Seizing the Moment: Learning from Humanely Relational and Interdisciplinary Soundscapes

  • Ana Elizabeth Rosas Temple University Press


Lessons learned from George Sánchez have been at the heart of the work I do with undergraduate students at the University of California, Irvine (UCI). Many of them face enormous stress as a result of being (or being related to) undocumented Latina/o immigrants in the United States. During the 2011 Winter quarter, several of those students conferred with me about their intention to invite fellow UCI undergraduate students enrolled in our “Histories of the U.S.-Mexico Borderlands” course to join UCI Dreamers. This is an undergraduate student group that supports undocumented immigrant students at our campus as they struggle to finance, complete, and derive full social and intellectual benefit from their undergraduate education. This initiative situated our Chicana/o history course as a productive common ground, a space for this generation of women and men to act in support of each other. Attending UCI Dreamers meetings was not an automatic or random decision but rather the outcome of a series of interactions, discussions, and experiences. Prominent among these was our consideration of music and musical soundscapes that have influenced how life in the US–Mexico borderlands is lived and discussed.