Anthony Castro

Anthony Castro
Mentor: Dr. Kendal Broad-Wright
College of Liberal Arts and Sciences
 
"I wanted the experience of envisioning and finishing my own research project on a topic that enthralls me. I began thinking about this project during my work at the Institute of Hispanic-Latino Cultures. I saw the importance of storytelling and taking pride in one's own marginalized identities through my conversations with the Director at the time, Dr. Eric Castillo, an immigrant rights community organizer and amazing individual. The work that I and other embajadores did in planning events for the University of Florida to learn more about the Hispanic-Latino community and social justice greatly influenced my love and vision for the project."

Major

Women's Studies; Anthropology

Minor

Latin American Studies; History

Research Interests

  • Racial Justice
  • Immigrant Rights
  • Queer Activism

Academic Awards

  • UF University Scholars Program

Organizations

  • Pride Student Union
  • Gatorship
  • Reitz Scholars

Volunteer

  • Florida Alternative Breaks

Hobbies and Interests

  • Video Games
  • Comics
  • Movies
  • Anime

Research Description

The Role of Storytelling in Queering Immigrant Rights

In my research, “The Role of Storytelling in Queering Immigrant Rights,” I will investigate the use of storytelling in undocumented immigrant rights organizations, specifically as it relates to queer (non-heteronormative or gender-binary) immigrants, and how stories are used to overcome the stigmatization of identities. I will investigate the following questions in my research: How is storytelling used as a community organizing tool to advance the discourse on immigrant rights activism and comprehensive immigration reform? How does storytelling act as a form of empowerment for those sharing their narratives? How do the stories of queer undocumented immigrants shape both the immigrant rights and queer activism movements to create greater representation of the intersection of both identities? What factors encourage and enable people to disclose their undocumented status and/or queer identity in either movement? I will conduct a narrative analysis of the stories of queer undocumented immigrants gathered from blogs and websites, such as Define American. I will conduct interviews with queer immigrant activists to hear how they discuss the importance of stories as a means of resistance. I will use news articles, magazine publications and other print sources written in English and/or Spanish to augment my analysis, as well as my analysis on other organizations that focus on queer immigrant rights, such as United We Dream’s Queer Undocumented Immigrant Project, and Dream Activist’s LGBTQ Student Caucus. The results of my analysis will add important knowledge to our understandings of the intersections of sexualities and citizenship, and to our knowledge of social movement stories. A better understanding of storytelling as an organizational tool in queer immigrant rights facilitates coalition building between the immigrant rights movement and queer rights movement that can bring about a better vision of comprehensive immigration reform.