Miroslava Chavez-Garcia


Contact Phone


Office Location

1709 South Hall


Ph.D, Professor, Department of Chicana/o Studies: Chicana/o & Latina/o History, Chicana/o & Latina/o Studies, Race & Juvenile Justice, Latinas in the U.S., Latina/o Youths in Global Perspective, United States-Mexico Border, Spanish Borderlands, Qualitative Research Methods


Miroslava Chávez-García is Professor of History at the University of California, Santa Barbara, and holds affiliations in the Departments of Chicana/o Studies and Feminist Studies. Author of Negotiating Conquest: Gender and Power in California, 1770s to 1880s (Tucson, 2004) and States of Delinquency: Race and Science in the Making of California’s Juvenile Justice System (Berkeley, 2012), Miroslava’s most recent book, Migrant Longing: Letter Writing across the U.S.-Mexico Borderlands (Chapel Hill, 2018), is a history of migration, courtship, and identity as told through more than 300 personal letters exchanged across the U.S.-Mexico borderlands among family members and friends. Most recently, in 2020, the book was selected as a 2019 Choice Outstanding Academic Title and in 2019 it won the Western Association of Women’s Historians Barbara “Penny” Kanner Award to honor the book that illustrates the use of a specific set of primary sources (such as diaries, letters, and interviews). Her essay, “Migrant Longing, Courtship, and Gendered Identity in the U.S.-Mexico Borderlands,” published by the Western History Quarterly in Summer 2016, received the 2017 Western Association of Women’s Historians Judith Lee Ridge prize and the 2017 Bolton-Cutter Award from the Western History Association for the best article on Spanish Borderlands history. Miroslava has mentored and continues to mentor many students and colleagues through the academic pipeline and beyond. She has served on numerous boards and committees.



Miroslava’s latest project, “‘The Greening of Hate’: The Environmental Movement, Population Control, and the Mainstreaming of Immigration Restriction and Exclusion,” examines and analyzes how advocates for the environment used growing fears over expanding global populations and depletion of the natural world’s resources in the 1960s to popularize and institutionalize immigration exclusion in the United States. The focus is on how a small yet politically and economically powerful group of people influenced mainstream environmental organizations to spread anti-immigrant sentiment and to pass increasingly draconian immigration policies and practices aimed at closing the door to people of color from around the world. Through a close analysis of thousands of pages of personal correspondence, internal memos, scholarly and popular writings, reports, and pamphlets, court cases and legislation, and oral interviews, among other sources, “The ‘Greening of Hate’” argues that immigration restrictionists have been effective in capturing and reframing environmental arguments to advance their agenda of immigration control and containment. Miroslava’s work shows that they not only infiltrated environmentalist spaces but also established a number of extremist, race-based, anti-immigrant organizations that continue to have power and influence in Washington today.


For an update listing of her publications, see: https://ucsb.academia.edu/MiroslavaChavezGarcia