Professor Martínez is an Associate Professor at Cornell University’s ILR School, where she teaches courses in Immigration and American Labor and Working-Class History. She received her PhD in U.S. History from The University of Texas at Austin. Her dissertation—Making the Modern Migrant: Work, Community, and Struggle in the Federal Migratory Labor Camp Program, 1935-1947—was awarded the Barnes F. Lathrop Prize for Best Dissertation in the Department of History. It was also awarded "runner up" for the Best Dissertation Prize by Labor History (Routledge). Her current research examines the role of the federal migrant labor camp program in the lives of farmworker families across the country. More generally, she's interested in the intersections between labor and citizenship, particularly immigrants’ and migrants’ social movements and cross-racial organizing efforts for improved living and working conditions. She is completing a book manuscript on this topic titled, An Experiment in Democracy: Race, Rights, and Reform in the U.S. Migrant Labor Camp Program, 1935-1946 (forthcoming with the University of Pennsylvania Press, “Politics and Culture in Modern America” book series). Her research has received funding from the Ford Foundation, the Smithsonian, and the Woodrow Wilson National Fellowship Foundation, among others.
Dr. Martínez-Matsuda's research examines the history of the Farm Security Administration’s Migratory Labor Camp Program and its role in the lives of diverse migrant farmworker families across the United States during the mid-1930s and 1940s.
Dr. Martínez-Matsuda's teaching fields of interest and expertise include: Twentieth-Century U.S. Social and Cultural History, The Great Depression and the New Deal, Immigration/Migration History, Chicana/o and Latina/o Studies, U.S.-Mexico Borderlands Studies, Women’s History, and Comparative Race and Ethnic Studies.