Associate Professor


  • Office Hours:

    T/Th 3pm or by Appointment
  • Role:

  • Position:

    • Associate Professor
  • Department:

    • Ethnic Studies and Women's Studies & Gender Research
  • Education:

    • PhD Comparative Ethnic Studies, University of California, Berkeley


Dr. Caridad Souza is an associate professor of Ethnic Studies and Women’s and Gender Studies in the Department of Ethnic Studies at Colorado State University (CSU). Her teaching and research interests include racialized gender and sexuality, multiracial and decolonial feminisms, testimonio as methodology and method, critical ethnography, and feminist pedagogy. Dr. Souza has written about teenage pregnancy, work, gender and households, Latina sexualities, and feminist pedagogies and is a co-author on Telling to Live: Latina Feminist Testimonio (Duke University Press, 2001) as well as about teaching intersectionality, settler colonialism & eugenics in social work, and Afro-Latinx decolonial feminism. Caridad uses Theatre of the Oppressed techniques in her classes as a way to increase embodiment among her students and incorporates art-based and mindfulness practices into her teaching, research, and community engagement towards the development of a feminist decolonial healing justice praxis. Her community engagement work is both local and transnational including working with immigrant communities in Colorado, with youth and gender equity activists in Ghana, West Africa, and with children and adolescents in her local community of Fort Collins, Colorado.

Her work with immigrant communities involves sharing how to use a decolonial and intersectional feminist lens with emerging Latinx immigrant leaders interested in nonprofit and entrepreneurial work. She also co-directs the Social Justice Through the Arts Summer Institute program in partnership with the CSU Alliance Program and the Department of Art & Art History to teach basic social justice concepts using arts-based practices to students from under-resourced high schools in Colorado. More recently, Caridad has engaged with a healing justice framework through arts-based practices that she uses both in the United States and in her work in Ghana, West Africa.

Alongside her colleague Dr. Nikoli Attai, she helps manage the Collab Lab, a collaborative research hub that investigates the ways in which race, gender, and sexuality inform a sense of belonging in varied political, cultural, social, economic, and historical contexts in the US and beyond. She is also the co-founder of one of the lab’s main projects, the Undergraduate Academy of Feminist Scholars (UGAFS), to nurture and inspire innovative and exciting research for undergraduate students.


Souza, Caridad and Karina Lissette Céspedes, Dispatches from an Afro-Latinx Decolonial Feminism, Journal of Chicana/Latina Studies, Vol.22, No.1, 2023.

Bubar, R. Kelly, T., Souza, C., Lovato-Romero, L. and  Bundy-Fazioli, K. Disrupting Settler Colonial Microaggressions: Implications for Social Work, International Journal of Social Work Values and Ethics, Volume 19, Number 2 (2022).

Souza, Caridad, Roe Bubar, Karina Lissette Céspedes, and Kimberly Bundy-Fazioli, “Impact of Settler Colonialism and Racism on Social Work:  Considerations and Challenges for A Self-Reflexive Practice,” in Antiracist Social Work Practice: Beginning and Advanced Knowledge, Skills and Techniques ed. By Wendy Ashely.

Cespedes, K., Souza, C., Bubar, R., & Bundy-Fazioli, K. (2021). A queer decolonial feminist approach to teaching intersectionality. In L. Murti & Flores, G. (Eds.) Gender, Race and Class in the Lives of Today’s Teachers: Educators at Intersections. New York, NY: Springer International Publishing.

Cervenak, S.J., K. L. Cespedes, A. Straub, and C. Souza. "Imagining differently: The politics of listening in a feminist classroom." In This bridge we call home, edited by Gloria Anzaldua and Ana Louise Keating pp. 355-370. Routledge, 2013.

Fernandez-Gimenez, M., Bubar, R., & Souza, C. (2019). Unsettling Collaborative Conservation through a Decolonizing Lens: Engagement and Collaboration with Indigenous Peoples and Communities. Final Report for the Center for Collaborative Conservation. Non-refereed.

Fouad, N., Bubar, R., Jennings, L., Krafchick, J., Langstraat, L., Bernasek, A., & Souza, C. (2017). Report to the Standing Committee on the Status of Women Faculty: Qualitative Study on Culture and Climate for Women Faculty at Colorado State University. Colorado State University, Fort Collins, Colorado.

Martinez, D., Cespedes, K., Bubar, R., & Souza, C. (2018). When the decolonial goes precolonial: Voices of ancestors, revolutions and beings. International Review of Qualitative Research, 11(1), 81-94. (equal contribution of co-authors).

Wilmer, H., M.E. Fernández‑Giménez, S. Ghajar, P. L. Taylor, C. Souza, J. D. Derner, Managing for the middle: rancher care ethics under uncertainty on Western Great Plains rangelands, Agriculture and Human Values, September 2019.

