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Dr. Vanessa J. Aguilar

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Dr. Vanessa J. Aguilar is an Assistant Professor in Latinx Literature at New Mexico State University. She received a dual major Ph.D. in Chicano/Latino Studies and English from Michigan State University. In addition, she holds a certification in Caribbean and Latin American Studies. As a Kansas City native, she earned a B.A. in English from the University of Missouri-Kansas City and an M.A. in English from Emporia State University. While growing up in the Midwest, she saw a lack of BIPOC representation in classroom syllabi leading her drive to educate students on diverse literatures. Dr. Aguilar’s interdisciplinary background informs her approach to pedagogy and emphasis on creating an inclusive classroom. Her primary research centers on Chicanx/Latinx knowledge production in literature. Her interests oscillate between archival research, speculative fiction, bruja/conjure feminisms, feminist epistemologies, spirituality, and contemporary young adult literature.


  • Dual Ph.D. in Chicano/Latino Studies and English, Michigan State University, 2023
  • Caribbean and Latin American Studies Certification
  • M.A. in English, Emporia State University, 2018
  • B.A. in English, University of Missouri- Kansas City, 2015 

Book Chapter Publications:

“Crafting Social Justice: Seeking Protection and Redistributing Unequal Power Through Brujería.” Voices of Mujerismos, eds. Amarilys Estrella and Melissa Maldonado-Salcedo. Lexington Press Books, (In-Press expected 2024).

Conjurando poderes de existencia: Depictions of Brujería in the Latin American Speculative Fiction Series, Siempre Bruja.” Routledge Handbook to Co-Futurisms. eds Taryne Taylor, Chattopadhyay Bodi, Isaiah Lavender III, and Grace Dillon. Routledge Press, 2023.

Digital Peer-Reviewed Publications:

Aguilar, Vanessa, Stephany Bravo, Todd Craig, Jared Milburn, Emery Petchauer, Eric Rodriguez, Cecilia Valenzuela, and Magnolia Landa-Posas. “Testimonios and Turntables: Claiming Our Narratives through Sound and Space.” Kairos: A Journal of Rhetoric, Technology, and Pedagogy 26, no. 1 (2020).





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