About the Site Designer
My name is Darrel Enck-Wanzer (click here for updated curriculum vitae). I am an Assistant Professor in the Department of Communication Studies at the University of North Texas. I received my doctorate in rhetoric and public culture in the Department of Communication and Culture at Indiana University. My research focuses on the intersections of rhetoric, race, and democracy. Coming out of this research, my teaching tries to bring together concerns with the relationship between symbolic action and power/domination, and treats teaching-learning as a transformative and potentially liberatory process.
In the broadest sense, my research seeks to address the possibilities for resistance given the constraints of U.S. liberal democratic public culture. Motivating this research is a concern with the ways in which race and ethnicity complicate and are complicated by our democratic social imaginary. My current research project emerged out of a dissertation that examines the New York Young Lords -- a group of revolutionary Nuyoricans (New York Puerto Ricans) and other ethnic minorities who led a radical movement for social change, primarily in the early 1970s.
For me, research comes from an intensely personal place and broadens out from there. When my mother came to this country from Puerto Rico, she arrived with a faith that, in “America,” anything is possible. She came here, as many Puerto Ricans have, seeking the American Dream in the land of milk and honey. After some time, however, my family learned that the milk frequently goes sour and all that’s left of the honey is a sticky residue that Puerto Ricans are too often expected to clean up. I mention this because it speaks to what motivates my research and teaching: it is not wholly bitterness toward a system of inequity; and it is especially not the continuation of my family’s former blind faith in an American Dream. Rather, I am motivated by a tempered hope that even (perhaps, especially) within a political field marked by structural and attitudinal inequities, a democratic political consciousness and the lived experience of equal opportunity is possible.
I've put up this website because I think people need to know more about the Young Lords. As the first large-scale radical Puerto Rican organization in the U.S. post-McCarthyism, they were (and I think can still be) incredibly important and influential. When I started my dissertation on the Young Lords from Bloomington, Indiana, I was frustrated by the lack of resources to which I had access. Since then, I've made quite a few trips to New York to gather materials and interview former Lords. It's my hope that I can share what I've learned and gathered with other interested people. Eventually, I'd like to have as much of my archive online as is possible.
If you'd like to know anything else about me or about where this website is headed, please feel free to email me at the address at the bottom of this page. I try to be a friendly and mindful person and always welcome the opportunity to talk with new people. Also, please check out my book by clicking the image below.
For comments, questions, or more information, please email