Maria Quintana received her Ph.D. from the University of Washington, Seattle, in 2016. Her primary research and writing interests include twentieth century Labor History, Civil Rights, Labor Migration, and Social Movements. Her dissertation, Contracting Freedom: Race, Empire, and U.S. Labor Importation Programs, 1942-1964, interprets “guestworkers” and the Bracero Program through a transnational and global history of labor rights and the U.S. empire. In particular, it places the Bracero Program within multiple contexts and perspectives—the contemporaneous U.S.-Caribbean labor importation programs of 1942, the incarceration of Japanese Americans during World War II, the legal and political framing of indentured servitude and slavery, and the movements for civil rights and decolonization. In doing so, it advances an interpretation of “guestworker” programs that moves beyond the U.S. borders and U.S.-Mexico relations to understand and underscore their imperial roots and effects. Maria is a Postdoctoral Associate at Yale’s Center for the Study of Race, Indigeneity, and Transnational Migration. Her dissertation received the Woodrow Wilson Charlotte W. Newcombe Dissertation Fellowship as well as the Hanauer Dissertation fellowship at the University of Washington.
Maria was the webmaster and copy editor for Blackpast.org during the spring and summer of both 2012 and 2013.