Jessica Taft

Jessica K. Taft is an Associate Professor of Latin American and Latino Studies at the University of California at Santa Cruz.  An interdisciplinary youth studies scholar, her work focuses on the political activism of children and youth across the Americas.  This research engages the theoretical question of how identity narratives shape social movement practices, centering on the ways that the subject categories of child, youth, adult, teenager, and girl are discursively constructed within transnational and local political cultures and how these subject categories matter for the strategies, organizational structures, and internal dynamics of social movements.  She is the author of Rebel Girls: Youth Activism and Social Change Across the Americas (NYU Press 2011), co-editor (with Sandi Kawecka Nenga) of Youth Engagement: The Civic-Political Lives of Children and Youth (Emerald Publishing 2013), and is currently completing a book on age, power, and intergenerational relationships within the Peruvian movement of working children.  She has published articles on youth and politics in a range of journals including Girlhood Studies, Politics & Gender, Childhood, Youth & Society, Education, Citizenship & Social Justice,and Latin American Perspectives.  Taft is also a co-editor of the new NYU Press book series, Critical Perspectives on Youth.