Judith Rodríguez specializes in multi-disciplinary approaches to literary theory, Latinx Studies, and Caribbean philosophical thought. Specifically, her work draws together research in Puerto Rican aesthetics and performance studies with Black studies and Black feminist theory, Afro-Caribbean Philosophy, and gender and sexuality studies. Her dissertation explores works of literature, music, documentary film, and theatre and performance since the 1930s that have critiqued—and imagined alternatives to—the anti-Black and heteropatriarchal violence produced through the various cultural and historical discourses of racial hybridity on the island and its diaspora. The dissertation focuses on “undesirable” genres within literature, music, film, and theatre and performance, such as punk rock and trans/queer documentary filmmaking, that labor from the underground spaces of the diaspora in order to show how aesthetics produce moments of Black fugitivity within the European moral codes of civility imposed by Puerto Rican nationalism as well as American colonialism. She shows how these genres center Blackness and the African diaspora as sites of (im)possibility to express dissent.
Judith is a PhD Candidate and Graduate Opportunity Fellow in Culture and Theory at the University of California, Irvine. She received her B.A. in Comparative Cultural Studies and Theatre Arts from the Ohio State University and M.A. in Culture and Theory from UC Irvine. Judith has published work in Liminalities: A Journal of Performance Studies and has a forthcoming chapter in the anthology Punk: Las Américas through Duke University Press.