Mexington, Kentucky Course

The Mexington, Kentucky course is wrapping up. Most of my blogging time has been spent there this semester, so I stepped away from typing up much of my notes as the formal processes of research are getting under way. I have already collected a substantial set of data to work with, rich observations, and a huge trove of high school students writing. I’m also currently working on volume two of the LOL book.

But I need to share more about this Mexington, Kentucky class, the success it has been, and how I hope it has affected students. The website can be found here. Students’ final blog portfolios are due next week, a week from yesterday actually, and I’ll have more to share then. But I will say their projects as I understand them at the moment sound great.

The class recently was also featured in a podcast.

The course explores the Mexicanidad of Lexington, Kentucky—what we’ll call Mexington. The Mexican population of Lexington has grown by over 200% in the last two decades. Though Kentucky was not historically considered one of the traditional hubs of Mexican migration in the United States, this area of the South has experienced an increased regional presence of a transnational community with connections ranging from Baja California Norte to Chiapas. At the micro level, we will study local issues dealing with Mexican migration, activism, race, and representations in Mexington and Kentucky in general. At the macro level, we will seek to frame, conceptualize, interpret, and critique the transnational aspects of Mexicanidad in the United States and Mexico including aspects of migration to the “Nuevo South,” citizenship, detention, community building, and strategies of public rhetorics. There will be one field outing for the course (March 1), and a few events coinciding with Viva Mexico, the Year of Mexico at the UK.

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