Roberto Rodriguez

Associate Professor Emeritus, Mexican American & Raza Studies

Roberto Rodriguez, PhD – or Dr. Cintli – retired as an associate professor in the Mexican American Studies Department, at the University of Arizona. He is a longtime-award-winning journalist/columnist who returned to school in 2003 in pursuit of a Master's degree (2005) and a Ph.D. in Mass Communications (Jan. 2008) at the University of Wisconsin at Madison. While there, he co-produced with Patrisia Gonzales, Amoxtli San Ce Tojuan, a 2005 documentary on origins and migrations. Also, Ethinic Studies at UC Berkeley published a collection of their columns (Gonzales-Rodriguez, Uncut and Uncensored, 1996). Prior to returning to school he was a nationally syndicated columnist, first with Chronicle features and then with Universal Press Syndicate. He is the author of Justice: A Question of Race (Bilingual Review Press, 1997); it documents his 7 ½ year quest for justice in the courtroom, involving 2 trials, stemming from a case of police brutality that almost cost him his life. His research at the University of Arizona focused on Maiz culture on this continent, which includes its relationship to the Ethnic Studies controversies nationwide. Dr. Cintli taught classes on the history of maiz, Mexican/Chicano/Chicana culture and politics and the history of red-brown journalism. As part of his work, he has developed and published on the concept of running epistemology (International Journal of Critical Indigenous Studies, 2012. In 2013, a major digitized collection of Mexican and Indigenous media was inaugurated by the University Arizona Libraries, based on a class he created: The History of Red-Brown Journalism. He recently wrote for Diverse Issues in Higher Education and currently writes for Truthout’s Public Intellectual Project. His book, “Our Sacred Maiz is our Mother: Nin Tonantzin Non Centeotl” was published by the University of Arizona Press 2014. He works with the concepts of elder-youth epistemology and running epistemology and was the 2013 Baker-Clark Human Rights award from American Educational Research Association. He recently completed another book for the UA Press on violence against the Black-Brown-Indigenous communities of the United States: Yolqui: A warrior summonsed from the spirit world (University of Arizona Press, Fall 2019). He is working on the last of his trilogy: Smiling Brown, a book and project on color and color consciousness among Brown peoples in this country and on this continent. He is also working on a book on origins and migrations of Mexican peoples with his former co-author Gonzales. In 2016, he received an award from the National Association for Ethnic Studies, in recognition and appreciation as Conference Chair for the 44th annual conference at the UA. Currently, Dr. Rodriguez is coordinating a Maya Maíz Roots conference involving 15 Maya scholars who will visit Arizona in April 2019 to teach their culture, history and philosophy.