Public humanities and public history have been at the forefront of Jonathan’s scholarly training since they started documenting the history of the Chicana/o Movement in South Texas while an undergraduate at The University of Texas at Austin. Between 2011-2021, they have led and been part of projects that seek to work with communities of color in efforts to collect and catalog archival material, to offer knowledge to large public audiences, and to engage in community discussions about Latinx history. Dr. Cortez received their Master’s in Public Humanities from the John Nicholas Brown Center for the Public Humanities and Cultural Heritage in 2017 from Brown University.
Below are selected examples and brief descriptions of Jonathan’s public-facing projects.
Voces y Visiones with artist Bobby Marines
Other Public Humanities Work
Jonathan’s public humanities and digital humanities work expands across content and continents. As part of a group of five Public Humanities students from Brown, Jonathan traveled to Hong Kong in 2016 to work with scholars and activists from the Chinese University of Hong Kong. They interviewed over twenty students, artists, and faculty who participated in the occupation of major Hong Kong intersections as part of the Umbrella Movement’s calls for universal suffrage. The group took tours of the occupation sites, listened to lectures, and viewed archival material. This resulted in three exhibits in Providence, RI that covered protest art, photography, and youth activism. From 2015-2017, Jonathan was a researcher for the digital humanities project Mapping Violence, led by Dr. Monica Martinez, documenting the history of racial violence along the southern border. Dr. Cortez’s global collaborations continue to build transnational support for the public humanities.