Querencia: Leveraging Place in Latinx Arizona


Join College of Integrative Sciences and Arts faculty members Rafael Martínez Orozco, assistant professor of Southwest Borderlands, and Vanessa Fonseca-Chávez, associate professor of English and associate dean for diversity, equity and Inclusion, as they explore the concept of querencia — a love of or attachment to place — in rural and urban locales.

Both presenters locate multiple cultural sites in Arizona as the premise for understanding the complex relationships of mapping and marking place. Martínez locates and identifies Latinx barrios in Mesa, Arizona, operating as querencias at the fringes. He does so by identifying the ways in which Latinx migrants develop an attachment to place by cultivating (in)formal networks that contribute to the city’s socioeconomic, political and cultural fabric. Fonseca-Chávez will discuss how rural Hispano communities rooted in eastern Arizona embody querencia through economic migration and storytelling.

Their work illuminates the ways that we can incorporate ASU’s design aspiration of Leveraging our Place to draw attention to the long-standing presence of Hispanic and Latinx communities in our state. Their goal is to demonstrate how ethnic and cultural communities craft, mark and create space through storytelling practices rooted in querencia.

This event is part of the inaugural Humanities Week at ASU, a collaboration of ASU humanities units, centers and institutes in hosting special events to highlight the ways in which we explore the human adventure across time, culture and place. Choose to attend this presentation in-person at ASU Polytechnic campus in Santa Catalina Hall, room 355, or via Zoom.

Photo: calle16 mural by Lalo Cota, Flickr

Faculty of Interdisciplinary Humanities and Communication, CISA
Vanessa Fonseca-Chávez
Santa Catalina Hall, Room 355
Polytechnic campus

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