Document Type



Master of Arts (MA)



First Advisor's Name

Ana Luszczynska

First Advisor's Committee Title

Committee Chair

Second Advisor's Name

Anne Castro

Second Advisor's Committee Title

Committee Member

Third Advisor's Name

Michael Grafals

Third Advisor's Committee Title

Committee Member


Anzaldua, Deconstruction, psychoanalysis, trauma, Chicano/a, affect, self

Date of Defense



Gloria Anzaldua’s Borderlands/La Frontera and Light in the Dark/Luz en lo Oscuro are widely acknowldged as groundbreaking texts across Latinx literary canons, invoking selfhood, spirituality, activism, and politics as a queer woman of color writer.

Her language around self-dispersion is still undertheorized in what it owes to traumatic experiences discoverable in the self, body, world, and culture Anzaldua hails from. The extent of colonizing and kyriarchal damage in her work has been recognized; but the exact character of how these breakages and corresponding imperatives to regenerate oneself resemble a traumatic shock remains to be written about.

This thesis sketches frameworks appropriate to the task, employing phenomenology, deconstruction, psychoanalysis, and theories of trauma and testimony alongside Anzaldua. Connections between each intellectual movement are uncovered in juxtaposition with Anzaldua’s texts, and novel readings arise with respect to Anzaldua’s worldview and the internal logic of death, pain, and rebirth unique to her experiences.





Rights Statement

Rights Statement

In Copyright. URI:
This Item is protected by copyright and/or related rights. You are free to use this Item in any way that is permitted by the copyright and related rights legislation that applies to your use. For other uses you need to obtain permission from the rights-holder(s).