Label Me Latina/o 2021 Volume XI: Special Issue on YA Latinx Literature

June 6, 2021 edited by Michele Shaul and Kathryn Quinn-Sánchez
Filed under: Special Issue on YA Latinx Literature 

Introduction: The State of Latinx Young Adult Literature

By Guest Editors Trevor Boffone and Cristina Herrera

Trevor Boffone is a Lecturer in the Women’s, Gender & Sexuality Studies Program at the University of Houston. His work using Dubsmash and TikTok with his students has been featured on Good Morning AmericaABC NewsInside Edition, and Access Hollywood, among numerous national and local media platforms. He is the author of Renegades: Digital Dance Cultures from Dubsmash to TikTok. He is the co-editor of Encuentro: Latinx Performance for the New American TheaterNerds, Goths, Geeks, and Freaks: Outsiders in Chicanx and Latinx Young Adult LiteratureShakespeare and Latinidad; and Seeking Common Ground: Latinx and Latin American Theatre and Performance.

Cristina Herrera earned her PhD in English from Claremont Graduate University and is Professor of Chicano and Latin American Studies at California State University, Fresno. Her book, ChicaNerds in Chicana Young Adult Literature: Brown and Nerdy (2020) was published in Routledge’s Children’s Literature and Culture Series. Cristina is also the author of the 2014 study Contemporary Chicana Literature: (Re)Writing the Maternal Script.

Performativity in Yuyi Morales’s Dreamers

By Lettycia Terrones

Lettycia Terrones serves as Learning and Instructional Services Librarian at California State University Los Angeles and is completing a Ph.D. in Library and Information Sciences at the University of Illinois at Urbana Champaign.

It’s her Goooaaalll!!!!!!: Centering Latina Athletes in Yamile Saied Méndez’s Furia

By Melissa Castillo Planas

Melissa Castillo Planas is an Assistant Professor of English at Lehman College specializing in Latinx Literature and Culture. She is the author of the poetry collection Coatlicue Eats the Apple, editor of the anthology ¡Manteca!: An Anthology of Afro-Latin@ Poets, co-editor of La Verdad: An International Dialogue on Hip Hop Latinidades and co-author of the novel Pure Bronx. Her most recent book project, A Mexican State of Mind: New York City and the New Borderlands of Culture, examines the creative worlds and cultural productions of Mexican migrants in New York City after 9/11. Her second book of poetry, Chingona Rules, is forthcoming with Finishing Line Press in August 2021. To learn more visit

Imagining the Future: The (Im)Possibilities of Queerness in Two Latinx Speculative Young Adult Novels

By Cristina Rhodes

Cristina Rhodes is an Assistant Professor of Ethnic American Literature at Shippensburg University of Pennsylvania. Her primary research focus is Latinx children’s and young adult literature, with a special emphasis on the body. She is currently working on a manuscript-length project that engages with questions of bodily transformation in non-realist Latinx youth literature.

Alien Orientations and Disruptions in William Alexander’s Ambassador (2014)

By María J. Durán

María J. Durán is an Assistant Professor of Latinx Cultural Studies at Brandeis University. Her research focuses on the body, political agency, and the performance of resistance in 20th and 21st century U.S. Latinx cultural productions. Her other research interests include Latinx theater, third world feminisms, critical theory, and multiethnic American literature. Durán is currently working on her solo-authored monograph, which examines structural violence, grief, and healing in contemporary Latinx theater and performance. As a first-generation Latina, she is committed to mentoring under-represented students for student retention and success.

“He doesn’t talk:” Silence, Trauma, and Fathers in Aristotle and Dante

Discover the Secrets of the Universe and I Am Not Your Perfect Mexican Daughter

By M. Roxana Loza

Roxana Loza is a 4th year PhD student at UT Austin working on her prospectus. Her dissertation project will focus on children and immigration in contemporary Latinx children’s and YA literature. Her B.A. from Rice University was in English, French, and Psychology and her M.A. in Children’s Literature from Kansas State University. She is currently learning how to be a graduate student and a mom to an 9-month-old baby.

Confronting the Shadow-Beast: A Young Chicana’s Development of La Facultad Consciousness in Kelly Parra’s YA Novel Graffiti Girl

By Laura M. López

Laura Marie López is an Assistant Professor of English at the University of the Incarnate Word in San Antonio, Texas. She has spent over twenty years working in higher education as a researcher, program administrator, and faculty member at Hispanic-Serving Institutions. Dr. Lopez has taught college writing and literature for the past thirteen years in San Antonio and the Rio Grande Valley. She holds a Ph.D. in English with a focus on Latinx Literature and Rhetorical Studies at the University of Texas at San Antonio. Her dissertation examines working-poor Chicanas in contemporary young adult literature.

Daniel José Older on the Shadowshaper Cypher Series: Part I

Interviewed by Taryne Jade Taylor

Taryne Jade Taylor is an Assistant Professor of Humanities and Composition at Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University where she also serves as the coordinator for the Latin American Studies minor. Her research focuses on the politics of representation in speculative fiction, particularly feminist science fiction and Latinx futurisms. Dr. Taylor is currently co-editing The Routledge Handbook to Alternative Futurisms with Grace Dillon, Isiah Lavender III, and Bodhisattva Chattopadhyay. She is an associate editor for the Journal of the Fantastic in the Arts, editor of the Routledge book series Studies in Global Genre Fiction, Vice Chair of the BIPOC Committee for the International Association of the Fantastic in the Arts, and a juror for the Theodore Sturgeon Memorial Award for the best short science fiction of the year.


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