Saavedra is a historian specializing in 19th Century U.S. History, Borderlands History, History of the U.S. West, Chicana/o History, and Gender and Sexuality History. Her research interests include the intersection of race, power, identity, colonialism, nationalism, gender and sexuality.
Ph.D. History, University of Texas El Paso, 2013
M.A. Borderlands History, University of Texas El Paso, 2003
B.A. History & Chicana/o Studies, Pitzer College, 2001
Her recently released book, Pasadena Before the Roses: Race, Identity, and Land Use in Southern California, 1771-1890, (University of Arizona, 2018) examines and details the social and cultural history of how Spanish, Mexican, American and Indigenous groups’ competing visions of land use affected the formation of racial and cultural identity in Pasadena, California, during this period. This work reconceptualizes how culturally subjective ideas about race, masculinity, and visions of optimal land use became tangible representations of political projects of conquest, expansion, and empire building.
She has published on topics ranging from Chicana Feminism, Chicana/o History, LGBTQ History, U.S. History, and Borderlands History. Her current research agenda reflects work on several projects including her second full length book tentatively titled Living la Mala Vida: Transgressive Femininities, Morality, and Nationalism in Mexican California, 1810-1850 a study that (re)defines masculinity, femininity, gender, and sexuality within Mexican nationalism and concepts of political and social citizenship. Other research in progress includes, a study examining the influence of Chicana lesbian feminist theory and methodology on the writing of Chicana/o and U.S.-Mexico Borderlands history and studies, a tracing of the development of the Texas sodomy law and the policing of homosexuality during the nineteenth and early twentieth century, and a study of female masculinity in the nineteenth century U.S.-Mexico Borderlands.
WGS 303 Women and Gender in American History
Focus: Women, Gender, and Sexuality in American History, 1941-1970
MW Delivered Remotely
WGS 422/522 Sexuality Studies
Focus: Defining Deviance
MW Delivered Remotely