Souza, C. “The Sexual Identities of Young Puerto Rican Mothers.” Dialogo: Latino Research Center, DePaul University, Winter/Spring, 2002, pp.34-39.

Telling to Live: Latina Feminist Testimonios, with Luz del Alba Acevedo,  Duke University Press, 2001 (equal contribution of co-authors).

Souza, C. "Personal Responsibility Among Puerto Rican Teenage Mother," Economic and Political Weekly Review of Labor, May 27-June 2, 2000, vol. 35(20-21):  24-32.

Souza, C. "Introduction: Latina Sexualities," Guest Editor for Special Issue on Latina Sexuality, Phoebe: An Interdisciplinary Journal of Scholarship, Theory, and Aesthetics, Spring, 1999,11(1)1-5.

Souza, C. "The Other's Other: Racial Ambiguity Among Puertorriqueñas in the Northeastern United States" Journal of Chicana/Latina Studies, University of California, Davis, Center for Chicana/Latina Research, 1997.

Souza, C. "With Both Feet On The Ground and One Eye Toward the Future" Phoebe: A Journal of Feminist Scholarship, Theory, and Aesthetics, Spring & Fall 1995 8(1-2):39-51.

Souza, C. "Ethnography, Identity, Power: On The Relationship Among Puertorriqueñas in an Urban Neighborhood,"  Phoebe: A Journal of Feminist Scholarship, Theory, and Aesthetics, Spring 1997, 6(1): 1-23.

First Generation Story

Dr. Caridad Souza is the first-generation daughter and granddaughter of immigrants from Puerto Rico and the Cape Verde Islands, people who deeply valued education even when life circumstances made it difficult for any of them to pursue one.  Caridad is the first person in her family to earn a B.A., Master’s, and Doctoral degree, overcoming the limitations of her inner-city educational background. Growing up between South Bronx and South Queens in New York City, Caridad's childhood summers were filled with late-night reading and dreams of one day traveling the world.   Although her inner-city schools posed various challenges, her academic diligence earned her the grades necessary to advance to college. Her collegiate journey was made possible thanks to initiatives like the Educational Opportunity Program, crafted by Arthur O. Eve, New York State's first AfroLatinx state representative. Understanding that children of color often faced systemic barriers, Eve's program provided the crucial financial support Caridad needed to pursue her educational aspirations.  Caridad's realization that she could earn a living by indulging in her three greatest passions—reading, engaging in intellectual discussions, and writing—felt like hitting the jackpot.  With an insatiable appetite for knowledge, she eagerly sought a Ph.D., even though the path it entailed was not always clear to her. Caridad firmly believed that education could transform her life, a belief that has indeed become her reality.


  • WS 269: Women of Color in the United States

    This course uses a comparative approach to survey the contemporary experiences of Women of Color in the United States. We will explore the lives of African American, Asian American, and Latinx women in the context of the cultural, socio-historical, economic, and political arrangements that give meaning to and shape their lives. Topics include racialized constructions of womanhood, the histories of respective racialized ethnic groups, work and the economy, family, kinship and social reproduction, controlling dark female bodies, violence, the politics of the body, reproductive justice, racialized sexuality, and the transformative visions coming from women in communities of color.

  • WS 375: Intersectionality: Theory, Method, Practice

    How do feminist scholars approach the study and practice of Intersectionality? What does an intersectional framework add to our feminist practice? How and where can we apply our Intersectional literacy in the world around us? This course explores the concept of Intersectionality as a framework developed to address the complexities of power relations and multiple oppressions.

  • WS 472: Multiracial and Decolonial Feminisms

    This course uses an interdisciplinary and comparative lens to explore the complexities of multiracial and decolonial feminist social theory and scholarly practices. We analyze and interpret the intellectual contributions, lived experiences, and social activism of feminists of women of color living and working within the United States. By delving into key texts from various historical periods, we trace how their perspectives as alternative chroniclers of power and knowledge to asses how their writings offer important critical feminist political interventions with transformative possibilities.

  • WS 601: Foundations of Feminist Research

    This graduate-level course on feminist methodologies offers a critical assessment of knowledge-generating strategies regarding their suitability for feminist research. This type of research is a self-reflexive inquiry that seeks knowledge for emancipatory purposes and challenges asymmetrical and inequitable knowledge constructions. The course encourages students to recognize the value commitments that inform the variety of research approaches and that are maintained at all levels of research from initiating a hypothesis, asking the research question, identifying evidence, or selecting relevantly significant outcomes. The first two-thirds of the course addresses theories and debates regarding feminist epistemologies, research methodologies, and ethics. The last third focuses on specific research dilemmas such as reflexivity, feminist pedagogies, and public feminist scholarship.