Sep 29, 2021 - News
University of Texas professor snags "genius" grant
University of Texas history professor Monica Muñoz Martinez has won a 2021 MacArthur Foundation 'Genius' Grant
University of Texas history professor Monica Muñoz Martinez. Photo courtesy of John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation

University of Texas history professor Monica Muñoz Martinez has won a 2021 MacArthur Foundation "genius" grant for illuminating long-obscured cases of racial violence along the U.S.-Mexico border in ways that resonate today.

  • The award comes with $625,000 — no strings attached — and a ton of prestige.

Her book, "The Injustice Never Leaves You," covers a period of anti-Mexican violence in the early 20th century throughout the Texas borderlands.

Why it matters: The past is never far behind, as Texans continue to war over how to represent the state's history.

  • "This was a period of state-sanctioned racial terror that included acts of lynchings, massacres, racially motivated homicides and police violence and police murder," Martinez said about the period in her book in a video posted on the MacArthur Foundation website. "In some cases, these histories have been hidden, but at worst, these histories have been celebrated."
  • "We are asking people to unlearn so much of what they’ve been presented with in public school textbooks and popular culture, so it’s a long and ongoing task to teach people a more accurate history of Texas, but also of the United States more broadly," she said.
avatar

Get more local stories in your inbox with Axios Austin.

More Austin stories

No stories could be found

Austinpostcard

Get a free daily digest of the most important news in your backyard with Axios Austin.