John Mckiernan-González, Ph.D.


I have long been interested in public health and Latino social movements. My first job after college was in HIV testing and prevention for the Cook County Health Department, while I volunteered with the Immigrant Rights Network. In both jobs, I wanted something that could connect the long presence of Mexican communities in the United States to the history of American public health. There were none then. I decided to pursue a career researching and writing the history of these connections. I completed my Ph.D in History at the University of Michigan. My first book, Fevered Measures: Public Health and Race at the Texas-Mexico Border, 1848-1942, examines how the United States Public Health Service built its first medical border in the Texas-Mexico borderlands and how Mexican, Mexican American, and Black communities responded to the drawing of this medical border across their communities. My next project, Working Conditions: Medical Authority and Latino Civil Rights, examines how Latino communities sought to transform medical authority, a tool often used against minority communities, into an instrument for social justice. This project examines this complicated process in Texas, Chicago, California, and New York. My other project, Race against Labor, examines the way modern black and Mexican migrations shaped cultural movements and cultural boundaries in Southern and Mexican history.

Dr. Mckiernan-González specializes in Mexican American History, Latino Studies, Social and Cultural History of Medicine, and Immigration History

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