecida Lopes has been a faculty member in the Chicano and Latin American Studies and History Departments at California State University, Fresno, where she has been teaching a variety of undergraduate and graduate courses on Latin American history. She commenced her career in education as a high school teacher in the São Paulo public school system (Brazil). After finishing her PhD in Mexico, Dr. Lopes was a professor of U.S. and Latin American history at the State University of São Paulo for five years. She also taught a graduate course on Brazilian Historiography at Metropolitan Autonomous University, Mexico.

Dr. Annabella España-NájeraTelephone: 559.278.3020
Office: SS 222
Office Hours: Monday/Wednesday 12:00 p.m.-1:00p.m. book via calendly





Ph.D. and M.A. (Political Science) from the University of Notre Dame, Notre Dame, IN.

B.A. from the University of British Columbia, Vancouver, Canada.

Research Interests:

Dr. España-Nájera research interests are focused on contemporary political issues in Latin America. She is concerned with studying regimes and the challenges to consolidating and fortifying democracies in the region. Her research has focused on institution and institutionalization, especially in terms of party systems and political parties. She has analyzed what factors shape these institutions and what impact they in turn have on the quality of democracy in Latin America. Currently, her research interests have also sought to analyze the state in Central America, exploring the development of weak states and their consequences for questions of democracy and security in the region.

Dr. España-Nájera is also an active member of the World Cultures & Globalization Cohort at Fresno State University. For more information on the Cohort, click here.

Publications or Papers:

"Polarización en América Latina, comparando sistemas de partidos politicos e individuos a través del tiempo" Boletines Proyecto de Élites Parlamentarias Latinoamericanas"The Vote Share of New and Young Parties" (with Scott Mainwaring and Carlos Gervasoni), Kellogg Institute Working Paper Series, #368, University of Notre Dame, July 2010"Surveying the Field: Basic Graduate Training in Comparative Politics" (with Xavier Márquez and Paul Vasquez), APSA-CP Newsletter, 14:1: 28-34, Winter 2003.

Teaching Interests:

Dr. España-Nájera's teaching interests include contemporary issues in Latin America, in particular in how they relate to questions of regime and regime change, inequality and development, and institutions and institutionalization. Her classes adopt a comperative perspective, which use comparisons of countries or regions to gain a more in-depth understanding of processes of development and change.

Dr. Luis Fernando MaciasTelephone: 559.278.1095
Office: SS 227
Office Hours: On Sabbatical-Spring 2024





Ph.D.  Multicultural and Equity Studies in Education, The Ohio State University

M.A.  Cross Cultural and International Education, Bowling Green State University

B.A.  Spanish/Translation, University of Texas at El Paso

Publications or Papers:

Macías, L. F. (2022). Hall Pass: DACA recipients’ experiences “passing” in higher education. Equity & Excellence in Education, 55(1-2), 87-104.

Collet, B. A., & Macías, L. F. (2022). Sacred mobilisations: sanctuary churches and sanctuary schools. Compare: A Journal of Comparative and International Education, 52(6), 1015-1032.

Macías, L. F. (2018). The scheme game: How DACA recipients navigate barriers to higher education. Educational Studies, 54(6), 609-628.

Macías, L.F., Collet, B. (2016). Separated By Removal: Impact of parental deportation on U.S citizen children's educational goals. Diaspora, Indigenous, and Minority Education, 10(3), 169-181.

Teaching Interests:

Immigrant Education

Social Justice Education

Critical Multiculturalism

Latina/o/x Studies

Race and Ethnicity

Undocumented Studies

Immigration Studies

Dr. Mendez    Telephone: 559.278.0086
   Office: SS 215
   Office Hours: Tuesday/Thursday 11:00 a.m.-12:00 p.m.and by appointment 




Ph.D. in History, University of California, San Diego

M.A. in History, University of California, San Diego

B.A. in History, University of California, Berkeley

Research Interests

Dr. Méndez's main research interests are migration, labor, and the US-Mexico borderlands. Her doctoral dissertation, titled “Cheap for Whom? Migration, Farm Labor, and Social Reproduction in the Imperial Valley-Mexicali Borderlands, 1942-1969,” won the 2018 Chancellor’s Dissertation Award in the Division of Arts and Humanities at the University of California, San Diego, and the 2019 Herbert G. Gutman Prize for Outstanding Dissertation from the Labor and Working-Class History Association.

