Chicana-Chicano Studies

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CSUN Chicana and Chicano Studies Department


CSUN CHS Department calls for accountability for the harm caused by
LA City Councilmembers and LA Labor Federation President

The CSU Northridge Chicana/o Studies Department condemns the racist, misogynistic, anti-immigrant, violent, and homophobic conversations between former Los Angeles City Council President and Councilmember Nury Martinez, Councilmember Kevin de León, Councilmember Gil Cedillo, and former Los Angeles County Federation of Labor President Ron Herrera. As a step toward accountability for the harm they caused we call for the immediate resignations of Councilmembers Kevin de León and Gil Cedillo. We acknowledge that Nury Martinez has resigned from the City Council and Ron Herrera from the LA Labor Federation.

As one of the largest Chicana/o Studies Departments in the nation it is our responsibility to respond forcefully when elected officials and others engage in hate speech against members of the African American and Indigenous communities, as well as of other marginalized communities. It is especially urgent that we raise our voices when the perpetrators are Chicanx/Latinx and are in positions of power and privilege to act on their hate speech.  As educators we are also deeply troubled by the racism and violent speech directed at the young adopted African American child of Councilman Bonin.

The history of racism, colorism, sexism, and homophobia within Chicanx/Latinx communities is directly tied to the colonization of the Americas. These colonized ideas and views are deeply ingrained within many of our families and communities and must be proactively addressed. We have a responsibility to reflect upon and to critically analyze the socio-political systems which are the source of these views and ideas. We must work with humility, compassion, and mindfulness to change our behaviors and speech, and to be true allies to BIPOC, immigrant, and LGBTQ+ communities. We also insist that our elected officials and community leaders be held accountable for their actions.

We share many of the same social and environmental justice struggles with Black, Zapotec, Mayan, Native American, Indigenous, Chicanx/Latinx, Central American, Asian American, Middle Eastern, and LGBTQ+ communities. Our very futures are intertwined with one another and the need for authentic solidarity among each other is urgent. We call for unity, solidarity, and the continued struggle for social justice in Los Angeles and beyond.

In solidarity,

CSU Northridge Chicana/o Studies Department



Chicana and Chicano Studies is an Area Studies field that advances a critical understanding of the Chicana/o and Latina/o experience in the United States.  Courses reflect a multidisciplinary approach to the understanding of Chicana/o and Latina/o histories, politics, culture, language and education.

Chicana/o Studies was established in 1969 in response to the educational needs of Chicana/o students. At the height of the Civil Rights Movement, Dr. Rodolfo Acuña was recruited by students, faculty, and community and became the Department's founding faculty member. Courses were designed to provide students with an awareness of the social, political, economic, historical and cultural realities in our society. It  was structured as an inter-disciplinary, area studies department in order to offer a Chicana/o critique and perspective within the traditional disciplines.

Initially, the mission of the department was primarily to meet the needs of the Chicana/o student. In the intervening years that mission has been broadened to meet the needs of the credential student preparing to teach in our schools and to provide a multicultural and enriching experience to all students in the university. A Master of Arts program was subsequently developed and now prepares students for academic, public service, education, artistic and cultural performance careers.

As demographics change, the Department has compiled a critical mass of faculty, a community of scholars and practitioners in their respective fields, to prepare US students as well as exchange and foreign students to critically assess cultural expression, power relations, intellectual inquisitiveness, and the process of student and community self actualization in an increasingly global world.

Currently the Department of Chicana and Chicano Studies at California State University, Northridge is the largest of its kind in the country housing 25 full time and 35 part time professors. Between 160-170 class sections are offered every semester.

detail of mural showing student and faculty protesters