Hispanic Drylands, a Workshop Beyond Borders

The Global Drylands Center (GDC) & the Chicano/Latino Faculty and Staff Association (CLFSA) coordinated an evening event on March 15, entitled Hispanic Drylands. We developed a new framework analyzing the two-way interactions between Hispanic Culture and Drylands. Hispanic culture originated in the drylands of Southern Europe and spread mostly into the drylands of the Americas. How the culture-environment interaction determines the management of the SW and how its biophysical characteristics modified the Hispanic culture was our focus. Further, the event highlighted the overlap of drylands, Chicanos, and Latinos, to unveil a rich tapestry of interconnectedness shaped by historical, environmental, and cultural factors. Drylands, characterized by arid conditions, have played a significant role in shaping the experiences and identities of Chicanos and Latinos throughout history. By understanding and appreciating these connections, we gained insight into the complex interplay of both, giving perspective into the importance of fostering sustainable relationships with arid ecosystems for future generations. Attendees had the pleasure to hear stories from Dr. Ferran Garcia-Pichel, Regents’ Professor at SOLS, present on Acequias and Adobe, and Dr. Anita Huizar- Hernández, Associate Professor at SILC and author of Forging Arizona, focused on the US-Mexico borderlands, and how these stories told have significant outcomes. The group also got to hear Alberto Ríos, Regents Professor and recipient of the Katharine C. Turner Endowed Chair in English, perform his poem, The Border: A Double Sonnet. Make sure to stay connected on social media with the Center (Bluesky and Twitter/X) and its director Dr. Osvaldo Sala (Bluesky and Twitter/X) to learn about upcoming events, news, and publications!