I am an associate professor of English and Latina and Latino Studies at Northwestern University, where I teach courses on Latinx literature, immigration and US culture, contemporary US literature, and modern poetry.
My research centers on US Latinx literature from the late nineteenth century to the present, with particular interests in the relationships among race, class, gender, and literary institutions. I am currently working on a book (tentatively) titled Invisible Hands: Print Culture, Class, and US Latino Modernism that examines the prodigious amount of literature emerging from Spanish-language newspapers and magazines in the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries. If publishing houses and universities are the most important literary institutions of the late twentieth century, what can we say about newspapers and magazines as their analogues in an earlier era?
I am the author of Ends of Assimilation: The Formation of Chicano Literature, which was published by Oxford University Press in 2015. Ends of Assimilation traces the development of Chicana/o literature in relation to sociological accounts of assimilation. I show how social scientific discourses imagine themselves to be transparent, while in fact they produce and shape the very culture they attempt to describe. Literature provides an important counter-discourse to the degree that it understands itself as producing, and not merely documenting, new cultural forms.
I have also authored essays in such journals as Aztlán: A Journal of Chicano Studies, American Literature, MELUS, and American Literary History. Find me (@jalbacutler) on Twitter and LibraryThing.