Nina Lozano, associate professor of communication studies, was recently honored as the recipient of the National Communication Association (NCA) Feminist and Women’s Studies Division’s 2018 Scholar-Activist Award, in honor of her valuable contribution to feminist studies and her tireless activism in service of eradicating gendered violence. Lozano’s scholarship, activism, and teaching fully represent all of the qualities the award recognizes, in particular how multiple systems of oppression/exploitation interlock in her work/activism and the integration of scholarly insights in her research and teaching with activist interventions.
Grounded in the study of rhetoric, feminist and labor theory, and social movements, Lozano’s work addresses interlocking systems of oppression, particularly along the axes of race, gender, and class. She also strikes an interdependent relationship between research, teaching, and activism with all three feeding the other. Her book, “Not One More! Feminicidio on the Border,” with The Ohio State University Press, is forthcoming in February of 2019.
In accepting her award at the NCA Annual Conference, held this year in Salt Lake City, Utah, Lozano said, “I dedicate this award to the disappeared and murdered women and girls in Ciudad Juárez, and the family members and activists whom I continue to work alongside with, on the ground, for justicia. I am honored and humbled.”
According to associate professor of communication studies Kyra Pearson, who nominated Lozano for the award, “For the last fifteen years, Lozano’s primary scholarly and activist pursuits have focused on gendered violence, and in particular the murdered women and girls on the US-Mexico border. More than 2000 femicidios have occurred since 1993, a number that continues to grow. Some are as young as 10 years old. Neglected by state officials and mainstream US media, this injustice has received scant attention, despite the fact that, as Lozano’s work demonstrates, the presence of US manufacturing plants post- NAFTA (i.e., maquiladoras) has created economic incentives to abduct young Mexican women. The Mexican government has inadequately responded as well, even in the area most affected, Ciudad Juárez.”
Pearson continued, “In the face of state sanctioned neglect, Lozano has made seven trips to Mexico to conduct research on the ground consisting of interviewing family members of the women and girls who were murdered; working alongside family members and activists to paint murals on street buildings to publicize the femicidios and honor the lives lost; walking in the desert to locate bones and other traces of evidence of their bodies; and photographing fields, street corners, phone booths, and other public spaces marked by memorials for the thousands who were killed.”
Additionally, Lozano created numerous opportunities and an infrastructure for LMU students to become informed and involved, even as activists themselves. With LMU’s Center for Service and Action, she organized three Alternative Break trips to Ciudad Juárez. These trips enabled about three dozen LMU students to learn about the femicides and participate in activism around this injustice.
Above: Lozano, pictured right, at the NCA 2018 Awards Ceremony in Salt Lake City, UT.