Date of Graduation


Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Education (Ed.D.)


School of Education


International and Multicultural Education


International & Multicultural Education EdD

First Advisor

Rosa Jimenez

Second Advisor

Ursula Aldana

Third Advisor

Emma Fuentes


Education environments have systematically excluded, silenced, and erroneously spoken on behalf of Women of Color. Linear forms of scholarship and research practices propagate the dominant perspective and fail to address systems of oppression that result in epistemic suppression and academic hostility towards brown minds. Historically, Latina women have not been seen as creators of knowledge, and their access to educational spaces has been restricted. According to census projections, in 2036, Latinas/os will account for the largest minority group in the United States and one-third of the American educational system. Therefore, academic spaces must establish practices to include Latina women as knowledge sources. Through individual pláticas and a narrative inquiry approach, this study explored how Latina women use their knowledge and cultural ways of knowing to disrupt, resist, and navigate traditional, hegemonic, and Eurocentric educational settings. Participants’ testimonios were collected and analyzed using narrative analysis. Grounded in Chicana Feminist Epistemologies (CFE) and Community Cultural Wealth framework (CCW), challenge dominant Eurocentric epistemologies and move away from deficit-based narratives to asset-based methodologies. The findings of this study illustrate the problematic nature of the prevailing patriarchy within family, community, and society at large. Women face marginalization across academic and professional environments through ascribed gender norms that are imposed and enacted. Latina women navigate multiple sites of oppression by negotiating culture, language, and identity. The influence of familial knowledge was evident, and participants employed various forms of community cultural wealth to resist normative hegemonic ideologies. Additionally, mentoring and sisterhood were a way that Latina women sought to support their academic and life journeys. Participants challenged existing gender roles and power relations by balancing iii relationships and family expectations and continuing to invest in their own professional educational growth. The results suggest that current institutional academic support structures available to women are not necessarily the most appropriate for facilitating equality, access, and visibility, because these so-called support structures have been created without considering Latina women's needs. Moreover, institutions have an obligation to review current policies and implement processes that ensure equal representation and opportunity. Additional research is needed by and of Latinas/os to mitigate the skewed information that has previously been published. Future research must be approached with an inclusive mentality and should consider whose voice and knowledge is centered and what purpose scholarship will serve.

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