Publications or Papers

Méndez, Alina R. “Gendered Invisibility: Ethnic Mexican Women and the Bracero Program.” Women and Social Movements in the United States, 1600-2000 25 no. 2 (September 2021).

Méndez, Alina R. “More Than Victims or Villains: Representations of Mexican Migrant Men in the Imperial Valley-Mexicali Borderlands, 1942-1954.” California History 98 no. 3 (2021): 28-53.

Teaching Interests

Dr. Méndez's teaching interests include Chicanx/Latinx culture and history, labor and migration, the US-Mexico borderlands, and relational racial formation.

Telephone: 559.278.2239
Office: SS 226B
Office Hours: Tuesday/Thursday 11:45 a.m. -1:45 p.m., Tuesday 3:50 p.m. - 4:50 p.m.


The University of New Mexico, Ph.D. American Studies

Bowling Green State University, M.F.A. Creative Writing

The University of Texas at El Paso, B.A. English

Research Interests:

Cross-cultural Latin American and U.S. Latina/o ethnic studies and literature with a historical emphasis.

Dr. Torres   Telephone: 559.278.4115
  Office: SS 220
  Office Hours: 




UC Irvine, Ph.D. Anthropology


Dr. Victor Torres, Ph.D., is an anthropologist and Full Professor in the Department of Chicano and Latin American Studies at California State University, Fresno. His passion for Mexican folkloric dance began and flourished at UC Irvine, where he danced and directed throughout his B.A. and Ph.D. studies.  After completing his studies at UCI, he was recruited to Fresno State by highly esteemed Prof. Ernesto Martinez.  Prof. Martinez recruited Dr. Torres to succeed him as Director of  Los Danzantes de Aztlán, the Mexican dance program he founded in the department of Chicano and Latin American Studies.

Los Danzantes de Aztlán is the only Mexican folkloric dance troupe in the CSU system to be recognized as an official ambassador of the University. This status was recently reaffirmed in 2013 by former President John Welty.  Los Danzantes de Aztlán is a highly respected Mexican dance troupe in California, in the Southwest, and in Mexico. Under Dr. Torres’ tutelage, the troupe has earned top honors in international and national competitions. The success and professionalism of the troupe under his direction has resulted in the troupe being considered an “associate” group of the  Ballet Folclorico Nacional de Mexico de Silvia Lozano (BFNM). More recently, the troupe was selected to perform in the prestigious  San Francisco Ethnic Dance Festival – the largest ethnic dance festival in the nation, which runs for the entire month of June.

Dr. Torres served on the Board of Directors of the  Associación Nacional de Grupos Folklóricos (ANGF) for 6 years (1997-2003), two of them as Vice-President.  He is also the founder of the annual “Festival de Los  Danzantes” folklórico conference at Fresno State, as well as the founder of the annual “Cal State Folklórico Show (which features various California State University groups). Dr. Torres also serves on the  Danzantes del Valle Advisory Committee for Arte Americas –Fresno’s major Latino cultural center.

Part-Time Faculty

Name  Contact  Office Hours
Dr. George Fontes Telephone: 559.278.6506
Office: SS 129
Monday/Wednesday 10:00 a.m.-12:00 p.m. (in person)
Dr. Matthew Ford Telephone: 559.278.6506
Office: SS 129

Tuesday/Thursday 12:30 p.m.-1:30 p.m.

Dr. Laura Gomez-Alvarez

Telephone: 559.278.6506
Office: SS 217

Thursdays 2:00 p.m.-4:00 p.m.
Phillip Gonzales Telephone: 559.278.6506
Office: SS 129

Monday 9:00 a.m.-10:00 a.m. (face to face class)
Wednesdays 9:00a.m.-10:00a.m. via Zoom (online class)
or by appointment

Irene Robles-Huerta Telephone: 559.278.6506
Office: SS 217

Tuesday 1:00 p.m.- 2:00 p.m. and by appointment 

Dr. Elvia Rodriguez
Telephone: 559.278.6506
Office: NG 141E
By appointment