Christofer Rodelo

picture of Christofer  Rodelo

Assistant Professor, Chicano/Latino Studies
School of Social Sciences

B.A., Yale University, 2015, American Studies
B.A., Yale University, 2015, Ethnicity, Race & Migration
M.A., Harvard University, 2017, English
Ph.D., Harvard University, 2022, American Studies


University of California, Irvine
359 Social Science Tower
Mail Code: 5100
Irvine, CA 92697
Research Interests
Theater and Performance History; Latinx and Black Latinx Literary and Cultural Studies; 19th Century American Literary and Cultural History; Relational Studies of Race and Ethnicity; Disability Studies; Feminist and Queer Theory
Research Abstract
I am a performance and literary historian who examines Latinx and Black Latinx expressive cultures in the nineteenth and twentieth century. My research focuses on the role of the spectacular body—as represented in literature, drama, popular culture, and historical memory— in shaping U.S. formations of race, gender, nation, and migration. Trained in American Studies, I use interdisciplinary methods, including archival research, performance analysis and close literary reading, to reconstruct aesthetic genealogies and situate them within racial formations at national and transnational levels. While rooted in the past, I highlight the influence of historical performance on contemporary cultural practices and political actions. My work charts new directions for critical race studies scholarship at the intersection of Latinx & Black Latinx Studies, Theater & Performance Studies, and U.S. Literary & Cultural History.

My current book project, Exhibiting Black and Brown: Race, Spectacle, and the Archive of Latinx Performance, illuminates a genealogy and critique of Latinx racialization based on spectacular displays of the body within U.S. performance culture from the 1840s to the early 1900s. It historically indexes 19th century minoritarian aesthetic practices, theorizes the affective and material contours of whiteness, blackness and indigeneity, and rubs together the methodological tenets of literary and performance studies for an archivally-grounded reading of textual, performative, and visual ephemera.
Short Biography
Christofer A. Rodelo is an assistant professor of Chicano/Latino Studies at the University of California, Irvine. He earned his Ph.D. in American Studies at Harvard University, with secondary fields in Latinx Studies and Studies of Women, Gender, and Sexuality. He holds an MA in English from Harvard, and a BA in American Studies and Ethnicity, Race & Migration from Yale University.
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