I am a Professor of Latin American and Latino Studies at the University of California, Santa Cruz and Director of the Dolores Huerta Research Center for the Americas.   My research focuses on young people’s contributions to social change through activism and social movements in North and South America.  In addition to writing about young activists’ insights and critical practices, I am also interested in how adults and adult-led organizations and political institutions engage with young people, and how young activists interact with these institutions.   Through my research, I seek to create more equitable intergenerational relationships and to expand young people’s collective power and political influence within their communities and the world.

The Kids Are in Charge: Activism and Power in Peru’s Movement of Working Children (2019), explores the possibilities and challenges for creating horizontal intergenerational social movements.   Founded in 1976, the Peruvian movement of working children has fought to redefine age-based roles in society, including defending children’s right to work.  In this book, I explore how the movement’s discourses, practices, and institutional structures foster a radical re-imagining of childhood and democratize intergenerational relationships.

Rebel Girls: Youth Activism and Social Change Across the Americas  (2011) introduces readers to a diverse and vibrant transnational community of teenage girl activists in the San Francisco Bay Area, Mexico City, Caracas, Buenos Aires, and Vancouver.  It explores how teenage girls construct activist identities, rejecting and redefining girlhood and claiming political authority for youth in the process.