Christina Heatherton

Faculty Advisor: Ruth Wilson Gilmore

Contact Information


Biographical Sketch

Christina Heatherton is a historian and interdisciplinary scholar of social movements. Her work explores the intersections of race, class, and gender. She is the author of The Color Line and the Class Struggle: The Mexican Revolution, Internationalism, and the American Century (forthcoming) and is currently editing a volume entitled The World Refuses: Global Struggles Against Racism and Imperialism, 1893-1933. Her work will appear in the volume Rising Tides of Color: Race, Radicalism, and Repression on the Pacific Coast and Beyond edited by Moon-Ho Jung (University of Washington Press, 2014) and in the journal Interface. She is the co-founder of Freedom Now Books an independent publishing company dedicated to collaborative work between scholars, activists, and artists. She is the editor of Downtown Blues: A Skid Row Reader (2011) and the co-editor with Jordan T. Camp of Freedom Now! Struggles for the Human Right to Housing in LA and Beyond (2012). She is the recipient of multiple awards for research and social justice. She is a member of the Global Advisory Board of the Arcus Center for Social Justice Leadership. She received her Ph.D. from USC's Department of American Studies and Ethnicity in 2012 and is currently a postdoctoral fellow at the Center for Place, Culture, and Politics at the CUNY Graduate Center.


  • B.A. UC - Berkeley , 05/2004

Employment History

  • Instructor, Baruch College, City University of New York, 2006 - 2007


Summary Statement of Research Interests

  • In her manuscript, The Color Line and the Class Struggle, Christina Heatherton offers a historical geography of early twentieth-century global radicalism. While much has been made of the influences of the Russian Revolution and Chinese Revolution on radical movements in the twentieth century, her study foregrounds the less well-studied influence of the Mexican Revolution. Through extensive archival research, it demonstrates that the Revolution critically inspired an alternate feminist, anti-racist, and anti-imperialist revolutionary trajectory during what supporters and detractors alike have deemed the “American Century.” It reveals how U.S. radicals, like African American artist Elizabeth Catlett and Japanese American organizer Karl Yoneda as well as revolutionaries from the world’s “darker nations” such as Mexican muralist José Clemente Orozco, Indian Marxist M.N. Roy, and Russian feminist Alexandra Kollontai found inspiration, refuge, and solidarity in the actual and imagined spaces of Revolutionary Mexico. It establishes that their collaborative efforts to theorize and oppose the expansion of U.S. capitalist imperialism produced new forms of internationalism; reconfiguring the class struggle as a conjoined fight against the color line. In tracing this history, it contributes to literatures interrogating race, empire, and internationalism in an effort to reframe presiding interpretations of U.S. culture and political economy.

Research Keywords

  • Internationalism, U.S.History, Mexican Revolution, Race, Space, Culture, Convergence Spaces



  • Department of American Studies & Ethnicity
  • University of Southern California
  • 3620 South Vermont Avenue
  • Kaprielian Hall 462
  • Los Angeles, California 90089-2534