Areas of Specialization
Gender and the global economy, Latino/a Migration to the 'Nuevo South," Citizenship and neoliberalism in the Americas
B.A., Oberlin College
M.A. and Ph.D., the University of California, Davis
Honors and Awards
Plumeri Award for Faculty Excellence, 2010
My research explores ways in which everyday people engage with economic and political globalization and how gender shapes experiences of work, political organizing, and transnational migration. Throughout my academic career I have pursued an interest in the politics and social conditions of Latin American societies and Latinos/as in the United States. My current research examines recent transnational migration to Williamsburg, VA, the barriers that migrants face in gaining full social membership, and the ways in which the larger community has responded to the arrival of these newcomers. Another theme of my current work is the problems and possibilities of community-based or activist research methodologies.
Professor Mendez has published articles in such journals as Social Problems, Mobilization, Labor Studies Journal, and Gender and Society. Her book From the Revolution to the Maquiladoras: Gender, Labor and Globalization in Nicaragua (2005 Duke University Press) received the 2008 Annual Book Award from the Political Economy of the World System Section of the American Sociological Association as well as an honorable mention from the Global Division of the Society for the Study of Social Problems.