Cristina Awadalla


Cristina Awadalla

Research Assistant

Cristina Awadalla is a Ph.D. candidate in Sociology with a Feminist Studies emphasis at the University of California, Santa Barbara. Influenced by her mother’s stories of revolution, Cristina’s dissertation, “La Violencia Machista Reproduce Dictaduras:” Aesthetics, Violence and Women’s Counter Narratives in Contemporary Nicaraguan Politics, explores feminist epistemologies, political culture, memory, and aesthetics in Nicaragua. More specifically, her project examines the use of anti-feminist politics/gender traditionalism as a method of power consolidation amongst authoritarian populists. She has engaged in public sociology by contributing articles regarding the Nicaraguan socio-political crisis and the government’s management of the COVID-19 pandemic in The Left Voice and NACLA. 

As part of the Global Latinidades Project (GLP), Cristina has worked on several initiatives. She was part of the grant writing teams for the NEA, NEH, and the UC-MRPI grants. Additionally, through the GLP’s collaborations with off-campus Latinx communities, Cristina has served as an intern with the Immigrant Legal Defense Center (ILDC). The ILDC serves immigrant communities in the Santa Barbara, Ventura, and San Luis Obispo counties by providing legal service and through its community education initiatives. Cristina has worked under the supervision of Executive Director Julissa Peña and in collaboration with Dr. Olguín. Her work seeks to provide sustained support to the center through grant seeking and ongoing work on community education activities. Through her role with the ILDC, Cristina has worked with Just Communities to develop a youth-led Know Your Rights Project. Using a promotorx model, nine youth immigration ambassadors were equipped with knowledge about the immigration system, immigrant rights, and facilitation skills. Beginning in September the youth began delivering a three-part series of Know Your Rights workshops to the community. Via in-depth workshops, the program seeks to de-mystify the immigration system to empower community members to assert their rights and share this knowledge throughout their personal networks. Cristina’s ongoing work through this initiative includes building community partnerships in order to expand the program to meet the diversity of needs and experiences among the primarily Latinx immigrant populations in the tri-county area. 

GLP Research Assistant