Undergraduate Research & Scholarships

Samantha Cruz Social Science

“The only Native Americans, not Native to their land”: Yaqui Diasporic Placemaking on the San Diego Borderlands

Scholars Journal

Native to Sonora, México, Yaquis also have histories along the Rio Yaqui River and throughout the US-Mexico borderlands. Strategic efforts of erasure make Tucson, Arizona the only federally recognized Yaqui ancestral homelands in the US, although San Diego is also home to one of the largest yaqui populations. Samantha’s project identifies the ways San Diego Yaquis experience and engage in diasporic placemaking currently and historically. This summer she will review archival documents, conduct interviews, and photograph urban transformations in San Diego. Samantha will then apply her data towards her senior thesis, the curation of a digital archive, and create a map tracing patterns within the San Diego diaspora. Samantha’s research contributes to Yaqui scholarship created by Yaqui scholars that exemplifies previously underrepresented US Yaqui diaspora communities.
Photo of Samantha Cruz
Major: Art Practice
Mentor: Shari Huhndorf, Ethnic Studies
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