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00:00:00 - Introduction

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Partial Transcript: My name is Alma Urbano. The day is July 29, 2016 and this is a phone interview with Professor Joseph Rodriguez.

Segment Synopsis: Alma introduces Joseph Rodriguez, a Kenyon alumnus.

Keywords: storytelling, latinx communities

00:01:38 - Upbringing and Background

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Partial Transcript: I grew up in Houston, Texas. I'm of Mexican origin.

Segment Synopsis: Joseph describes where he grew up, what his parents did, and how he transferred to Kenyon College because of its English department.

Keywords: houston, texas, mexico, public school, teacher, rural community, austin, magnolia park, bilingual, bicultural, public libraries, first-generation college students, the fugitives (poets),

00:07:40 - Kenyon first impressions.

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Partial Transcript: What was your first impression when you first started Kenyon as an undergraduate student?

Segment Synopsis: Joseph describes how "edenic" he found Kenyon College upon arriving and how that frightened him somewhat.

Keywords: academic comfort, coming of age, edenic, heimweh, mt. vernon (ohio),

00:09:45 - Finding community

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Partial Transcript: There was a very friendly couple that befriended me that lived in Mt. Vernon, so about once we'd get together and share a meal, laughter and share some bilingual stories about our life.

Segment Synopsis: Joseph shares how he made friendships and kinships with fellow Kenyon community members through campus organizations like the office of multi-cultural affairs and Adelante.

Keywords: texan cuisine, mexico, bilingualism, international students, bolivia, costa rica, latino, dinner, friendship, adelante, writing, office, pat mora, judith ortiz coffer, maya angelou, networking, phi kappa sigma, coral group, catholicism, methodism,

00:13:28 - Kenyon classes

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Partial Transcript: I initially considered majoring in English and at the same time, I've always been drawn to the literature from Latin America and also from indigenous communities.

Segment Synopsis: Joseph describes studying Latin American literature and thinking, and names his favorite professors.

Keywords: Latin American literature, feminist studies, professors, mentors, american studies, professor clara roman-odio, professor charles piano, professor royal rhodes, professor miriam dean-otting

Subjects: "Higher Education (United States)"

00:15:40 - Life at Kenyon

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Partial Transcript: Do you remember anything being very meaningful to you?

Segment Synopsis: Joseph describes how he spent his time at Kenyon, like taking long walks.

Keywords: college organizations, support for the arts, college archives, diversity outreach, adelante, african-american community

00:17:27 - Amado Muro and Charles Seltzer

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Partial Transcript: Why would he change his name? Yet he would write these humanizing stories about the people in the area.

Segment Synopsis: Joseph's fascination with Amado Muro, a white American writer that took on a pen name and wrote humanizing stories about Mexicans and Mexican-Americans in the El Paso area.

Keywords: el paso, pseudonyms, border stories, united states, mexico, dual-citizenship, archives, honoring memory, jamie kiwi

00:18:58 - Kenyon administration's responses to student calls for diversity

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Partial Transcript: The events that took place between April and May in 1997 and that called for the Kenyon administration and K president Robert O'Dean to recognize the need for more human diversity at Kenyon and funding programs that would lead to more opportunities for students of color

Segment Synopsis: An incident during Joseph's last year catalyzed a series of reforms by the Kenyon administration aimed at bringing in the people of color within the community. He talks about it's unfurled since. He then discusses his involvement with the college as an alumnus.

Keywords: administration, diversity outreach, mobility of people of color, writing residency, art residency, open forum, alumnus

00:22:30 - Diversity in literature

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Partial Transcript: I'm a reader of the Kenyon Review and I've seen a lot of change and I've seen a lot of change in their publication choices and it's certainly much more representative of a greater America that has much more diverse voices.

Segment Synopsis: Joseph talks about how his classes helped him identify multiple voices within literature.

Keywords: Book of Job, creative writing, Biblical archetypes, Jews in literature, representation, humanism, liberal arts,

00:24:42 - Looking back at Kenyon

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Partial Transcript: I'd get kicked out, like, "Grow up! Move on! A life awaits you."

I realized that something that I still carry with me is the sense of owning my thinking.

Segment Synopsis: Joseph answers how he would change his Kenyon undergratuate experience. He also talks about how he wishes he knew how tightly-knit the Kenyon community was.

Keywords: alumni, state university, seminar, socratic, liberal arts, humanism, to do good and help others,

00:27:49 - Continuing after Kenyon

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Partial Transcript: I think the questions about the need for more equality and equity and access are still with us. Kenyon College prepares students to be the vessels for change and hope.

I earned this. I'm rightly here.

Segment Synopsis: Joseph talks about how Kenyon prepared him to handle issues related to social justice. At Kenyon, Joseph says, he was surrounded by people that he understood, but would also challenge him.

Keywords: post-graduation, asking questions, change-making, sitting at the table, students of color, affirmative action, community, question from current student

00:32:04 - It's a great place to be.

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Partial Transcript: It's a significant journey, and we must be part of it and include others and not be in isolation.

Segment Synopsis: Joseph issues his closing remarks about Kenyon College and the people he met while attending.

Keywords: humanism, community, alumni