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Faculty

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Ruben Flores

  • Associate Professor

PhD, University of California, Berkeley, 2006

461 Rush Rhees Library
ruben.flores@rochester.edu

Office Hours: T and Th 10:00am - 12:00pm

Curriculum Vitae


Research Overview

I am an intellectual and cultural historian of the US and Mexico who studies social reform movements and the use of university and government institutions as tools for creating social consensus. Part of my dual interest in the US and Mexico points me in the direction of comparative and international history, but within each country I am also interested in the growth of the social sciences, the use of science and religion as different ways of thinking about the world, and the history of racial and ethnic categories as ways of thinking about people.

My book, Backroads Pragmatists: Mexico's Melting Pot and Civil Rights in the United States (2014), analyzes the history of cultural diversity and civil rights in mid-20th century American society by tracing the intellectual path of American social scientists who understood postrevolutionary Mexico to be the premier example of national integration in the Western Hemisphere. Using evidence from the United States and Mexico, it examines the reasons why the social experiments of the postrevolutionary Mexican state became institutional models in the 1930s and 1940s for American social scientists committed to eradicating segregation in the public schools of the American West and reconciling American racial diversity into a unified national culture. My book adds to a growing literature on U.S. civil rights that emphasizes events before 1954 and around the world as influences on the development of political opposition to American segregation. It also shows the ways in which American policy debates about the "melting pot" cannot be understood apart from national integration projects in Latin America.

I have also published articles about US and Mexican intellectual history alongside colleagues from anthropology, philosophy, psychology, American studies, and sociology departments in the US and Mexico.

Graduate Fields

I offer the following fields for the PhD qualifying examination. For explanations of fields, see the "Program Formulation" page in the Graduate Handbook.

Other (below): US Intellectual and Cultural History; Mexican Intellectual and Cultural History; Latino History; Latino Migration; US Borderlands; Transnational History

I will be accepting graduate students for admission in Fall 2020.

Courses Offered (subject to change)

  • HIS 149:  Writing Latino America
  • HIS 222/W:  The Cultural History of 20th Century Mexico
  • HIS 159:  Trump and the Making of the Border
  • HIS 501:  Worlds of Inquiry

Select Publication Covers




Selected Publications

  • "Backroads Pragmatists: Mexico's Melting Pot and Civil Rights in the United States" (Philadelphia: University of Pennsylvania Press, 2014)
  • "John Dewey and the Legacy of Mexican Pragmatism in the United States," in Gregory Pappas, ed. Pragmatism in the Americas (New York: Fordham University Press, March 2011), 69-88.
  • "Parallel Empires: Transnationalism and Intellectual History in the Western Hemisphere," in Andrew Hartman and Ray Haberski, eds. American Labyrinth: Intellectual History for Complicated Times (Ithaca: Cornell University Press), 2018
  • "Repercusiones de la democracia posrevolucionaria mexicana en los Estados Unidos," in Adalberto Santana ed. América Latina y la Revolución Mexicana (Mexico City: Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México, 2010), pp. 129-142.
  • "Parallel Empires: Transnationalism and Intellectual History in the Western Hemisphere," in Andrew Hartman and Ray Haberski, eds. American Labyrinth: Intellectual History for Complicated Times (Ithaca: Cornell University Press), 2018
  • Ruben Flores, et. al. "Using History to Analyze the Learning by Observing and Pitching In Practices of Contemporary Mesoamerican Societies," in Rebeca Mejia-Arauz, et. al. eds. Advances in Child Development and Behavior (New York: Elsevier, 2015)